Hey Four (we won’t be calling you Four for too much longer)!
Yesterday your dad and I agreed on your names. It is pretty cool that we arrived at this after so many options. Back in the fall we made a big pile of index cards. Each one had a name written in big marker in the middle. Then in the top right corner we had the origin and ethnicity of the name. Below the name we had the meaning. The pile was at 87 names when we started. At one point we put all of the names in alphabetical order on the dining room table. Your dad and I went through them and started to get rid of ones that we knew wouldn’t be long term contenders. So as time wore on we narrowed the field and finally, in the past couple of weeks, we were down to 6 final names. My original plan was to go to the hospital with those six and then look at you to figure out which one we would go with. However, yesterday, when we both were thinking about the many meanings and connections with this series, it was a done deal. We think we have this locked up perfectly and now, when you kick me, I say your name. We are going to keep it a secret until you are born since we want some element of this journey to be a surprise to the family. So your name is that special unknown for everyone.
Let me start with your last name. Your dad has a very cool analysis of that. It is Scottish, but many people assume it is Jewish. You are mostly German, as my side of the family is very German. Your dad’s side has some German too. Then you are Scottish, Irish, and Polish. Your last name can be traced pretty far and there is apparently a Scottish tartan to go with your Grandpa E’s ancestry – the Murray clan. I have traced back GGF’s side very far. I think I am to the 1500’s in Germany. I look forward to you learning all about your heritage. Hopefully you will be interested in tracing your lineage even more. Your dad and I will attempt to do more too.
Okay, you will have two middle names. Since we are pretty sure you will be an only child, we decided to honor your dad’s grandfathers with your middle names. In fairness, we should have used three middle names – which I will explain shortly. Your first middle name is in honor of Grandma G’s father who was a WWII hero…and sadly who she never met. If you refer back to my letter to you about Grandma G, she was just a baby when her father was shot down in northwest Germany. He was a pilot and fought so bravely. Your Grandma G and dad have researched a lot about him and that is going to be something very meaningful for you to see at some point. Maybe we will even be able to take you to his gravesite of his crew in Europe too someday, however we will certainly take you to see where he is buried in the southwest burbs. So, even though your dad never knew him, your GGL has had a huge impact on his life. We did not give you the additional middle name of the man that your dad knew as grandpa instead. Your GGA remarried. Grandma G’s stepfather was an Italian man and Grandma G ended up with a half brother. Her stepdad was one of your dad’s grandpas and a really great guy. You will learn all about him as Grandma G’s brother had two daughters and one of them is very close with us, so you will be connected to that part of the family. Back to your first middle name though. We love that it means “brave lion”. It is an old Germanic name and has strong meanings throughout. It is also connected to the overall abbreviations of your names…which I will get to – eventually. It is also referenced with the Zodiac sign for the month when your dad and I were married, Grandma J’s birthday, the date we implanted you, and the month we found out that we were pregnant with you. That sign is a cat, which is also connected to your pets that are waiting for you to get here too.
Your other middle name is Grandpa E’s dad’s middle name. This name was considered for your first name too. This will be your second middle name. It is important to maintain this order as you will see. It is a German and Polish name, so that suits your heritage. It is also connected to a very famous and successful Roman emperor, which ties you to my maiden name, which was German but from Roman origins. The Romans used to bestow this as an honor meaning “great”, “moral”, “wise”. Your dad and I hope that you are brave, but also wise. The name is also tied to the month when your dad and I were married. Additionally, last year it was 8/8/16 when we got the news that we were pregnant with you. Double 8’s are super lucky in some cultures, and we were certainly super blessed to get the news about you on that date (even having 8/8 in the year of 16…so lucky).
