I’ve always had a weird obsession with names. If ever anyone told me they were expecting, one of the first questions I’d always find myself asking was, “do you have any names yet?”. Similarly, if I hear of new babies, my first question tends to be, “what have they called him / her?”. I can’t put my finger on exactly why this is, but when Mr Lighty and I found out we were expecting Baby Lighty, choosing a name was something that I was really excited about.
It turned out that we had actually had Baby Lighty’s name for years. It was inspired by the leading man in a novel by Emily Giffin – later turned into a film – that I’d read years ago (long before the TV series of the same name came about – Mrs Lighty didn’t even realise there was a TV series by the same name, let alone the fact that it was about a serial killer!), and his middle names are those of two of our late Grandads. Perfect!
Or so we thought…
We knew that the choice for our first name wouldn’t go down well with everyone. So we simply didn’t tell anyone our name choices, and also decided on a few alternatives (you know, just in case he didn’t look like the name we’d chosen). We also had to think up some girl names, as despite Mrs Lighty’s gut instinct telling her that Baby Lighty was a boy, we were very much Team Yellow and looking forward to our surprise at the end of all of that pushing!
We thought that by not naming names, as it were, we would get away with not having comments and opinions forced on us, and that people would just learn to love the name as they fell in love with Baby Lighty.
Oh how wrong we were! It turns out, even if you don’t name names, people will still comment – often derogatively – and force their opinions on you. To the point whereby at about day 4 of his life, Mrs Lighty questioned Mr Lighty as to whether they should change Baby Lighty’s name. A name that, as it turned out, even after picking possible alternatives, we had gone back to as our favourite and had therefore had for years.
To give you an example of why we started questioning our choice, these are just a few of the comments we have received, and are still receiving, 5 months after Baby Lighty’s birth:
- “At least you’ve chosen middle names that we like.”
- “I’m going to call him by his middle name as it’s much nicer.”
- “Was your sister [Mrs Lighty] on something when she chose that name?!”
- “What made you pick that?!”
- “These funny names you young people come up with nowadays!”
- “And I thought [Baby Lighty’s name] was a bad name, but I’ve recently heard worse…”
And my all time favourite:
- “What is this breed of dog you’ve had?!”
So you can see why, had Mr and Mrs Lighty not already announced the name to the world, or at least Facebook, we would have considered changing it. It got to the point where when old women would coo over him in his pram when out and about and would ask his name, I almost wouldn’t want to tell them for fear of the comments I might receive.
Yet it was a name that ticked all of our boxes: we wanted something just a little unusual (as I’ve always maintained that having a slightly unusual names helps you to go further in life) but not so unusual that Baby Lighty would hate it. We also wanted a name that could be shortened. And the other criteria, that was stipulated by Mr Lighty, unsurprisingly, was that if Baby Lighty was a boy, he wasn’t to be named the same as any of the members of the Arsenal squad (which ruled out one of Mrs Lighty’s favourite names, Theodore)!
And do you know what? After five months I think I’ve made peace with the fact that some people won’t like his name. You can’t please everyone, and we knew that, or otherwise we would’ve shared our name ideas when Mrs Lighty was pregnant, wouldn’t we? And I can’t imagine Baby Lighty being called anything other than what he’s called now.
So what was this crazy name that we picked?!
Dexter Albert George.
Not too crazy after all, eh?!
Proud to be linking up with: