Showing posts from May, 2016

Much in a name

Naming a child is one of the greatest responsibilities a parent has. Short of some dramatic action by its bearer, a person is stuck with a name for life and all the nominative determinist consequences that flow from it. While opening it up to the whims of the democratic process was one option ( Baby McBabyface? ) and engaging the services of a baby name consultant was another, Melanie and I opted to take on the responsibility ourselves. Our criteria? We wanted a name that suited a child as well as the adult she will become. We wanted a name that conveyed both warmth and gravitas. We wanted a name that carried some broader meaning, within our family and beyond it. We wanted a name that was easy to say and easy to spell. And we wanted a name that sounded good, in its entirety and when each part stood on its own. For us, it wasn’t just the given names that needed to be chosen. With Melanie and I each keeping our family names when we got married, our daughter’s family name also

The joys of new life

As I sit writing this post my soundscape is filled with the contented murmurings of my daughter as she sleeps in the bassinet beside my bed. During a point in each sleep cycle she becomes quite animated, her breathing quick and irregular, her little palms flailing in front of her face and her lips letting out wordless utterances of agony or ecstasy. Such is the way with the dreams of a newborn child, where the realness of the experience manifests itself in the physiology of the dreamer. Just what a newborn dreams about is hard to imagine - perhaps a pleasant dream about the cosiness of the womb or a nightmare about her sudden exit from it. My daughter Amelia entered the world just two weeks ago. Every moment since then has been one of bliss for my wife Melanie and I, even the moments when Amelia's contented murmurings metamorphosise into pained screams from deep in her lungs. As parents of a newborn we can quite happily while away the hours with Amelia, cuddling up and talk