With both boys, we didn’t share their names until their births.
With Jack, we didn’t even know the gender, so we had two names picked out and ready to go up until the very end. We knew Henry was a boy, and we settled on a name pretty quickly but decided to keep it a secret for the remaining 20ish weeks. The Husband slipped at least twice, and said the name around other people, but they claim not to have noticed.
I’ve never felt a desire to share ‘The Name’ before. Two main reasons: 1. I don’t care whether or not you like the name or your cousin’s brother’s friend from third grade had that name. It’s not your name to use on a daily basis, it’s mine. So I’m the only one that needs to like it. (And maybe my husband, he gets a vote sometimes.) Which is a long way of saying, I don’t want to think I’m soliciting opinions from the masses when it comes to naming my progeny. 2. I reserve the right to change the name up until the moment I have it written on the birth certificate. If I change the name I don’t want everyone and their mother asking me what ever happened to Bob? Because his name is Fred now and that’s all that matters. And when I’m all postpardumy and hormonal I really don’t want to try to explain to someone how inappropriate the timing is to ask me why I made the change.
But here’s the thing. Our “girl name” hasn’t really changed. I mean it changes a little here and there… but for the most part it is solid. So after Henry was born I may have shared the girl name with a few people because, to be honest, I assumed we would either have 2 boys or at some point we would have 3 boys.
Our girl name isn’t a secret, the people who already know, know. I’m also not walking around telling strangers on the street or really, anyone else, but there are some people who know what it is.
Honestly? I wish they didn’t.
Not because I want the name to be a closely guarded secret, it doesn’t bother me that people know. It just seems like a jinx. Every time someone uses the name (except for when my husband and I use it when speaking to each other) it makes me anxious. Like increased heart rate and sometimes palm sweat. There is a lot of power in a name, and when people use a name it shows familiarity. But no one has met my little uterus monster yet, not even me.
Also? It feels really presumptuous to call Hitch by her name (not because I think my friends and family are presumptuous a-holes… let me explain). It feels presumptuous to assume everything will be fine, she will be born healthy and strong and…. alive. I dont’ think of myself as a worrier, I’m not holding my breath and hoping she’s going to be okay. I have no real reason to worry (except for that heat stroke in the Grand Canyon and that pesky Lyme disease). But, using a name and sharing a name feels like taking a thing for granted. And as there are no guarantees when it comes to baby-making, I prefer to err on the side of overly cautious.
I’m certainly not attempting to say you shouldn’t share your baby’s name, as I essentially said above, your name=your call. I’m simply realizing having both shared the name and not shared the name I have a very clear preference for one method over the other.