My name is Felina, which means “cat like”. Thinking of who I am, the meaning doesn’t really match my personality, or maybe it does. But the name felt like a natural fit when it came to mind. Felina replaced the name that I was born with, which was Robin. Robin means “famous”. Who wouldn’t want to be thought of as famous? I definitely do, but I just didn’t like having a name that is shared with boys and/or men. I needed my own identity.
For many, their name is important to them, it makes them who they are. How many times have you heard someone say, “Oh you look like a Susan”? Or That something a John would say.
If I take all the people I know and group the by name and think about their personalities, the funny thing is, most often they share most of the same behaviors, likes and dislikes.
When parents are feverishly trying to come up with baby names before and after their babies are born, they’re normally trying to please family members and see what sounds good with their last name. It’s not an easy task, because in a sense you are branding the child when you give them their name. Unless they decide to change it down the line like I did, they will carry it with them to their grave. That’s big, and certainly warrants the time and consideration that goes into it.
When people get married, they have to think long and hard as to whether or not they will carry their partners last name or stay with their own. Often times, people feel they lose their identity when they take their partners last name in marriage. This is something that should be discussed as a couple so that no one gets surprised and it ends up hurting the relationship that both parties worked so hard to build.
Today, I’m thinking of Prince William and his wife the Duchess of Cambridge (Catherine) as they work hard to find the appropriate name for their royal son. I wish them much love and god speed and they address this major challenge. I know whatever they decide, we will all be proudly awaiting their decision.
What’s in a name?©
By Felina Silver Robinson