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When we decided on Jz’s name, the conversation went like this:

Michael: So the baby is going to be born in about an hour, we should talk about a name.

Me: How about Jz?

Michael: Okay.

Seriously, that is exactly how it went. In North America, we are pretty lucky when it comes to naming options: we can chose almost anything we want. So much so that our boys have unusual names, not because they are trendy or spelled funny, but because we chose traditional names and most other parents did not. Not one of the
kids in their class share my kids’ names, but there a lot kids with similar modern names, each spelled uniquely.


This is not the case everywhere in the world. A lot of countries have very strict restriction on what names can
be registered. New Zealand and Sweden have restrictions that prevent names that are offensive or obviously not appropriate as first names. In Denmark parents must choose from a list of 7000 approved names or have
it approved by a government agency which rejects 15-20% of all name applications. The most common reasons for rejection are creative spelling or names where you can’t tell the gender of the child. In Japan, names must be able to be read and written in Japanese, while in China the name must be readable by a computer scan of the baby’s national id card.


So what is in a name? A name is a gift that we give our children, a gift which they will most likely carry with
them the rest of their life. Too many people now a days don’t consider past the cute baby stage when naming their child Legolas, or the possible frustration at always having the name Chaitlynn spelled wrong her entire life. They see naming their child as an extension of themselves, a reflection on them. But a name is not a tribute to parent or an accessory for mom to trot out along with a Prada diaper bag. It issomething that becomes part of the child, something that follows them and something the parents will some day have to justify and explain.


Read more like this at www.fourlittlezs.com

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