When I first found out I was going to be a grandmother, I was over the moon excited. Once it settled in, I got to thinking about what this little grand would eventually call me. What would my grandmother name be?
Of course, experienced grandmothers told me to leave it up to the child. What? Leave it up to a goo-goo-ing, diaper-clad little pooper? I don’t think so.
I totally get that my name of choice might morph depending on pronunciation issues of the little tyke. But naming myself left me in control, which is, of course, what matters most to this controlling-baby-boomer Gram.
So I picked Gram for no other reason than I liked the sound of it. It wasn’t grandma, it wasn’t granny. It was just a cool, short, 4-letter, easy to pronounce Gram. And it sounded younger than I was (which now that I re-consider was totally erroneous thinking!).
Ultimately, the Grand Decides the Name
My 1st grand said my name a bit garbled for the first 2 years of her life. It was the same garble, but it was unrecognizable to anyone but herself. Oh, she knew who the garble referred to, recognized my face when she saw me in person or on the FaceTime screen. But pronouncing it was just beyond her. She even pronounced her paternal granddad’s name – BigDaddy (yes, he is a character to match that name!), before she ever got close to pronouncing Gram.
The next grands were 2 of the sweetest little brothers from another country. I was worried, as English was their still-being-learned second language. But Gram came easy to them. And their accent when they said it was just mesmerizing. They’ve lost the accent a bit, but they still seem to sing a melody when they say it (or maybe it’s just my hearing that makes it sound that way (;0)
The 1-year old is yet to try my name, so we shall see! Perhaps my name will be the first spoken clearly and plainly. Or perhaps not (;o(
What I Learned about Choosing a Name, Now That I’ve Done It
- Make it your choice. It’s your name. I know this might fly in the face of what the parent-figure wants, but stick to your guns. You gotta live with it the rest of your life.
- Don’t worry if the name has already been ‘taken.’ For each of your grands, you will be the unique and only one for them. I know there is no other Gram in my grands’ lives!
- If there is a tradition in your family, by all means, carry it through. There was little or none in mine, although the inlaws for both my son and daughter adopted GiGi as the name. I do believe there was history in the families for that choice (although I cannot recall!). It certainly fits both of those women very well (if a name can actually fit anyone!). And the first grand said it really quickly! (No, I wasn’t jealous at all. Really. Well, kinda!)
- It doesn’t have to sound good when spoken with the grandfather’s name. Although ours – Gram+Pop – are certainly short enough for them to remember and they sorta roll off the tongue as one word, don’t they? Or maybe not. But it certainly is not necessary to have them ‘flow’.
- An interesting side note: for some reason my granddaughters both decided as little ones to whisper my husband’s name whenever they enter the house. Is ‘Pop’ here? said in low, sweet tones, almost reverently. Not sure why they do it, or if my husband bribed them with candy behind my back (and their parents’) to treat him like a god, but it is truly one of the sweetest sounds to my husband’s ears. This has nothing to do with you picking the right name for yourself, but just wanted to share that grands will do whatever they want with the name once they get a hold of it.
Here’s an interesting book about the topic, which might shed some inspiration on your search for the perfect name for you.
Let me know in the comments what name you decided on!! Love to hear it!
Good luck, and may be the spirit of name-picking be with you!!