I never used to think much about what names meant. I knew that in the Bible, a person's name was very significant, that it basically told a short, one-word story about that person. But today? It isn't often that you hear someone's name and then nod knowingly, as if they have just revealed their character or destiny to you.
Now, for the most part, parents just pick what they like. When I was pregnant with Asher, I tossed around all sorts of names that had been on my unofficial name list for a while. I couldn't have told you what any of them meant. But then Kris suggested the name Asher, which he told me meant "happy." The meaning is actually what sold me on the name. I really liked the thought of giving him a name which would hopefully describe his personality. Boy does it ever!
Now don't get me wrong. That child has his moments for sure! Kris and I joke to each other when he is in the midst of a whine or freak-out fest "is he always this happy?" because that is what we hear all the time from people. The answer is of course "no!" He is not always happy, but the usual tone of his disposition is.
He smiles and waves at most people he encounters, strangers and friends alike. He belly laughs when he gets tickled or startled. He talks and sings all day long, to me and to himself. He reads to himself and puts the book down for a moment to fully take in the joke he apparently just came across. He will pause his moment of utter despair to show you his tongue or tell you what the puppy-dog says and then return to the fit.
So I think that there is something to this name thing. Granted, I am basing this hypothesis on the results of an incredibly small test group, but still...I feel a little pressure now. Should we name this baby "Asher II" or "Asherina" a la George Foreman? That would probably get a little confusing.
Any name I like now has to pass the "meaning" test. And since I am very picky about names, this cuts the list of possibilities way down. The criteria is not too trendy, preferably not on the top 100 list, nothing starting with "Ky" or ending with "ly", no friends with that name, and now, must mean something positive. Ugh. This will be a challenge.