My New Born Daughter,

There are too few surprises in this short life. The kind of surprise that stirs the soul to great joy. Announcing you, our 6th daughter and 12th child to your mom yesterday was one of these moments. In our family, names are revealed through; the sound of a developing voice, a gaze upon the new face, an observation of temperament, and prayer.

Before you Mom’s intuition in the gender of her unborn babies had never been wrong. Sure enough that we had only settled on boy names for you. We narrowed the options down to Jubal, Octavius, and Remember. In their place have come laughter combined with a great deal of discernment during our first day with you.

And so we name you Aria-Fern.

A Biblical or Saint name must come first for you. Your name Aria is derived from Saint Ariadne of Phrygia an early martyr in the Church. The meaning varies from “lion of God” to “holy” or “pure”. With eyes turned to God, Saint Ariadne’s story is one of courage and faithfulness in the face of earthly power and danger. A beautiful name for our new daughter.

fernFern is the name of your Great-Grandfather’s only sister. Many years ago I listened to the story of her life pour over the dining room table as he spoke of her with a softer voice, his speech reflective. He loved that name and with him I fell in love with it too. Theirs was a hard life of loss and struggle – the kind of life that changes the way a person thinks of others and upon the world.  Her story recorded in audio I shall write here for you some day.

These stories along with the many who came before await your ears. Grow strong little one. You will need the courage of lions to survive in our house!




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