05 June 2010

The coinci dance

When we chose our daughter's middle name, which I choose not to reveal here for the sake of our family's privacy, I liked the idea of picking a name that had been in my family for several generations. The middle name we picked was the middle name of my cousin, my aunt, my father's mother, and her mother; my mother's grandmother even had a variant of the same name. It seemed like a lovely thing to give my daughter something that identified her as the fifth generation to share something in my family; for once, some continuity would originate in my side of the family, I felt.

Now I notice an odd little coincidence here: I know two people from outside this country with this name. A couple of years ago, I joined a writing group, and in this group is a woman from an Asian country. She has a lovely name that her parents gave her, but the name I learned first for her is the name she had picked as her "English name" because she thought it was pretty and would be easier for Americans to remember. This this name turns out to be the same name we picked for our daughter's middle name.

It strikes me as funny that I know two people, neither one born in this country, who have this name as their English names. Maybe there are many, many more than I realize, and this is a popular name among immigrants from other countries as well, but I prefer to feel lucky to have noticed this bit of happenstance.

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