Monday, March 11, 2013

The Name

I found naming our baby extremely stressful.  It's a lot of pressure of knowing that someone has to live with a name I picked out for them for the rest of their lives!

Greg got me this bracelet when Allie was born.

The biggest challenge was for Greg and I to agree on a name.  We actually had a boy's name we both loved and would have used if Allie had been a boy, but when we found out she was a girl, it was a little more challenging to finalize the choice.

Really, I think knew in my heart the whole time that we would end up naming her Allison May, but I was hesitant to commit until the day she was born.  Allison was actually my idea.  My parents considered it as a possible name for me when I was born and I'd always liked the name so I brought it up when we started to consider girls names.  Even though it was my suggestion, it was Greg that really fell in love with the name Allison and wanted it from day one, while I wavered for months.

I spent hours searching online on name websites, looking at girls names and developing lists that I would bring to Greg, only to have him shoot them all down.  I really liked Lauren (my middle name), Megan, and Emerson for girls names, but Greg didn't like any of those.  He usually said that he had met someone he didn't like that he associated with the names I was coming up with.  He also didn't like anything too modern or too complicated to spell.  He was extremely picky.  Really, I think it more that he just liked the name Allison so much, he really wasn't open to anything else.

I had a few concerns over the name Allison.  One, it seemed to be a name a lot of people my age have, and I wondered if it was too 70s/80s.  Obviously there is a trend of old names being used now, but mostly names from our grandparents' generation like Emma, Eleanor, Adele, not so much popular name choices from the 70s.  Two, I also felt like it was a serious name for a baby or little girl.  That wasn't a huge concern, because we knew we'd call her Allie while she was little, and I actually did like that she has the option of going with Allie or Allison if she wants something more professional later down the line.  The third hesitation was that when you call her Allie with the middle name May, it's SO Southern- Allie May!

I wouldn't commit to the name for the whole pregnancy, even telling people when they asked that it would probably be Allison, but we weren't absolutely sure, and not to monogram anything just yet.

One thing that makes the name Allison special to me is that my close friend Alison and I went through our fertility struggles together for over a year.  If there is anyone that understands what I went through to have Allie it's Alison.  We talked almost every day about Reproductive Endocrinologists, treatments, miscarriages,  seeing everyone around us get pregnant and have babies, and everything else related to the struggle of wanting a baby.  She gets it and listened to me when I complained, was sad, was frustrated, was hopeful...all of it.  She's also a runner so we often talked about running/training as well as fertility struggles.  In the end, right before I pregnant with Allie, I wished it would be her over me that got the miracle baby.  I felt like she had struggled enough and I still had more time, and it was HER turn.  But, it was me that got pregnant this time, and I was actually visiting her when it happened, so she was even there for my first phone calls to the RE and some of the first pregnancy tests I took.  I wondered if she'd be able to still talk to me during my pregnancy, and I know there have probably been many days when it's been hard for her.  After I made it past many ultrasounds with strong heartbeats and into the second trimester, if anyone was rooting for me, it was Alison.  I was so grateful to have her there to talk to, because I know she understood a lot of what I was feeling as I cautiously tried to enjoy what seemed to finally be a healthy pregnancy.  I don't know if I could have made it through everything without her, because she truly is the one person that I feel like really understands what I went through.  I'm forever grateful and we're forever connected by this experience.  Even though we opted to spell Allison with two L's, I still consider the name a tribute to Alison and hope that Allie is as awesome a person as my friend.

Alison and I a couple years ago, not too long after I started trying to conceive.

The middle name was something I was definitive on and had pretty much settled on before the first name was set in stone.  May was my grandmother's middle name, and I knew a long time ago that I wanted to use it because I love the name and I loved my grandmother so much.  She would have loved Allie and I wish she'd gotten to meet her.  May is also the month Greg and I got married, so that's a bonus as well :).

In the end, I think I just wanted to see Allie and feel confident that she looked like an Allison or Allie, and that it was the right name for her.  When she was born, I felt no hesitation, she was Allison May for sure.

Photo credit Volree Wade


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