Tuesday, June 17, 2014


What else did you think I was going to write about? Who's Vaibhavi? Well that’s my kid. She is called lots of other things like Vibha(which I thought would be pronounced Veebha but has ended up being pronounced like Viva in her nursery :(  ) , Chumki, Chiyaa, Tubi and many more. Naming her Vaibhavi was not easy to start with.
When I was expecting, we used to have name-brain-storming sessions. K, mil and I would fling names at each other. No name calling though :P If it was going to be a boy, the name was decided. K and I had  unanimous vote on it. Mil, my parents too gave their go ahead. But what if it was a girl? Our mythology and history abounds in strong male characters. Hence getting our hands on a boy's name was a cake walk. But for a girl, it was such a challenge. We also had this wish of K to accommodate. K's name begins and ends with the same character (K), my name also begins and ends with the same character (A). My mil and sil's names also begin and end with an A. Hmm.. who would have thought that. So K kinda wanted the girl's name to begin and end with an A. We kept looking and looking and looking. We browsed friends' names in Fb and our phone book. Some we considered, but then eliminated for some reason or other – for instance, some names did go with the surname the kid was going to have (The surname being the first name of K as is tradition in Tamil households) Some names did not have a neutral feel, we did not want the name to be type cast into either being from Tam-land or Oddu-land. We wanted a degree of neutrality there. Once we had given up these sources, we started swimming through names, whatever we could think of. Most of the names that came up as a part of this exercise, were rejected because we knew someone mean who was bearer of the same name! The horror of horrors. That led to the death of the initial requirement of the name being from A to A.
We gave up A. We tried any name with the regular expression {characterx}{Some characters}{characterx}. Many characters were eliminated, actually most characters were eliminated. We were left with E and I. Huh. Brick wall. What next? Ditch the whole starting and ending with same character funda. Lets break the rules, take off the shackles and go free flow. Hurray. Easy peasy. In fact easier said than done. It was nearly the same scenario with a gazillion restrictions. Mil started saying the 1000 names of Goddess Durga (I guess) and suggesting the name. We kept rejecting. K went old school (very old school ) and started digging names of great grandmas. Hmm.. well I did not want my girl named something which rather be a password. Though I was fighting K's retro theme, I suggested the name Vishalakshi. It is the name of one of my friends's mom and I kinda like that name. K and mil loveddddddd it. Weird. I somehow get a bit fazed by out right approval. I like a bit of a fight instead. The name was good. Mil loved it because it was some Goddess's name. Went with the 70s feel, but there was one little problem. You know how these 2000 kids are? Even OK is K for them and words like TTYL and IMHO are used with abandon (I have to look up wiktionary to find the meaning of these abbreviations). So Vishalakshi was certainly going to be Visha. Now Visha is not a very nice sounding word – in Hindi the word means poison. It also had the risk of becoming Visa(not that Viva is any better now, but who knew what the world might throw). So I raised an alarm. Mil and K agreed, apparently the Tamil word for poison sounded similar. Hah -  a country united by poison :P Thus was the retirement of the very nice sounding name. But the fascination of the letter V caught on. If you have a name with V you can have a jazzy signature-now the kid could thank her parents for something in the future (if she was creative enough). I like letters with strokes – Z, V, K (remember Mask of Zorro? The Z he makes with the sword? ) They give much better signature scope than say and I, J or O. So I started racking my brain. And I stumbled upon the name Vaibhavi.
K loved it. Mil liked it. Mom and dad liked it too. My granny thanks to watching all those dance shows on tv was reminded of Vaibhavi Merchant! If you chose to go that route, I quite like Vaibhavi Merchant :P Now with all these people liking it, I started getting my reservations again. But a tired and battle weary K had no stamina to carry on. He put his foot down and stated – If it’s a girl her name is going to be Vaibhavi. The man of the house had spoken, and thus was named the kid of the house.
Sorry kiddo, nothing as interesting as Gogol for you :D :P


Ashma said...

Hehehe... Good read.. ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

btw you know someone with A to A who is not mean ๐Ÿ˜‹

Renu said...

naming your child is tough, I still feel I should have named my children differently:)

Soma Pradhan said...

Done a Superb Job Amrita-- A to Z..Congratulations to have completed it..

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