Naming Miriam Joy

Thursday, May 9, 2013

While Tony and I decided to withhold our name choice, as well as options, most friends and family knew that our short list would be limited to names of Biblibal, Hebrew or Jewish nature. My brothers and I were named this way, and Tony and I decided to do the same when naming Isaac and Ezra. That being said, we really didn't anticipate anyone guessing our names.

The criteria for a name to be added to the list was: Biblical, not too popular, not too trendy, sounded well paired with the boys and a positive meaning. With both boys we went to the hospital with 1 1/2 girl names that we agreed on, just in case there had been a mistake. The 1/2 came from me liking a name that Tony wasn't too sold on.

To be honest, naming a daughter a strong Biblical name of our criteria proved to be quite difficult! After holding onto our "just in case" name for so long, it kind of went the way of Micah for me. While I still liked it, I just didn't care for it enough to name my child.

So, much like we did with the boys, I compiled a list. The only way a name could make it's way onto the list was to be okayed by Tony, which worked great previously. Except there aren't too many names that fit our criteria. Female Biblical names are all either entirely too familiar or extremely unique, so we found ourselves working with quite a short list.

And from that short list, we were only really working with 2-3 and the 3rd seemed to vary by the day. I grew pretty frustrated with our name options, as Tony vetoed quite a few and I had expected to do what we did with Ezra, by saying the name around the house with the boys and it didn't seem to be happening.

I just couldn't get Tony all the way on board for my name choice, which was Miriam, so I opted for some outside pressure and took a gamble. As I've mentioned more than a few times, Isaac is just a little opinionated. I went out on a limb and told him our three choices: Miriam [my favorite], Elise [Tony's] and Naomi [the 3rd choice of the day]. Happily, he decisively chose Miriam. Yay! Win for me! There were two huge problems as a result however. First, Isaac pronounces the name Mariam, shortened to Mary. Additionally, he wanted to tell everyone! Due to the desire to share, most of our family heard Mariam before she was born, but we deflected the excitement by ensuring them that while Isaac had decided, we had not.

A note about Elise. I wouldn't immediately think of it as Hebrew, and it is not Biblical, but when looking up the meaning Hebrew is listed. It's a bit of a stretch, but I think it's considered Hebrew due to it's association with Elisabeth. 

As we got closer and closer to her arrival, we knew she would not be named until she was born. Once we were certain in our uncertainty, I felt a lot of peace and gave myself a goal of having her named within 6 hours of her arrival.

I prayed that her name would be immediately clear to us, like it was when Ezra was born. With her arrival and her shocking amount of hair and resemblance to the boys, I think I was a little thrown off. She just looked like her! Unfortunately, I couldn't quite figure out who that was. She wasn't named for the first 5-10 minutes. In all honesty, I'm not sure if she was named before or after we remembered that we needed to confirm she was infact a she!

Tony is the one who first brought it up. He still favored Elise, but just asked me what my thoughts were. Completely honest, I didn't assume that just because Tony had just been subjected to my birthing her that I would obviously get my name choice. I wasn't convinced she was one or the other, but still preferred Miriam and so, she was Miriam Joy.

Miriam meaning "beloved."

Joy meaning JOY! With both boys we chose family middle names and we wanted to do the same with our daughter. Joy was our forerunner from the beginning, first because it is Tony's sister's middle name and secondly, it is my third middle name. Yup, third middle name, as my Dad always called me Leah Marie Princess Joy.

Unlike with the boys, we jumped right into using a nickname with Miriam, shortening it to Miri. It's pronounced Meeri, with a sound like mirror. We call her Miriam, Miri and Miri Joy as we often call the boys Isaac Levi and Ezra John, even when not in trouble. ;)

We absolutely adore how fitting her name is and can't wait to see God's plans for our little girl!


juliane2004 said...

I just love her name.

Do you call her Miriam or Miri or Miri-Joy?

Sarah said...

I love Miriam, especially with the nickname, but you guys couldn't go wrong with a back up like elise!

BTW, she is absolutely beautiful. Just captivating with those bright eyes.

Melissa said...

She. Is. Beautiful! And her name is too... I also love unique but not too out-there biblical names (Naomi was our top girl choice but we are having another boy... Who will be Nathan James) Miriam was my great-grandmother's name and I love that I've never heard anyone else with it and yet it's not super out there either :)

maria said...

Absolutely precious!!!! Congratulations! I didn't realize "Elise" was a biblical, Jewish or Hebrew name. I love that name too.

So...interesting story. We were at the Children's Museum a few weeks ago and saw you guys there (you were still pregnant, so just your family of four). We were in the water room and I was debating if I wanted to say hi or not (I felt like a stalker!) and then next thing I knew, you were gone. It was so funny! I felt like I had a celebrity sighting!!

Sarah Louise said...

Oh my goodness! She is SOOO beautiful! And I love hearing how you came about naming her :) A beautiful name for a beautiful baby!

Unknown said...

Omg Leah that smile of hers!!!! Melting! She's gorgeous.

Marie said...

Too, too precious. What a little sweetheart.

Audrey said...

I really needed this today! We're expecting our third little girl in July and we cannot agree on a name at all. I've been so stressed about it, but now I feel like it will be ok if we wait until she's born to decide. The only problem is, we have 6 names to decide between! haha

Erin Southwell said...

Just beautiful. I love her name and the story behind the "naming." So happy for you.

Anonymous said...

In that last picture, she looks a lot like you!

Megalamode said...

She's such a pretty little princess!!!

Aubrey said...

I just stumbled onto your blog somehow and thought it was fun that your kids are named Isaac, Ezra, and Miriam. My two are Judah and Naomi. Naomi would have been Ezra had she been a boy. Miriam was one of our back-up names for a girl, in case Naomi didn't look like a Naomi. If we have another girl, Miriam will definitely be on our short list. Isaac is also on my short list for another boy, though I'd probably use Ezra first. You have beautiful kids and it was fun finding someone with similar naming style.


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