Our new arrival is due this week, and of course I'm second-guessing the name decisions we made months ago. I'm trying not to mention this to my husband yet, because I don't want to raise unnecessary doubts in his mind, so I'm hoping you guys can talk me through it.
My husband fell in love with the name Pippa--and I love it too--but I insisted that we need something more "formal" on the birth certificate to give her more options. We decided that Penelope is the best option. Neither of us *love* it, but we don't dislike it, and if she wanted to be Penelope, Nell, Penny, etc down the line, I think we'd be fine with it. However, we don't have any intention of using it day-to-day.
Now I'm having doubts about whether using Penelope is wise. I read the comments here on another thread about people who feel disconnected with their legal first name because it was never used, and I wonder if that would be an issue. I was in another discussion with people who go by their middle names, and they had the same issue, as well as not being able to get their "preferred" name on marriage certificates, passports, drivers' licencses, etc. I can't decide if those hassles are worth the benefit of having a "formal" name. In practice, it shouldn't be any different than Elizabeth-called-Betty or Josephine-called-Posy, right?
I think I'd feel a lot better about using just-Pippa on the birth certificate if we had chosen a middle name that I loved, that she could use if she wanted. Since our older daughter has an family name, we wanted to do the same, so we combined her grandmas' middle names (Marie + Ann) to make Marianne. It's not exactly our taste, but we thought it would be a nice gesture. Turns out one of the grandmas despises the name (for style reasons) and has spent months trying to get us to choose something else. Of course, the other grandma loves it, so I don't feel like we can just decide not to honor her after all. If I were able to go back in time, I'd pick June as her middle-- it's my birth month, and I think it makes a beautiful back-up name if she doesn't like Pippa.
Ok, so give me your thoughts. Am I just overthinking this? Should we ditch Penelope? I feel like just-Pippa is a more daring choice than I'm completely comfortable with, and I like the safety of a top-50 name to fall back on, but I don't want it to be a lifelong hassle for her.
Tue, 05/17/2016 - 3:11pm