Saturday, July 10, 2010

My Stevie

Dear Stevie,
Dad and I rode the tandem bike to the beach yesterday. It was super crowded, so everyone was forced to sit basically right on top of each other. While we were laying out in the sun, I couldn't help but overhear the conversation going on less than a foot away from me. It was three girls, right around my age. They were laying on their stomachs, talking all about what they were going to name their future children. The brunette said, "I'm going to name my first boy Jackson, but I don't know, I don't want anyone to call him Jack." The freckled red-head said, "My favorite girl name is Aubrey," to which the blond replied, "No way! My girl name is Audrey!" Then the brunette said, "My girl name is Addison, but it's also my friend Lisa's girl name, so I guess we'll just see who has a baby girl first!" Then they all laughed.

Oh, if only it were that simple, I thought. I have had that exact same conversation, you know "the name talk," about a million times with my girlfriends. We've spent many nights, over the years, giddily talking about our future babies and what we were going to name them. When I was a little girl, I declared my favorite names were "Biss and Buss" (don't ask me how I came up with those, I have no idea!). When I was in elementary school, I decided I was going to name my future baby Felicity, after my beloved American Girl Doll. I had no favorite boy name then, because, well, I hated boys and there was no way I was going to have one. I went through a Payton stage in high school, then had a pretty long ride with Hannah. I had my heart set on Ruby pretty much all through college, until I met one too many Rubies, and decided it had become too popular.

When I got pregnant with you, "the name talks" went into over-drive. I was no longer fantasizing about what I would name some future baby of mine, I was actually deciding what I was going to name the real, live little baby growing in my tummy. It was so much fun! From the moment I got that positive pregnancy test, Dad and I talked about your name almost everyday. If you were a boy, I was set on Charlie. Dad tried his hardest to get me to consider the names Wolf and Flint, and his favorite, Ernest (he was not kidding either!), but I would not budge. At first, we thought we would name you Lucy if you were a girl. Then I heard something about Stevie Nicks on the radio and it hit me. I got home and said to Dad, "what about Stevie for a girl? Like after my dad." He loved it. From then on, he wouldn't consider any other name for you but Stevie. At first I had my doubts, "are you sure it's not too weird?" I would ask him. Eventually, though, I grew to love it. When people would ask, "so what names are you thinking for the baby," I'd say, "If it's a boy, he'll be Charlie. If it's a girl, she'll be Stevie...after my dad. You know, like Stevie Nicks." Sometimes I'd get some pretty weirded-out looks, or the occasional, "why don't you just name her Stephanie and call her Stevie as a nickname?" But I didn't care. It was perfect.

I even kept track of our name choices in an iPhone application!

The day we found out you were a little girl, I started calling you Stevie. I loved that I no longer had to refer to you as "it," or "the baby." You were Stevie. My little Stevie.

At the hospital, after we had found out that you had died, I remember someone asking me, "is her name still going to be Stevie, or are you going to save it for your next baby?" I'll admit, I thought about it for a second. I thought if I name this baby Stevie, I'll never have a daughter with my favorite name. I'll never be able to say, "this is my daughter, Stevie. She's named after her grandpa." It will be wasted.

But the thought of calling you anything but Stevie seemed so, so wrong. You were not a Lucy or a Hannah or a Ruby or a Felicity. You were, and are, my Stevie. Now I realize, even though I don't have a living daughter to introduce as Stevie, I do, and always will have a little girl named Stevie. My dad does, and always will, have a little granddaughter named after him. The name Stevie, was in no way "wasted" on you.

Dad and I have already had a few of "the name talks" since you died. When we talk about what we might name our future baby, I always say it out loud and make sure it sounds good with Stevie. Because you will always be our first child. You'll always be a part of our family. Someday, when we (hopefully) have a Charlie and Lucy and a Henry (our top three names at the moment!), we will also have a Stevie. When people ask me, "what are your kids' names?" I will tell them, "Charlie, Lucy, Henry...and Stevie."

I bet you're one of the only Stevies in Heaven, aren't you baby? Make sure whenever you tell someone your name up there, you also tell them how you were named after your grandpa. I think he would like that.

Love you so much,

Readers/babyloss moms: What's the story behind your baby's name? Did you name your baby his/her "original" name? If so, did you ever think of naming them something different? Have you already had "the name talk" for future babies? Share! :)


mommy4boys said...

