Tuesday, September 30, 2014

What's in a Name


Who you callin' Rose?
I kind of feel bad for my daughter.  Not because there's anything wrong with her, but just because she's the second kid and she's been getting the short end of the stick since before she was born.

Take, for instance, the story of how we chose her name.
 
When you're pregnant with your first kid, you have all the time in the world to lay around with your spouse discussing the merits of every name in the New Jewish Baby Names book.

Chris: How about Xander?

Me: There was a Xander in my kindergarten class who picked his nose and ate it.  What about Zeke?

Chris: All the kids in his class will just call him "Zeke the geek".  Asher?

Me: Nope.  Ex-boyfriend.  Small penis.

Chris: Bodhi?

Me: Ex.  Not-so-small penis.

Chris: Ethan?

Me: Nah --

Chris: Not another ex?

Me: I would never sleep with someone named Ethan.  Which is the problem.

... and so it went, until we finally agreed on Noah.  By the time our fetus had a gestational age of 25 weeks, he had a name.  No exes, no bad associations, and, as it turns out, not a small penis.

With the Little Lady, on the other hand, we didn't have time to read the baby name book.  There were no leisurely discussions about names, no exciting evenings spent imagining the amazing life our unborn child would undoubtadly lead.  Once and awhile one of us would send a random text message to the other tossing out a name idea:



While picking up Italian take out:



This went on for nine months.  When I went into labor we were no closer to choosing a name than we had been before our daughter matured out of the zygote stage.  When people asked us if we had a name picked out we would say we had some ideas ,but nothing concrete.  We were going to wait and see, positive that the minute she came out we would just look at her and know right away which name would be most fitting.

That was a great plan.  Except for the fact that it didn't work.

You know what newborn babies look like?  Small, withered little old people with squinty eyes.  They don't look like a Zachary or a Claire or a Naomi, and this one didn't have a penis - small or large - to warrant Bodhi or Asher.

We probably would've continued to hem and haw about what to name our second born if it hadn't been for the hospital staff reminding us every 20 minutes that we had to choose a name for her birth certificate before we could go home.  Oh, sure, legally you can take your unnamed child home with you, but then you have to go through all this ridiculous red tape when you finally do have a name picked out.  Ain't nobody got time for that.  Especially second time parents.

Which is how I ended up spending the time that I should've been resting, recuperating and enjoying the paid-for-by-my-insurance childcare instead Googling "Jewish girl names".  Finally, after an entire day wasted debating the merits of Sadie versus Sara, my exhaustion got the best of me.  At that point I really didn't care what we named the kid as long as I could go home the following day, sleep in my own bed, and take advantage of the free childcare being provided by my Mother-in-Law.

As I recall, the final decision was made like this:

Me: JUST PICK A FUCKING NAME ALREADY! (crying) I'm too tired to care!  

Chris: Rose is nice.

Me: Great, fine, whatever.  At least it's easy to spell. Now give me the damn paperwork so I can go to sleep.

I'm not completely sure if she really looks like a Rose.  But it is easy to spell, and I'm still too tired to come up with something more creative. 
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Thursday, September 25, 2014

Do-Gooder


Today is the first day of the Jewish New Year.  I can't remember what year it actually is - either 5775 or 5776 or possibly nothing close to that - but nevertheless today is the beginning of a sparkly fresh annum.

In the vein of New Years Resolutions and all that, I've decided that I'm going to make an effort to do some good deeds in 577...whatever.  Being a self-involved narcissist is great for the sake of humor, but I could really use some karma points in case heaven is an actual place and not just how I refer to the "emerging designers" section at Bloomingdales.

Since misery loves company I'm going to kick off my year of good deeds by giving you, dear readers, the opportunity to join me.

Imagine this: your middle school-aged daughter is crossing the street on her way between classes when, out of nowhere, she and her two friends are struck by a car.  Unsurprisingly, she sustains some pretty massive injuries and ends up with a traumatic brain injury.  The good news is that she has every chance of recovering fully with the help of daily therapy.  Here's the catch: the therapy that will, by all accounts, return your child to normal function costs $1100 per day and it's not covered by insurance.

Sadly, this isn't just some fodder for every parent's nightmare, but something that really happened to a girl living a few miles away. 

So, what do you do when the cost of therapy isn't covered by insurance and you're not a millionaire?  You thank your lucky stars for the incredible group of classmates who raise money to help pay for your recovery by selling t-shirts and smashing pies in their faces.  Just take a moment here and really let it sink in that a bunch of preteens care enough about a fellow student to come up with a way to make it possible for her to recover faster.  Uh, that's kind of putting us narcissistic adults to shame, isn't it?  I mean, the nicest thing I've done for someone else recently was making sure that no one stole her purse at the playground.

Let's band together and make this new year an altruistic one as apposed to a narcisstic one.

Buy a t-shirt.  It costs less than that Nars lipstick you've been eying, and the buzz from doing some good will last a lot longer than your lip color.
(Plus one of my adorable nephews designed the shirt and I want him to see his mad art skillz crusing down every street in LA)

Shana Tova, my friends.  May 577? be a sweet, healthy and bountiful year for us all!

xoxo