This weeks prompt from Kirsty over at My Home Truths is -
let’s talk baby names. What are your favourites? Do you prefer traditional, contemporary or ‘out there’ names?
Before I discuss baby names in general let me first mine..
pronounced Zee..ta or Zeeda, depending on how redneck your accent is! Lol...
I wish I had some amazing story about the origin of my name, that it was a tradition or that it was because we migrated from some wonderful country, but really it just came out of a book..
From what I have been told the story goes...... I was a few days old and still didn't have a name and my mum urged my dad to pick a name for the baby and I swear he turned straight to the back. His first attempt was apparently Wilhelmina...which (I think thankfully) my mum was not a fan of, and then he found Zita....and the rest, as they say, is history. I also have what I deemed a weird middle name...Frances.. although named after my great grandmother so I could appreciate the family link there.
Growing up with a different name was really quite hard, especially when I considered my other sisters to have 'normal' names. Jody Maree (my mum's given name), Linda Anne, Kathy Lee, Renee Louise.... There was a point during those difficult teenage years where I was convinced that my parents must have disliked me at some point and that's why they gave me a stupid name! I even declared to them at one point that when I was old enough I was going to change my name to something 'normal' like Mary or Sue! (no offence to any Mary or Sue readers that I may have!). I hated that my sisters could get things with their names printed on them and me having to get something like "Special Girl" on mine!
One thing that made those teenage years with a name like mine more difficult is that kids can be so damn mean! My name, especially the way it is spelt, coupled with the fact I wasn't blessed with glowing clear skin, made me an easy target for name calling.....Zithead, Zitface, Zitwod...you get the picture..
I had heard of other people with the same name but spelt Zeta but had never found anyone with it spelt the same as miine until I was on a tour around Canada in 2005. It was a girl about the same age from Switzerland and she to had grown up with her fair share of dramas with having the name. The story went that many a pet cow in Switzerland was called Zita so she was often the butt of many a cow joke.
I was so happy a few years ago when a friend of mine sent me this book that now takes pride of place on my bookshelf beside my novels. I felt like finally I had 'made' it! Lol...
Now as an adult I can appreciated that my name is different and I think that it makes me unique, if nothing else, it's a great conversation starter when I meet new people. It often amazes me though at some of the spelling attempts people have made to spell my name....
and the other day I arrived at one of my schools to find the name
on my pigeonhole....? (What the....)
I was even asked one day what my name was short for....? (Seriously, what could Zita be short for..??)
As a teacher we come across so many weird and wonderful name - it seems gone are the traditional names and society is moving towards the unique and different, and don't even get me started on the spelling of some of these names. I have come across so many phonetically incorrect names it is hard to work out how they were possibly formed! I often wonder what the discussions and the birth registry offices must be about when they get the registration papers from the hospitals!
As a teacher there are so many names that are off limits if I ever do have the opportunity to have children. So as to not offend any readers I will not mention said names but there are certain ones I will avoid as memories flood back.
I would urge anyone naming a child to consider the name deeply, call it out your back door, hear it out loud, the full name, first middle and last, what do the initials look like when written, (a friend of mine had her baby girls name picked out until she realised the initials would spell GPS) consider what nicknames, mean names and all the ways the name could be made fun of before you settle. After all, your child is stuck with it for life!