Thursday, April 2, 2009

So, about that name...

Okay, we kept it (mostly) a secret for months. And while it wasn't easy for me. It was even more difficult for Kai. (There were plenty of moments when she told people, "No matter what I can't tell you Traveler's name, okay?")

And it was as hippy as we promised, right? When everyone kept saying "it can't be as bad as Apple" I kept wondering if maybe they were going to take that back when they heard it. But, Traveler Oakes Kekoa Loving it is. And the more I look at this little boy the more it seems to fit.

So, where did it come from? And why on Earth did we choose that name?

Well, I should start by saying that none of our kids have "normal" names. That's my fault, mostly. But once you start down the path of "different" names there is no going back for any of your kids.

One night when I was about 20 weeks pregnant, we were talking about names for the baby and Thomas said something about needing to find a good name for the little Traveler I was carrying. And something about the nickname struck us. It was a little Pilgrim's Progress, I admit, but there was something about it that just seemed to work.

If you ask Thomas, his official answer about what the name means to him is a more spiritual meaning. Something along the lines of Sojourner. He is a traveler in this world on a path that leads him to someplace bigger.

If you ask me, my official answer is that...well, I thought it sounded cool and kind of poetic. Yeah, I'm deep like that.

His middle name, Oakes, came about out of a bit of accidental tradition. Kai is actually our oldest daughter's middle name (her first name is Arema). And in Hawaiian, Kai means calm or gentle ocean. Ivy, obviously, has botanical origins. So, we had this nature theme going on in their names. And we thought we'd do the same with this baby. But, nature names for boys can be tricky. Particularly when you combine it with the hippy-tastic name Traveler. We wanted something strong and solid. Oakes was a character in a work of fiction Thomas has been working on and it really to fit the bill.

Finally, as a matter of Hawaiian tradition, all of our kids have a Hawaiian middle name. In the past, it has been a name chosen by Thomas' mom and given to our children as a blessing. But, since Thomas' mom was the only one in his immediate family who was actually Hawaiian and she passed away last year it was up to Thomas to take the job of picking the Hawaiian middle name for our son. And he chose Kekoa because it means "the brave one." It seemed a fitting "blessing" to give our son. I love it.

So, while we had some people questioning our choice of names (you know who you are and we love you anyways) the more we considered it the more we absolutely loved the name.

Yes, it is different. And we've gotten many strange looks since he's been born and we've told friends, relatives, and total strangers the name. But, it fits. It is him. And I wouldn't change it for the world.


Peanut said...

I love the name! And I even more love the reasons for each name.

I grew up with an unusual name (yes, more unusual than Peanut!) and there were times it was hard as a kid because I was so shy, but now as an adult, I love it. Makes me feel unique :)

Tiffany @ Lattes And Life said...

I've gotten grief for each one of my kid's names. I always end up finding a compromise....I start out waaay out in weird name land...and end up just somewhere to the side of normal by the time the baby comes. I just love unique names. My oldest is Caitlyn..and I SWEAR that wasn't as popular 16 years ago as it ended up becoming. Then she named my son Aiden...which again wasn't super popular until he was born. So I think I start trends, you see.

When I was pregnant w/ first choices were Heaven or Freedom. I was 15. What can I say? :-)

Carey said...

I think it's beautiful, and the history behind it is a great story. My daughter was named after a basketball team. How deep is that?