Tuesday, March 18, 2008

What's in a name?

PAPs and APs frequently discuss their children's names and the topic often revolves around mixing a Western name with an orphanage name. Personally, I don't think I will do that. When I chose the name for my daughter, I wanted a name that represented her culture, but also her link to my family. Fortunately, her name is also a common (and easy to pronounce) Chinese name. I decided to NOT use an orphanage name because I wanted her to have a name that was given with thought and love in mind. I wanted her to have a name that her birth mother might have chosen. In addition, I have given her a "Western" name, but no one in my family or circle of friends uses that name when referring to her, they use her Chinese name.


Haven is no different. While I am not giving him a family name per se, I am giving him a name that represents something to my family. While it means "a place of safety" or "refuge", it has a much more personal meaning to me, just as my daughter's Western name does. But I did want to give him a Vietnamese name as well.

In both Chinese and Vietnamese cultures, you name your child after the attributes that you hope they will have. Little girls are often named after things that reflect their beauty, while boys are named for character traits. In Vietnamese culture, especially, the middle names represent these traits.

In January I found a document I had saved on my computer under my daughter's adoption file (yes, I am obsessive and I keep files everywhere--but Thank God or I wouldn't have had my 171H copied onto my thumb drive). Even before I had completed and submitted her dossier, I was already looking for a name for my son. I kept coming back to Haven Duc. Duc has several different meanings, but the ones I liked most were moral and good. I thought it was interesting that it represented desire as well. I have prayed for this son for so long, and yes, I have desired and longed for him. It just seems right. Right now, those that know about the adoption are referring to him as Haven, but I suspect that I will probably call him Duc (several pronunciations for the name depending on what part of the country you are in, but I prefer the Dook pronunciation). So, I'm putting it out there now...Haven Duc. It just seems right.

Right now north Texas (where I am) is flooding due to a storm that rolled in during the night. It has rained non-stop and Dallas-Fort Worth Airport has cancelled all flights. I pray that things improve by Friday so we can come home. Since the weather is crappy, Mom and I went to Babies R Us. Yes, I finally got to celebrate the way I wanted.

A little gift from Oma. Since it is so much cooler here than Vietnam, Oma thought Haven would need something to keep him warm. Thanks, Oma!

And from mama.


Yeah, he's going to be one fly dude.

3 comments:

mindfulmusings March 19, 2008 at 6:09 PM  

Duc sounds so cute when you say it! I still call Cooper, Cooper Lam all the time. He answered to it when we met him and it has just become part of his identity I think.

chrisandshasta March 20, 2008 at 9:43 AM  

It's a beautiful name, Erica! Love all the clothes too. -Shasta

Ryan and Heather March 20, 2008 at 8:36 PM  

So sweet!
We chose Elia's name, and are debating on what part of her Vietnamese name to keep as her middle name.

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About This Blog

This started as my story, but has evolved to OUR story. This is the story of life as a single parent to a wonderful little boy while we wait for baby sister. China LID 2.12.07.


But these things I plan won't happen right away. Slowly, steadily, surely, the time approaches when the vision will be fulfilled. If it seems slow, be patient! For it will surely take place. It will not be late by a single day.
Habakkuk 2:3

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