Fun Friday Question: Who were you almost?

Happy Friday everyone! Is this — could this be — possibly — my *fifth* post of this week?? Did I put up a post every day since Monday?? I can’t even believe it myself!

I have more birth announcements coming for you (so! many! babies! 😍😍😍), but I thought I’d take a quick breather and ask a fun question. A while ago Abby from Appellation Mountain asked about your “pre-name” on Facebook — actually, I can’t remember what she called it, it was something like “pre-name” I think, but probably not because I searched several times for that term and similar ones to find the post and link to it and I can’t, so I must have it wrong — anyway, she meant the name you almost had, or the name(s) that your parents considered for you before deciding on the name they gave you. I’ve been meaning to pose the question here ever since!

I’ll start: My parents considered Tiffany for me! (Which I’ve come to sort of love since I discovered it’s medieval form of Theophania [=Epiphany] and was traditionally given to girls born on the Epiphany. How cool!) (I was not born on or near the Epiphany, though.) They settled on Katherine Marie before changing it to Katherine Morna immediately after I was born (my sweet dad acquiesced to my exhausted mom ❤ ). (Happy day! I don’t feel a bit like a Tiffany, but very very much like a Katherine Morna, and especially a Kate.) How about you? Who were you almost?


My book, Catholic Baby Names for Girls and Boys: Over 250 Ways to Honor Our Lady (Marian Press, 2018), is available to order from ShopMercy.org and Amazon — perfect for the expectant parents, name enthusiasts, and lovers of Our Lady in your life!

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63 thoughts on “Fun Friday Question: Who were you almost?

  1. I was almost Belinda, but they named me Melina instead. I’ve never felt like a Melina really, but am SO GLAD they didn’t go ahead with Belinda!
    My first daughter was almost Maura, which I loved, but my husband said the u made it sound depressing so we altered it to Mara. She is the sunniest-natured thing and I’m glad he convinced me to change her name just that little bit.

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  2. My Dad really wanted to call me Anna, it is my Mum’s name and maybe that’s why they didn’t go with it. I love Anna but here in Poland almost every possible name, even as short as Anna, has to have a nickname, and most Annas are called Anias, which I dislike, or rather, I don’t feel like an Ania at all. Anna is my middle name though, as it is a tradition in our region that children get their middle names after parents FN’s, and I like my middle name a lot. Other names that they considered were Helena (love it! and would really like to be a Helena), Maria (not me at all), and my gran suggested Emilia which my Mum liked a lot. In the end I got my name after both my aunt and Mum’s best friend. While I’m neutral about this name in general, I’ve never liked it on myself at all and never felt like it fits me. And a couple years ago I legally changed my name to Emilia (didn’t even know back then that this was what my gran suggested 😀 ). And I feel awesome as Emilia Anna and I feel that it flows much better with my confirmation name (Luiza, after servant of God Luisa Piccarreta) than my birth name did.

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  3. My parents wanted to name me Aniela and call me Annie, but then they were semi-guilted into naming me Ann instead. Not incredibly different, but they made up a phony story about why they changed their minds that they told me until I was in my 20s. If I were a boy I’d have been Christopher!

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    • Oh no! I’m always so sorry to hear about parents who end up feeling “not allowed” to choose the name they want. Aniela is pretty, but I love Ann too, and Annie is one of my favorite nicknames!

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      • This was more of a guilting *into* using Ann, not so much out of using Aniela (which is actually a family name and I’d totally consider using)! Later my mom received pressure about my little sister’s name before she was born, from the same family member (the name was “too irish”) but then my parents used it anyway 😉 I guess you can only let your parents strong-arm you so many times!!

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  4. Ariel! Thank the good Lord they changed their minds as The Little Mermaid was released right about when I was 5. Disaster averted.
    My mom and my aunt were in a race: they were both hoping to use Eric for a boy. Luckily for family peace, I was a girl.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wow!! Your mom considered Ariel and Eric BEFORE The Little Mermaid came out?? That’s amazing! Ooh yeah, I’ve heard of other situations where siblings hope to use the same name — so glad it all worked out for your fam!

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  5. My parents say they couldn’t decide on Lisa Marie or Melanie Ann in the hospital and brought me home without a name(!). One night they were sitting on the couch holding me and asked, “Melanie Ann or Lisa Marie?” and they say I giggled when they said Lisa Marie, so that’s what they chose.

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  6. I think my parents had picked out Alice Elizabeth – but we were twins – suprise! However, we became Mary Elizabeth and Mary Alice. (I know Alice is popular now, but when we were born, it was viewed old fashioned and boring, Sticking Mary in front of it helped.)

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  7. I was almost Alice – which is probably what baby-in-utero will be if it turns out to be a girl!
    According to my mum, they vetoed Alice because it was the name of a nurse who kept flirting with my dad! 😱

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ohmygosh! That’s hilarious! I like that you’re considering naming your daughter the name you were almost given — I have a friend who did that and I always thought that was neat — like naming the baby for Mom without using her name.

