Published on March 31, 2020

Future mommy diaries

We had a girl name, but it’s a boy, and the search began

By Stephanie Johnson / The Bulletin

It’s a boy. Now we needed a name. Easier said than done.

He is going to have his name his entire life. This was a big decision, so we knew we needed to take our time.

Back in the day, they had baby name books that you would scroll through and read. The names were in alphabetical order, and you could look up the most or least popular names. Nowadays, we just get on Google and search “boy names 2020.” At least that is what we did.

Link after link, we found multiple lists and wrote down names that we liked. David liked more generic names, and I favored different, unique names that not a lot of kids would have. Google didn’t allow us to come to an agreement, so we started looking at different options.

Our dilemma was caused by the fact that we didn’t have any male family first names that we both liked. If the baby were a girl, the decision would have been easy. We would have named her Gizella, my middle name. It belonged to my grandmother, whom I have never met. She died before I was born. But I heard that she was a great woman who escaped from communism with her 10-year-old son, my dad.

Thus, our quest for a boy’s name that David and I both liked, began.

There are baby name phone apps that can be downloaded, which is what we did next. I downloaded one that randomized names and suggested different ones. I could then give the name a thumbs-up or thumbs-down, and the logarithm of the app changed before it suggested another name. We had better luck with this one, but still couldn’t come to an agreement.

We even asked Alexa for baby boy names. She suggested Alexa. That name must be like Chris or Pat, gender interchangeable. No offense, Alexa, but I cannot name the kid Alexa after Amazon appropriated that name. I couldn’t do that to him.

This name research was taking up a lot of our time. Bur then it happened. We found the perfect name while sitting on the couch watching Astros baseball.

The announcers were talking about Michael Brantley’s stats.

“Brantley”, I yelled. David looked at me with bright eyes, like he had just seen an angel. "Brantley”, he said. That’s it. That’s the name. We finally agreed.

“Now, who is Michael Brantley?” I asked.

We finally decided on a first name in a very unconventional way, and now it was time to come up with a middle name. We started going through our family names again.

“Who is someone who influenced your life?” We both had the same answer - our grandpas. His grandpa was his best friend, and my grandpa was my best friend. David is actually named after his grandpa. Since this is our first boy, I figured I would let him have this one.

His grandfather’s middle name was “Eugene.” No, any name but Euguene, I initially thought. Our baby sounds like he is already nearing retirement age.

My grandpa’s middle name was Milton, but he absolutely hated it. He wouldn’t tell people his middle name, and would just sign it as “M”. Milton was eliminated from consideration.

We were hanging out with his family, and we mentioned that we might use Eugene as a middle name, but we hadn’t fully decided. Everyone loved it, especially David’s grandma. That is how Brantley Eugene was finally named. We hope he likes his name as much as we do.

We felt a mutual sense of accomplishment. Maybe the next child will be a girl, and we’ll be all set on the name. No new research needed.

Now, it was time to get some diabetes testing done - all a routine part of the course, or supposed to be routine, anyway. More on that in my next column.

(You can reach Stephanie at stephanie.bulletin@gmail.com. Or by writing to: The Bulletin, P.O. Box 2426, Angleton, TX. 77516)