Caleb and Lucas were names I really fell in love with. Not sure why. Their middle names were family names. For some odd reason we had chosen not to share their middle names with anyone until after they were born. When we lost both boys, we decided not to use their middle names. IT seemed right to keep them mine and Willy's secret and let the twins have their first names. If we have another boy(s), we will use the twins' middle names as theirs.
I couldn't imagine not using the names we always had picked out for them. And I hope that we one day have a chance to use their middle names for their little brother(s). It would be a great way to honor them.

Anonymous said...

Ran across your blog for the first time. So sorry for your loss. Yesterday was my due date before we miscarried and it was difficult. Time helps, but it doesn't forget.

Glo said...

I really liked Gavin. It was a contender when I was carrying big brother. It also went well with Brennan's name (IMO). Gavin's middle name is Daddy's William. I thought it right. I was so connected to Gavin because I carried him. DH wasn't able to be that close. But by giving Gavin his name kind of brings them closer....I think. I have vaguely thought of names for a subsequent baby. I haven't come up with anything I really love.

Angela said...

We had such a hard time with names. We knew what we wanted for a boy, but had no idea what we wanted for a girl. I was so set on my first being a boy. Honestly, I didn't even want a girl. When we had our u/s and found out it was a girl I started calling her Madeline, because that's the name I thought I wanted. Then for a while I wanted Ava Grace, but the husband didn't like it. Then I settled on Charlotte and decided to call her that for a few days. Before too long we were both calling her Charlotte and eventually my husband let me use Ava as her middle name. If I have another girl I have thought about using Ava for her first name, I just love it so much, but I haven't discussed it with my husband.

Anonymous said...

Valentina was not a name we have a cool story for lol. It was hard for us to agree on a name (Valentina was almost named Dakota!) back when we didn't know gender... We narrowed it down to either Valentina or Dorian, all from looking through zillions of baby name websites almost daily. When we got the news that she was a she, Valentina it was. : ) I would say out of the 1000 or so people who we told her name, maybe 2 people looked weirded out. Everyone else LOVED it. I have heard often that its the most beautiful name someone has ever heard. : )

It makes me sad that we won't get to use her name, in the sense that I will never call the name out the back door to come in to dinner, and I will never embroider it on her clothing or letter jacket in high school, and - oh god- I will never hear a man say "I take you, Valentina..." :tears: But for such a perfect name, it is attached forever to a perfect soul, untainted from this world.

We talk baby names occasionally- hubby confessed the other day that it makes him sad. We've thought that if we have another girl, her name must be just as beautiful as Valentina so they match. : ) We have ideas, but honestly, its a lot easier to talk boy names than girl names. For now.

Melissa said...

Haha, I have that same app.

I remember, the night before my appointment at the cardiologist, I was fiddling with phone apps while trying to fall asleep. We had just found out we were having a boy, and didn't have any names.

After we found out the diagnosis, we were determined to find a good, meaningful name. I wrote more about all of that on my blog.

Elaine said...

Hubby and I couldn't decide on a boy name and I was convinced I was having a boy since early on in the pregnancy. So, in secret I was calling him Blaine the entire time. Then when he died I just couldn't change it. There's not really a reason for the name, just like it and my name is Elaine so it's kind of like he's named after me. Blaine translates to "yellow" so of course that is now my favourite colour. For future babies we are still at a standstill for boys. I have one picked out though and will again use it in secret!! For girls there's no argument. We know the exact name if we are to have a girl.

Julie said...

This was hard for me. We had not decided on a name, although we had narrowed it down to about 6 or 8. Kenny was NOT on the list. My husband Ken is actually Kenny to me and to his family, although everyone else calls him Ken. His middle name is Junior, which he finds very redneck, and he has a Roman numeral after his name. For both those reasons, he's always hated his name and didn't want to pass it on for a son to deal with.

However, when Kenny died and we had to choose a name on the spot, it just seemed right. After all, Kenny won't have to grow up being embarrassed by his middle name or irritated by the Roman numeral. And if he can't grow up with us, then at least he can take his daddy's name with him.

I am happy that we used the name, but I have a weird feeling when we make comments like, "if Kenny had lived..." because if he HAD lived, he wouldn't be Kenny! We have not talked baby names since Kenny died.

The only name I've ever really had my heart set on was that if we had a girl, I'd want to name her Elisabeth, and call her Betsy. Ken is NOT on board with that, so it won't happen.

I'm glad you went ahead and used Stevie's name. It is a beautiful, unique name, and a lot of people will remember her. I know I will never forget her.

