What’s In A Name?

Like the little Shakespeare quote for the title? Now I’m no longer going to be a Drama teacher, I need to wedge the theatrical side of me into other stuff – ha ha! It’s actually just an intro to a baby names post!

The line is from Romeo and Juliet:

What’s in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other word would smell as sweet;

Instagram screenshot - baby names
baby names - Lucas Christopher

Juliet is stating that Romeo’s name is meaningless.

A rose would still be a rose even if it wasn’t called a rose. Romeo would still be the man she loved even if he wasn’t a Montague. Clearly, if you have any knowledge of the story, Juliet being a Capulet and Romeo a Montague, is a massive issue.

So what does this have to do with me, my blog and my baby names?

Is this just a random post analysing a bit of Shakespeare? No it isn’t, it’s about the importance of names. My children’s names to be exact. My previous blog and this one have collectively been running for just over three years. In that time I have never divulged my children’s names. From the beginning I felt that it was better for them that I didn’t. I was protecting them. It was in their best interests to keep them private. My son began as Baby R, then progressed to Mini R. This was followed by Little L and now, usually just L. Our daughter has always been S or Spud.

As I use Instagram Stories more and more, I’m finding it increasing difficult to not use their names

There have been some uber cute videos that I haven’t been able to share. it’s hard to explain to a four year old why he shouldn’t call his sister by her name. This is not the only reason for deciding the share their names. I have decided that it doesn’t make a lot of difference. I show their faces on my social media and blog posts. With this in mind, I have decided to share my children’s names and start using them. You may have seen if you follow me on Instagram. I wanted to write a post with a little more detail and a few more pictures.

Names are an identity.

After all, that’s why it’s so bloody hard to name a child isn’t it?! It’s the first thing that makes them who they are. When they have no personality and just eat, sleep and poop, their name makes them a person. Some people know from day dot what they are going to call their children. For many others their pregnancy is spent googling and discussing with their other halves.

Considering that my husband and I rarely agree on things, you can imagine how difficult it was for us! Ric thought that, as I was carrying said child for nine months, I got the overall say. This is lovely but it’s also important that he likes what he’s calling his child! It made me more difficult that, as a teacher, I link every name to a student I teach or have taught. I’ve never understood how people can announce the same before the baby is born. I think that what they look like plays a part too. So this post is about introducing my children to you. I’ll explain how we got to settle on their names.

This is my son, Lucas Christopher Roversi, aged four years old.

Lucas in the garden in personalised tee

When we found out we were having a boy, the first thing I said was “He’s going to be nameless”. I literally disliked every boy name. With a surname like ours, I was sure I didn’t want anything ending with an ‘i’, ‘y’ or ‘i.e.‘. This ruled out a lot and, because it’s Italian, I felt like something Italian inspired would be nice. We liked “Luca” a lot, and I still do. But I taught a Luca who was….erm…challenging and his last name was Italian too so it ruled it out. So we adapted and we were sorted! When I googled what it meant, it said “bright” and “illumination”. That is perfect as he brightens up my life and every day. So “Lucas” stuck and, although other names came and went, “Lucas” was always the front runner.

We agreed that, if we ever had a son, his middle name would be Christopher after my late Dad who died when I was 17 years old. I love being able to tell Lucas why he has his middle name. It allows us to talk to him about his Grandad. However it also made choosing a first name more difficult. It had to fit with it but it was non-negotiable for me.

This little smiler is our daughter, Sienna Lily Roversi, aged six months old.

I’ve always loved loads of girls names. I felt like we were going to have the opposite problem that we had with Lucas. We would have too much choice! This time we had to factor in the Italian surname, no ‘i’ ending AND it had to fit with Lucas.

For me this meant all forenames beginning with L were out. I didn’t want them to have “matchy matchy” names. It caused a problem because I have always loved the name Lily, ever since I was at school! It was inspired by a wonderful lady called Lilian Oldroyd, my nana. She taught me to knit and bake. She put up with my Grandad Eric for many years and I adored her. I was so keen to use it, my husband agreed that we could use Lily or Lilian as a middle name depending on the forename. I was so pleased about it.

For a while I really liked Florence, so did Ric. I liked “Flo” for short but the more I said it, the more I went off it. I still think it’s a lovely name BUT I don’t like how Flo sounds in my common Wakefield accent. We were back to square one. I came across Sienna on a baby name app. When I googled it (I like to know the meaning) it only came up as a description of a colour “Reddish orange-brown, reddish brown” – brown…great *rolls eyes*.

Luckily, as I read on it also said

“It is actually an Italian name originating from the Tuscany town that shares the name. Siena, Italy is one of the best preserved medieval towns in Italy and it attracts a lot of tourism and visitors each year. This name was not commonly given as a baby name until the 1900s in Italy and around the world. The name Sienna can either mean “a reddish-orange color” or an alternate meaning is “delicate”. Source.

Italian town! Yes! Winner! My husband took a bit of time to get to used to it but it grew on him. I did laugh at the alternative meaning. There was no way that any daughter of mine would be called ‘delicate’ and this was proven when she came out weighing in at 9lb 4oz! We decided that Lily sounded better than Lilian with Sienna as a forename, the latter was too many syllables!

Having come across many children in the ten years of my life, I know how important names are.

There are certain names I hear and I immediately think “They will be a little sh*t”. I know how weird it is when names don’t suit the person. I have said to students before “You don’t look like a ……….” and it completely throws me when it comes to remembering their name!

I think that Lucas and Sienna suit their names although it’s harder to tell with Sienna. She’s still a baby and her personality is only just developing. I’m so pleased that I’ve decided to share their names and I’ve really enjoyed writing this post! It’s going to make future post writing much easier. I won’t have to think of different ways to refer to them – “my son/daughter”, “Little L”, “the boy/girl” – ha ha!

Do you share your children names? How did you come to the decision to share/not share? Is there meaning behind their names or just because you liked them? I’d love to hear about them! If you’re looking for baby names, let me know if i’ve given you some inspiration.

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  1. My daughter picked her name before her adoption. She went through a lot of names but finally came THE name. She was 5 at the time and new for sure she wanted a new name. Thanks so much for linking up at #KCACOLS. Hope you come back again next time

  2. There was a time when I decided that I wasn’t going to use their names anymore and went back and edited a bunch of posts but it just became awkward and I gave up. We actually decided on Alaina fairly quickly, I’m not sure it would have been as easy with a boy #KCACOLS

  3. Wonderful. I don’t use my son’s real name on the blog bit it has been mentioned a couple of times. My wife’s name isn’t on there either nor is my legal name. #kcacols

  4. Ah lovely names! We decided from the off not to use our daughter’s name and I’m glad we haven’t because she’s been learning about internet safety this year (she’s 8). She’s very determined not share any of her details and was relieved that I hadn’t shared hers on the blog. #kcacols

  5. I love hearing about why people chose the names they did for their children, and think it’s so lovely when there is a meaning behind them or a nod to a loved one. Both my children have middle names that are linked to family members and loved ones and it means so much to me. x #KCACOLS

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