Naming You

We have a court date.

A date when we will stand in front of a judge and promise to care for you. And you will be ours forever in the eyes of the law. Later, we will have a dedication ceremony shoring up the spiritual commitment to this parenthood proposition. But first, the legal side of making you ours.

So in a week or so your name will legally be set. Forever. And we will get another birth certificate to add to the one you got in the hospital, and later, your first little social security card. Paper trails through the forest of life.

In the whole journey to welcoming you, your name is the one and only solitary piece that we had any sort of control over. Control is SO overrated. Adventure and uncertainty only means that your entrance into this world and into our lives was divinely directed. So it is with much thought and planning that we have chosen all three of your names.

Your first name is one that we fell in love with. Spelled uniquely from two cookie cutter parents to give you a bit of distinction. Happy, friendly, and welcoming enough so that I can't even say it without smiling.

Your middle name is that of my grandpa. A man of character, hard work, and tender heart: we hope you can emulate him though you will never get to meet this side of heaven. It is also a name that is meaningful to your birth family, giving you a connection to honor your biological beginnings.

Your second middle name.
I never planned on giving you a third name.
But like a lot of things I never planned on, it's the unexpected that brings depth and weight to your little life already. In the years of waiting for you we had the other two names set, written on our hearts, and on the walls of your nursery. As it turned out, for your first two months in this world we weren't sure if you were really and truly going to be ours, and we couldn't name a baby that we might not get to call ours. We just couldn't. So for those two months you were technically Baby Boy. But of course you can't leave it at something so cold as you cuddle and coo over a warm, floppy, snuggily, sweet smelling baby. Your foster family gave you a name. A name meaning God's gift. Because that's what you were. What you are.

Even after the two months of "maybe" were over and we prepared to bring you home, we decided to keep that name, sliding it into third place. Of course, we could have dropped it altogether pretending that the name, those months of waiting did not exist. Skip the anxiety and only talk about the happy. But those weeks happened. They were important. Those months of worry and fear and uncertainty should be remembered, casting this present reality into brilliant focus.

Now that now every time I see your second middle name, I'm reminded of where we came from.
Of those months of uncertainty and the harrowing dance between having and not having you in our lives.
Of his timing and care for us as we died in daily desperation.
Of God's providence and gracious abundance is giving you to us.

And on that court documentation next week, your Social Security card, school registrations, permission slips, doctor's notes, driver's license,  diplomas, marriage license, and all the other important and not so important papers of life. In big life changing moments and the mundane every day. When I will see your name. Your beautiful name. I will not only see the name we liked, the name of your families, the name you carried your first two months.

I will see God's hand in your life.
I will see the two months it took for your first parents to be absolutely sure of their decision to place you with us.
I will remember
So tenderly and intimate,
that naming you was not a chance to call you mine.
It was a chance to acknowledge that you, my sweet baby boy, are HIS.


Amy said…
so very beautiful.