Danae said...

Our first baby was always destined to have a "B" name. All of Adam's siblings have the initials AKS, all of my family has the middle inital D. We wanted something "cool" too. We knew we wanted at LEAST 2 we decided they would be B & C, so we could be ABCD!

Bailey's name was actually chosen because I saw the name of a girl that checked us out at Wal-Mart one day and I loved it. I considered different variations of spelling, but ultimately the one we chose is the one that stuck. Her middle name is the same as mine, as my middle name is the same as my mom's. We wanted to carry on the tradition. There was never a question of changing the name when everything went sour. She was always Bailey. If Bailey would have ended up a boy, she would have been Blaine. We never committed to a middle name for a boy though...I think we knew she was a girl all along...and until we found out Bailey was a girl, she was referred to as "BB" which stood for Baby B.

We have talked names for next time...briefly. Our next baby will be "C". We are still going to continue on the tradition. Even though our "B" isn't with us anymore, she is still a very important part of our family, and always will be.

car said...

We didn't decide on a boy name until I was about 37 weeks and we never did agree on a girl name. (We didn't know we were having a boy) I was just reading a baby name book for the 100th time and said "What about Reid?" I was a little worried about too much alliteration (our last name starts with R) but it went perfectly with DD's name so Reid it was. As soon as he was delivered he was Reid so we never even considered changing it when he was declared dead 20 minutes later. We didn't give him a middle name as we wanted to name him after a family member and it didn't feel right anymore.

As for future kids, there won't be any discussions until after they are well on their way to arriving (I may be thinking about it, but I know better than to even bring it up with hubby). I know that we will be tossing out all the names we seriously considered for Reid while I was pregnant, even the girl ones, because they are somehow connected to him and his loss.

rebecca said...

We had actually been considering two other names & then after she was born my husband remembered me saying back when we had first started dating 9 some years ago that I loved the name Lillian & had always wanted to name my first daughter that & would call her Lily for short. It just seemed so right in that moment for both of us.

Isn't it funny how much you think back on those old conversations with girlfriends before life was so complicated...we really had no idea did we? Probably for the best we didn't know how difficult life would really become some day.

Brie said...

Actually, we were one of'Those couples" who decided to change the name last minute when we learned that i would be delivering a child that would not grow up before our very eyes. We had been set on carla, Carly for short...and her middle name would be Denise, after my sister's middle name...but when she was born..i was okay with naming her Carla, but my husband decided that he didn't want to "waste" the we gave her the middle name as her first, therefore I have a Denise...who will hopefully have a big sister some day named Carla Denise, and the middle name will have a whole new meaning.

Lindsay said...

Since we didn't lose Ayden before he was born, we got to see him grow into his name. When choosing names, we went through so, so many, but when you find "the one" you just KNOW that it was meant to that specific child. When I hit 15 weeks, I felt pretty strongly that we were indeed having a boy, so I decided right then and there, if it was a boy, his name would be Ayden Brooks. As soon as we saw that he was indeed a boy, the name immediately matched. Oddly enough, I worked at a school called Ayden-Grifton at the time, so all of my students would ask me why I was naming him after the town/school. Honestly, it was a freak coincidence. I had always liked the name Aiden, but I wanted to spell it differently. For some reason the "i" bothered me. So, we made it Ayden. When he was born, it took some getting used to to actually call him by his name, but as he grew and formed his sweet, fun personality that he had, the name fit him so well. He IS Ayden. It was my absolute favorite name, and his middle name is his dad's middle name. I always loved Jeremy's middle name and found it so fitting to use part of his name with our first child...especially since he was a boy. After we lost Ayden, I felt a little like you did....we gave him our favorite name...and now we don't have him here to even introduce him to people or call him by his name. For a long time, we didn't know what to do about our future kids' names. Do you use part of Ayden's name? Do we connect them somehow? Or do we keep his name separate...just for him? We decided that ALL of our children would share a name so that when we talked to them about Ayden, they would make the connection and feel close to their big brother. All of our kids will have their dad's middle name - Brooks for the boys, Brooke (or Brooks...might still keep it) for the girls. We also want all of our kids' first names to end in "en" or at least that sound, so they sound similar.

We've chosen Collen for our 2nd son, and I do love that name....but there's just something about picking out your first child's name. It's such a magical, special time...everything is new and everything holds such a special meaning. Ayden will always be my I'm sure Stevie will always be yours.

Dana said...