And, now, finally your first name! We had kept this name in the running all along, but more on a whim. There were a couple of other long-standing, traditionally masculine, timeless names that were higher on your dad’s list of finalists, but when we started to put everything together this name was where it was at. This is a very old Latin name going way back in time. It is an apostle’s name and he was credited with writing the greatest part of the gospels. He may have also been a physician and is the patron saint of physicians and surgeons…which, when you consider that your dad and I relied on medical help so much to get you here, that is a nice connection to the medical support team that got us to this soon-to-be realized dream. The variation of this name we are using for you also connects you to artists and creatives. I would like to believe that I am those things as I have always been described as such. Moreover, the version we are giving you is linked to the name of one of your dad’s and my favorite story tellers ever. Given when he and I were born, this creative artist sparked the imaginations of kids our age all over the world in 1977 when the first movie of his extensive series came out. Strange how that was “Episode FOUR”, which still has adult fans explaining to kids that is goes: 4, 5, 6, 1, 2, 3, 7, 3.5 – that 3.5 is Rogue One, which explains the story between the end of 3 and start of 4. But it all started with “Four” – cool, right? Your first name is all over the creative world of the company that bears that name. We have all kinds of books that you can learn more about the art and technology that launched and continued to push the boundaries of film. I was a film major and your dad is an avid reader. We have long been people who are moved by stories. This ground-breaking director/producer/industry titan is one of the story tellers we both deeply admire. At one point I even got my hands on secret directions to his creative compound in northern California and came very close to driving right up to the gate with my resume in hand in the hopes of getting a job. I didn’t, but it was that close. Now his company is under the control of a well-respected and long-time successful female mogul who I had the great honor and pleasure to meet twice. She would have been my #2 dream job if driving up to the gate for dream job #1 didn’t pan out. Anyway, this company is at the cutting edge of all things high-tech and has become the sacred archive of all things trademarked as a part of the “Universe” your namesake gave us starting way back in the 1970’s through now. Every time you watch one the films, play a video game, or play with a toy you will see your name there too. And, of course, in Episode 4, one of the main characters is also a version of your name. He is a character who eventually has to stand by being good when tempted by evil. He is a “light” in the story and even wields a special weapon of light. He learns to strengthen his gifts, and while maintaining his humble nature is heroic and self-sacrificing. See, you get named after another hero, albeit a fictional one in this case. Maybe all of this imagination will ignite your own creativity. I really hope that you enjoy stories too. The Latin meaning of your name is “bringer of light.” I think being well-read helps to make one enlightened. That is something that your dad and I admire in one another. We have very open minds because the stories and information we gleaned from so much reading took us into fantasy or science-fiction worlds, into historical times, to thought-provoking conundrums, to places far beyond our homes in Illinois. You will be bringing “light” to our lives too. Even though we are on the older range for first-time parents, you are a light in our world. Your story, as others have followed it, may also offer hope to women who like me are: older, overweight, anemic, hypothyroid, have had to go through fertility treatments, have suffered the frights of hemorrhages, have had to be on bedrest, have had to pray harder than any other time in their life, have held their breath from feeling one kick to the next, and have searched the internet for stories to offer hope when waves of anxiety washed over them. In this way, your birth is a sort of “illumination” (tied to your name) and I look forward to learning all about becoming a good mom. There is a “SoulUrge” number analysis connected to your name too. Guess what number that is? Four! I am not sure what a “SoulUrge” number is, but I will learn.
So, Four, you have four names. Each name has layers of special meaning unique to you. We may even discover more about your names and their importance as time unfolds. Here is that fun part that I mentioned earlier. When you abbreviate your names to the initials you get: LLAP. Even though this is connected to a different “Star” universe, your dad and I knew immediately that these would be your names when we looked up what the abbreviation for LLAP means. The search’s top hit revealed it is the acronym for “Live Long And Prosper.” Mic drop…boom….done! This is not only our wish for you, but also just a perfect tie-in to yet another powerful science-fiction mantra from the noble actor Leonard Nimoy, who played a character that shares a name with famous child-rearing author, Dr. Spock. Oh my, do the links continue! Grandma J read a lot of Dr. Spock books when raising me, so you could say I was a Spock baby. Your names are an acronym for a Spock quote. Fantastic!
So here we are, a little over 5 weeks away from your arrival and we are doing well with getting things in place. Knowing your name is what makes this super impactful now. I am sure we will still call your Four as that is part of your identity too. Hopefully you will be born in April when you are full-term and then your arrival will be in the 4th month of the year. That would be cool, eh? So it is time for me to get ready for work and try to get a little cleaning done before walking out the door.
I really hope that you end up liking your names. I wasn’t a fan of mine until I was older. Now I can’t imagine being anything but what I was named. You are kicking me right now, and I think you are stronger all the time! So, my baby boy….keep on growing and know that your dad and I are continuing to put your home together to be as good as it can be for when we bring you home! We love you our little “illuminating brave wise” one!