Mike and I did not spend more than five minutes discussing names throughout my whole pregnancy. I knew Mike liked to wait until the last minute to decide and that there was a better chance of getting the name I wanted, if I waited until the delivery room before I mentioned it. Mike has very specific rules about girls' names. They have to have at least three syllables and end in a vowel. When we were choosing Christiana's name, he told me the more syllables the better, which is when I suggested Christiana. After having to fill out numerous forms and spell her name out for people, I wanted a much shorter name for the next baby. I had wanted to name Christiana, Naomi, because of the connection to adoption. Some have even suggested that Naomi nursed her adopted son. We also have the tradition of giving the kids our middle names, but now that there were so many, we weren't sure we would continue that. So, I had chosen Naomi Ruth as my girl's name.
A long time ago, we had decided to name our kids after our grandparents which is where Amanda's name comes from. Amanda was my dad's mom. Our boy's name was James Keith: my grandpa and Mike grandpa on our moms' sides. However, since we made that decision, three other great grandchildren have been given the middle name James so we were rethinking that as well.
Mike and I discussed and picked out Tony's name in the delivery room before he was born, but we never discussed a name while I was in labor with Talitha. It just didn't come up when we were out walking, and by the time I saw him again after walking with my doula and Darla, things were too intense to do any talking. I asked him about it after I delivered as he was getting ready to go home to be with the girls. He said that we would talk about it later.
I had talked about names with my doula and Darla. My doula brought up the possibility that if we didn't use my middle name, this little girl would feel left out or the adopted girls would wonder why they were different. Darla agreed and said that if she had more daughters they would all have her middle name. It was a very good point. I guess the Duggars probably never imagined they'd have to come up with so many "J" names when they started that tradition, too. The problem was that I didn't like Naomi Marie. It was too much of a tongue fumbler.
So, Mike went home to check on the girls and research some girls' names. Before he came that evening, he called me with the list of potential names. It included Naomi, Talitha and our doctor's name. There were a few other ones that I didn't like at all and don't really remember. Shortly after I was talking to my cousin Elisa and shared the list with her. I told her that I liked Talitha the best with my middle name. She said that she loved that name and then she told me the story of where it was found in the Bible. I immediately knew that was the right name. Jesus brought life to a portion of our life where we had seen only death- our fertility.
Then I asked her if it was common or trendy and she said that the only time she has ever heard it was at her church in MN. Her pastor's adopted daughter is also named Talitha. Her pastor was John Piper. His heart, testimony and preaching about adoption have had a huge impact on our family. That was the connection to adoption that I wanted in her name. It was important to me because her life would bring special blessing to our adopted daughter by means of sharing her mama's milk with her adopted sister.
When Mike got to the hospital I told him, "Her name is Talitha Marie," and then told him all the rest of the story. He agreed that was the best name for her and the rest is history.
I thought I would catch the most flack from my mom and grandma. They like very traditional common names, but when they called my aunt, Sr. Maria, she immediately knew the story from the Bible and could tell them. Yes! Validated by the nun! Now, I've never been one to want challenging and different names. I didn't want to have to be repeating and explain and spelling out a difficult name for people all the time. But, what could I do? This was what her name was meant to be.
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6 years ago