Wednesday, June 3, 2015

GrowingUP: A Rose is a Rose

What's in a name?

A question I have often pondered actually. I have a bit of a fascination with names. Where they come from. Why they rise and fall in popularity. How people choose names for their children. Why they choose names for their children when they know full well they will call them something else. I am not talking about nicknames. I mean naming a kid John Jacob knowing full well you will call him Jacob. Stuff like that.

I grew up with a nickname that has stuck with me for 45 years now. I don't mind. I have grown accustomed to it. It is Leli. As in jelly.  My given name is Leslie. I could not pronunce the 'S' when I was little and Leli stuck. Yes, I know it looks like Lee-Lie. I felt like using the spelling Lelly was not true to my name unless it had been spelled Leslly. I also felt like Lelie just looked like I forgot the 'S'. Also, I recently saw a store clerk whose name was Anjelyka. Go ahead, sound it out. I'll wait. Leli is looking pretty good huh?

Leslie was a long time family name, mostly male ancestors of course, but it is also my mother's middle name, so it was carefully chosen for me. My middle name? Not so much. My folks passed a liquor store on the way to the hospital. Cameron Liquor apparently. I am glad they went with just Cameron.

I searched a baby name book once when I was a kid to find the meaning of my given monikers. Leslie means "Dweller of the grey fortress." Adorable, right? Cameron references "a man with a crooked nose." Equally as lovely. I shall not mention Little Sister's given names but they mean "Epitome of femininity" and "Womanly." Have I mentioned I am saving for therapy?

A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.

This implies that the name of something does not really affect who or what they are. I don't know. Can our names affect our personalities? Maybe. What do you think? I really want to know. For real.

Quote of the Day: “I read in a book once that a rose by any other name would smell as sweet, but I've never been able to believe it. I don't believe a rose WOULD be as nice if it was called a thistle or a skunk cabbage.” --Anne Shirley 


  1. I laughed so hard my hernia popped out. I'll be in pain for the next three days.
    My name is Cheryl Charlene. Both of which are feminine forms of Charles. Had I been a boy would they have named me Charles Charles?

  2. You might want to have that looked at.

  3. For your story collection-I was named Michelle, and my nickname was Meesh, or Baby Meesh sometimes. But then my parents got divorced and when I was four or so I went to live with my dad and his girlfriend -who became the most wonderful mom to me-and somewhere along the line nicknamed me Shelley. I always think that renaming me was her way of claiming me as her daughter. Cool, huh?

  4. My name, which means "bitter" (I'm not fond of that!) works in almost any language -- I know other Marias who are German, Syrian, Spanish, Dutch, etc. I've always liked that it's an international name because when I meet people from other countries, they are happy to meet a Canadian with a name that they already know. But my dad often called me Mariah when I was growing up, as in "they called the wind Mariah" and I love that, too. Leli is lovely! And so is Leslie!