We had a girl name picked out right away and a boy name shortly after. I had also been thinking of what I would name my babies from the time that I was about 10.

We thought we would call him Evan for awhile, it was the only one that we could agree on (DH didn't like the other boy names I did - Max, Sam, Ben - Ben was already used by my sister though). I wasn't completely sold on using Evan though as my cousin's name is Evan and I didn't want our other relatives to be hurt and think that we were naming him after that cousin (who I like, but I really don't know him that well).

A few weeks after agreeing on Evan, I mentioned the name Jacob and we both liked that one alot. So it was between Evan and Jacob. By this time we knew we were having a boy and we just starting calling him Evan most of the time. We still weren't positive which one we would use though.

Then suddenly on May 31, we found out that he would be born that day or the next. Instead of 4 months to decide, we had just hours. We had planned to give him my Dad's name as his middle name (but we hadn't told anyone this, and still haven't. If we had a girl, we would have given her my Mom's name as a middle name). For some reason I thought that we could only chose one of those names since we were giving him my Dad's name. Our minister came to visit and I told him that we didn't know which of the 2 names we had chosen to name him (but didn't tell him about using my Dad's name). He just said "why don't you use both" and suddenly I realized that we could, that we didn't have to give him my Dad's name (I felt a little guilty about this....was I not giving him my Dad's name because he wasn't going to live?) I just really wanted to use both of the names we had chosen I think, I couldn't decide which one to give up and I knew that we would never use either name for our future babies. Also, my sister had a boy 2 years ago and asked my Dad if she should use his name or our maiden name as one of Ben's middle names and my Dad wanted her to use our maiden name.

I just didn't know what to do. We finally decided to name him Evan since that is what we called him the most. A little while later, my husband and I were alone and I just wasn't comfortable with naming him Evan anymore. It just didn't seem to fit, it wasn't right for him. I also didn't want to hear the name at all of our family get togethers when my cousin was there which would remind me more that our Evan was missing. But more than that, Jacob just seemed like the right name. I said to my husband that I wasn't satisfied with the name Evan and wanted to use Jacob instead. He agreed, especially after I said that another big reason for the name Jacob was because it is a biblical name and we knew that he had already gone to Heaven.

So we named him Jacob and don't have any regrets. We can't even imagine calling him Evan now.

Lori said...

I love this post...and the comments...and think I'll have to write about names some myself!

Matthew was always Matthew. God told me so. No middle name...just Matthew. John was named after his granddad--John Marvin. Thankfully his parents weren't fond of Marvin, so he was John Michael.

We didn't want a junior, but I loved the idea of carrying the John M. Ennis tradition in his family...hence, John Matthew Ennis....

And then I looked up what those names meant...God is Gracious (John) and Gift of God (Matthew)...after 10+ years of begging God to be parents...what more fitting names?

Anonymous said...

We had several pregnancy losses, and only one was far enough along to have her name ready. She kept it, Michelle, she remains our oldest child.

2 years later we had a failed adoption. (Seriously, I could not make this journey up if I tried.) Our son was in our arms for 2 weeks before everything fell apart. He was Dennis Jacob. Dennis is an Americanization of his birth name, Jacob was one we really wanted for a boy.

We went on, after 4 years, to have two bio daughters. I guess we're lucky that our 2 surviving kids are of a different gender than the 'lost' sibling before them, so we didn't have to make this choice about names. The girl's names fit them, and are perfect for them, and have meaning that is special for them. It doesn't take away from the love I have for the littlest babies I lost, or the love and grief I still feel for the child who is living but not mine. Time has been very healing, and I can think about all of them and feel peace and happiness now. The girls use Dennis' bedroom furniture and play with toys he recieved at a baby shower. And it's OK, it's good even.

Melanie said...

I had waited until we found out if the baby was a boy or a girl before we had picked a name out. So I waited to buy a baby name book until we found out I was having a girl. I went through it myself and picked out about 10 names that I would consider and then shared them with my husband. He helped me narrow it down to about three names. We both ended up loving the name Isabella. We also loved the name Araceli. I had felt pretty sure at that point that was the name we were going to pick. When we found out that she was unlikely to survive when I lost the amniotic fluid, I did consider for a second naming her something else. But I realized quickly that she is Isabella and I couldn't change it now. I felt like I would never be comfortable naming a future child Isabella because she was always Isabella to us whether she was going to be here with us or not. So we went through with naming her Isabella Araceli.

