She Had to be Called Madeline…


Skip now to my own pregnancy with my daughter. I knew I was having a girl, after 6 dreams told me so. I knew also that she would be strong, so strong, because I dreamed about her soul in a life as a tribesman in Africa. She was the last remaining survivor in her tribe, and as the warring tribe came for her up over the hill, she decided to die by her own spear rather than give them the satisfaction of taking her life.

So, her father and I could not agree upon a name for such a strong soul. He was convinced that she had to be called Madeline, but it being one of the top 50 names of 2003, I would not agree to it. Her name had to be unique. And so, at an impass, I told her father and anyone who asked that it would come to us in a dream.

Indeed, her father received this dream. In it, she was being passed around in the airport and her father told everyone that her name was Mayla, only he received 2 spellings of this name: one was the spelling we chose (“Mayla”), and the other was “Maela.” I liked it immediately and, looking it up in the baby name book, I discovered that though “Mayla” was not listed, under the second spelling, it said “See Madeline.” This unique name was a nickname for the very one that her dad had wanted for her! What an amazingly creative compromise to both of our desires. Her rightful name had indeed come to us as an inspired dictate.


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