Sunday, January 20, 2008

The Name

Isn't it odd, for those of you in my intimate, sad, club, how much punch the name holds?
You know, the name. That one you chose for that beautiful, unique, perfect child of yours. That child who ended up getting not much but a name. Is that what it is? Is it just that their name is almost all we have of who they would have been? We don't know if they would have preferred soccer or ballet, but we do know that we would have cheered, "Yeah, Charlotte!" We don't know what the art would have looked like, if her handwriting would have been messy or tidy, but it would have been there, scrawled in the bottom left corner, "Charlotte R." Is that why it's so hard to meet somebody with that name? Why my skin crawls with envy, with the longing to leap up and shout, "My daughter is Charlotte, too. " Why is that?

This musing comes out of Kate, who sometimes reads this blog, whose little lost baby is named Liam. Somehow this broke my heart more than usual, to think that she grieved her baby Liam, while I thrived on mine. That while my heart pumped through my veins because of my Liam, hers was broken because of hers. It humbled me, made me suddenly extra-grateful for my darling boy, to think that he walked around bearing the name that was music to Kate's ears, that made her want to leap up and claim immediate ownership, that made her weep and sing for joy all at the same time. My resolute protector, and hers as well, keeping her in such a lovely place, as all of our lost babies do. Thinking of Liam today, of yours, Kate, and mine.
Caption for picture: This is a little piece from a grand and beautiful piece of art that cousin Sabrina Ward Harrison made for little Liam. A quote from Charlotte's Web, which of course became Charlotte's book, is collaged into the beauty of it.

1 comment:

sweetsalty kate said...

I do feel this way, a bit of a twinge - but mostly it's just bittersweet, some goodness in knowing that another child shares his name and walks the earth, and is so treasured.

Knowing that, I can't help but be glad that his name rings in ordinary life for someone, somewhere. :)