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  8. If a boy, pretty sure they were going to go with Matthew (which I like, but I don’t like Matt – which it is always shorten to). That is what my dad’s journal from the time said.
    For girl they were torn. So much so that they resorted to flipping a coin in the delivery room!! Dad wanted Rebecca (because any Becky he ever knew was always happy) and Mom wanted Amy (her oldest sister is Rebecca). Mom won, and I am glad. Funny thing is, my dad’s brother had a baby girl 2 months after me and they named her Rebecca. She doesn’t like her name and goes by Becky. Only she turned out to be about the opposite of what my dad envisioned for a Becky. I guess they considered Amy but my dad got to it first. 🙂

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  9. My name was pretty set, but had I been a boy my name would have been John Patrick. My son is now James Patrick – when I first told my mom his name she said, “You named this baby after yourself!” I was amused that she caught on.

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    • That’s so cool! My sil gave her son the name she would have been given if she’d been a boy, I always thought that was a great idea. So nice for your mom, too, to know that you think she had good taste!

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  10. My parents really thought I would be a boy and would have named
    me Robert Samuel. When I was a girl they went back and forth between Ann Miriam and Miriam Ann. I ended up with Ann as the first name, but my dad calls me Ann, Ann Miriam and Miriam pretty much interchangeably.

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    • Aw I really like this! I love both Ann and Miriam and I love that your dad makes full use of both! I often call my boys by both names, I always get a little thrill out of hearing their middles.

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  11. I was almost Tanneal. My mother loved the duo, Captain and Tanneal. My older brother is Terrence, my mom thought Terrence and Tanneal sounded great. My grandmother lobbied to change it to Mary Elizabeth Ann after herself and my paternal grandmother. My mom went along, but never loved it. In the family photo albums, it’s Marybeth’s First Bday, Betsy’s second bday and for my 3rd bday, my mon thought of Mea (the initials for Mary Elizabeth Ann.) I have been Mea ever since. People always think it’s Mia and I have to say I’m the Irish Mea. 🙂

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    • I think Terrence and Tanneal sound great too! Your story isn’t the first time I’ve heard of grandparents basically naming the baby, I’m always surprised by that! The evolution of your nicknames is pretty great, and I love Mea!

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    • Would they have spelled the name Tanneal? In the singing duo the name was spelled Tennille. It was her last name – first name Toni. I love this story. It is so 1970’s and I was a big C&T fan as well – Love will keep us together…whatever…

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  12. Joining in a day late. Enjoyed reading the “could have been” stories. My name was pretty set and never wavered. Both my parents wanted to name a first-born girl Mary, so I am Mary Teresa – after the BVM & a grandmother and middle for St. Teresa of Avila. And I have 3 older cousins all named Mary too, so they didn’t care that it was already used by siblings. If I had been a boy I would have been Robert Joseph (or Joseph Robert if actually born on his feast day which was my due date). They did use that name two years later when my brother was born. They tended to “keep and use” the names they picked. I have two additional siblings who are younger and when they were born they had a boy and girl name picked out (and I got to “help” with input). First my sister was born and given the girl choice, then two years later my brother got the boy name they had saved.

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  13. Ha! I called it an almost-name … so it must have stuck in your head somewhere, because you used the same word I settled on. 🙂

    I have a friend who was almost Tiffany, too! She ended up with a much more traditional name, just like you … and it suits her beautifully. Though I have a dear friend named Tiffany, so I have come to love that name, too.

    My sister’s almost-name is the one I remember most specifically: Kerry, vetoed because my dad had a book called “Kerry: The Fire-Engine Dog” when he was a kid.

    One of my almost names was … Abby. Which ultimately became the name I chose for myself when I chose a new name as an adult. My almost MIDDLE name was Elizabeth, which I’m always a little sad about, because it’s such a gorgeous name with so many worthy namesakes AND all those glorious nicknames … (But then, if I’d had such a satisfactory middle name, maybe my fascination with all things onomastic never would have come to pass and that would be sad, too!)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Haha! Oh this is great! I loved that post, that was fun to read. Your dad’s reason for vetoing Kerry is hilarious! I never knew that Abby was an almost-name for you — makes it seem like even a more perfect pick for you! I totally agree, too, about our names shaping us — Duana wrote about that in her book, and Morna’s certainly done that for me!

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  14. If I was a boy I was going to be Jack but I was always going to be Maddison regardless of anything (my mum and grandma chose it before my dad was even in the picture. She sadly passed two years before I was born). A sister was meant to be Lily/Lilley (the latter spelling was my mums maiden name so I feel like they would have gone with that spelling) but they never had another kid. My dad never really got a say on any of the above. 16 years later we randomly asked my dad what he would have named me if mum hadn’t been able to have a say and he said Redding. Not mad at it but definitely out of left field!

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  15. I think I have the weirdest almost-name. My given name (Arielle) is already a little weird – a Hebrew boy’s name given a French feminine ending. My dad wanted to name my after Ariel Durant, and my mom insisted on the feminine ending. But my mom wanted to name me FAIRLIGHT. After the character in the Christy novel. She was serious enough that now she thinks I should give it to a kid as at least a middle name. Um, no.

    Other names they considered were Brynn and Bronwyn and I actually love those. I would have used one of them if I could fit them into my religious naming conventions.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Scot with one t, which became my brother’s name. His almost name was Heather.

    The almost names for my girls were Gregory (still love that one) and Thomas. And Antonio, although that would never have flown with the husband. But I still love it.

    Liked by 1 person

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