Saturday, December 10, 2011

Given Name

What single word identifies you?
The one word that identifies YOU is your “given” name.

Given to you at birth, due to the requirements at the hospital at conception or state registration licensing, hopefully by the people who spawned you, this one word will be carried to the grave.

Your “given” name has lots of different origins and definitions and your “given” name can designate your existence on this planet.

Now your last name is a family name declaring which clan you came from, but the “given” name, your first name, is chosen and handed to you without your approval.

So I looked up some of my friend’s names and was somewhat surprised.

(* Editors note: I never went through this process of identifying another human being, so this was a bit interesting to me.)

Many of the names were Hebrew from the Christian “Good Book”. Names like prophets and chapters reveling “The Lord is God” or “Beloved” or “God is Gracious” or "Who is like God”.

Some were ancient Britannia like “Artos” or Greek meaning “Water” or “Crown”.

I know where mine came from thought the researched meaning is now very exciting.

“Riverbank” is the earliest destination of the meaning, but in the geology of my ancestry it probably fits. It seems my clan wandered up through Europe selling salt.

The significances of my name come from the person I was named after. An uncle I never met who downed his plane in the Pacific during World War II.

At first I was not very happy with the name because it was rough like a “Bob” or “Butch” or “Hank” but over the years I recognize the honor of wearing his name.

But what’s up with hit middle name?

Not the name that everyone calls you. That’s the first name, your given name.

Not the last name that is the family name, usually from your father’s side. Everyone in the family carries that name. Even mom changed her last name to his name when she got married. That is part of the rules.

But like “middle school” is not elementary school or high school, but caught in the middle what’s up with a “middle” name?

And yet, those few years were probably more formidable than we would like to think.
So what the heck is a middle name?

On applications, all they want is an initial. Does that make the “middle” name less important?

Some are silly combinations with the first name like “Joe Bob” or “ Peggy Sue” which indicates the family couldn’t decide what to call you.

And some decide to keep all the names presented to them or even in extreme fascination to recreate their personal identity, legal change the word that is used for a call to attention in a crowd of others.

And that special word, used so many times to identify so many others, is your “given” name.

Embrace it for it is who you are.

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