Rock, paper, scissors

By 11:24

Naming my son was by far the biggest responsibility I have ever had. And I have had pretty big responsibilities in my life. Still, the burden of naming my baby far outweighed anything else I've been through. He will be defined by this name for the rest of his life. Also, what if I name him something and change my mind later? This responsibility comes with such finality.

What made it even more difficult was the hard and fast rules Hindus abide by without ever questioning their current day relevance. At birth, you're supposed to map out the alignment of the planetary bodies at the specific time and geographic location of birth. Through a few formulas, you're given a syllable or letter of the Hindi alphabet which you use as a starting letter to name your child. Until then, the foetus and newborn is nameless for fear of what bad luck may bring.

But ever since I can remember, I always had an alphabet preference. I love so many boys names beginning with the letter A and knew my son would one day be named Aashiq. Then everything got messed up when I decided to have a child...with someone...someone who also wanted a say in naming his child. Unexpectedly, my dreams also jumped onto the A name bandwagon and decided on Aarav.

The priest had come back to us with disastrous letters. They were so bad that I enlisted the help of the Twitterverse with #HelpNameSqueak. I went through lists of names horrified at the prospect of naming my child one of them. Still, none of the names appealed to me. Here's what we came up with for the letters D and H:
- Dayaram Daya (the same name for a surname. Anyone remember Scot Scott?)
- Doogie Howser (when you need inspiration from pop culture. Mind you there are many a Ronaldo Govender in Chatsworth who's parents were inspired by Manchester United.)
- Harshit (why wait for schoolkids to make fun of your child's name when you can do it yourself)
- Aashiq Deepshith Hardik Daya (how about keeping the names I like and settling on H and D as middle names? ADHD. How's that monogrammed on a towel?)
- Hariprasad (This just sounds like an old man - not appropriate as a newborn name at all.)
- Hriday (I'm not even sure I can pronounce this name propely).
- Hanuman (I love names with beautiful meanings but I draw the line with religious God names. I mean if Squeak decides to become a drug dealer or stripper, I don't want his name to hold him back.)
- Himanshu (would I be able to yell this name out when he's in trouble?)

Six days after his birth, we gave up on H and D, not knowing how to tell the religious parents that we were going to scrap tradition and go with a name we liked. I was thrilled at naming his Aashiq but now The Husband preferred Aarav. How did we resolve another naming conflict? Rock, paper, scissors, of course.

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