My husband and I haven't talked alot about future baby names. Boy names still have not come up at all. So I would still be without a boys name. My husband told me a few weeks back that he thinks I would resent my future baby for not being Isabella. I told him that I wouldn't and that I would love to be a mommy to an Emilee(just an example I threw out). My husband ended up saying that he he really likes that name. I do too. It was in the top names we had considered when looking for a name for Isabella. I'm sure we won't talk about names again until I am (hopefully) pregnant again.

Annie said...

Jeremiah, born 1/5, got his name from the scripture Jeremiah 1:5 "Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee". This was my sister's suggestion - we had originally chosen the name Calvin. We were going to use Calvin if we had another boy. We did have another boy but he was born dead, too. We named him Miles, a name from my side of the family, which I sometimes regret because my family was so unsupportive when he died. If I ever get pregnant again I will be too terrified to think of names until the child is born.

Anonymous said...

My daughter is Lucie. She is a healthy three year old girl and indeed a huge blessing.

Lucie was a misdiagnosed miscarriage, found with a beating heart when I had my pre D & C ultrasound.

Lucie was always going to be a Lucy, so much so that even before we were married, my husband and I used the password Lucy on our first bank account together.

While on honeymoon in Paris, we kept seeing it written as Lucie and my husband especially fell for this. I am half Dutch and so it also fitted with my heritage - Lucie it was.

Kristen, Stevie is a such a gorgeous name. Thank you for sharing this and every other part of your journey.


Amanda said...

I honestly thought that no one else had this thought process. I never spoke up because it just felt so wrong to think it, but I really (for about 5 minutes) felt as if I'd wasted my favorite name on The Boy. I knew in my heart he could never ever be anything but Gavin, but for a few moments, when things were at their worst...I was just sad I'd never have a Gavin to introduce people to, I'd just be able to tell his story. I can't even tell you how much better I feel about a moment 4 1/2 years ago, that I'd all but just forgotten about...

Antoinette said...

I wrote the story behind her name in this post...ironically i had just reached my 7th week...Stevie is in LOVE with her name, and its very special that she honored your dad....I chose her name because it was rare too..I do not know many ALyssa's and NONE around where I am from...Of course, once she past i heard the name a lot more frequently on tv, and a few on FB but I am happy to know she is unique in my eyes...I picked her middle name after my sister...but HER name is a cute story..enjoy reading it!!

Maggie said...

I think Stevie is just perfect for Stevie!!! :) We never thought of naming Alexandra anything else. If it was a boy, it was going to be Alexander, so I guess Alexandra was just a natural thing for a girl. Plus, it seemed like such a good, strong name. I always wanted an "Alex". :) And her middle name was given the day she was born. I said, I want it to be Grace. Up until then, I had no clue, but that day, Grace stuck. :)

Nicole said...

We weren't told 100% that Avery was a girl until after she was born, so while I was still pregnant, we hadn't fully decided on a name. If she had been a boy, she would have been Jude. And for a girl, we were being creative and uni-sex and were considering Sawyer, but were afraid of what others would think. When we found out she'd died, we knew we had to pick a name. I just felt in my heart that she was definitely a girl. We didn't even talk about whether Jude was still in if the ultrasound tech was wrong and she was a boy. But we knew she didn't feel like a Sawyer. Avery had been my original favorite name, that for some reason I had started questioning about halfway into my pregnancy. But we knew she was Avery. And now, like you said, I'm sad that I can't call out my most favorite name (probably for the past 3 or 4 yrs now) and see a sweet little girl come running, but I am so glad that it belongs to her. There's no other name I'd rather have tattooed on my wrist. :)

B. Wilson said...

I know I'm a little late in the game, but I just lost my son on December 5th. I've been reading all of your posts (in order) like I do daily-- you understand me obsessing over other baby loss blogs... I've read your posts about those.

On to the name. We named our son Andrew Steven. Andrew because we loved the name and Steven after his grandfather-- their first grandchild. I had those some "guilty" feelings about wasting the name. Could I use it again? Would it be a legacy we carry? I felt awful that his first grandchild, name after him, would be dead before he had a chance to meet him. He never did meet him (they live states away).

What's next with the name? Not sure. I think I'll blog about that soon, too.

Thanks for this. Man is this a rough road to travel. It will never be over either. It's like graduating or something-- you hit a finish line. This, never...and I'm not sure I ever want to because that means I would forget my son. At full term, it's hard to forget him and all the beauty he was when I first saw him.

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