Wednesday, November 04, 2009

What's in a Name?

Joshua Todd Maxwell

Joshua - Scott and I took a little longer than we would have liked to settle on Josh's name. In fact, one of the items I tossed in the hospital bag at the last minute was the baby name book! Joshua was a name that had "staying power" on our short list. Neither of us was willing to cross it off the list. About 12 hours after Josh was born, we had written our top options on the white board in the room and Scott finally looked at me and said, "So...Josh?" And there it was. Ironically, what helped push us over the hump was learning that Joshua has been a top 10 name for the last 20+ years. Scott really felt that would give Josh the ability to be anybody he wants to be - not to be pigeon-holed by the connotation of his name.

Side Note: Joshua is also the only name that Owen seemed to like during our discussions. (You know we were struggling when we were asking our 2 year old his opinion!) Every other name we tossed at Owen got a resounding "No!" but Joshua got chanted around the house for a while. I guess Owen had the name figured out before we did.

Todd - We had our middle name picked out pretty early. Those that know my family know that my brother's middle name (and the name he has always been called), is Todd. While we are certainly honored for Josh to share his name, there is another inspiration behind the name.

Back in college, our friend, Todd Porterfield, was instrumental in bringing Scott and I together. I think he saw our relationship long before Scott or I figured it out - setting us up on TWO dates during our sophomore year and encouraging Scott in my direction at another social function. Todd became one of our dear friends, a roommate of Scott's for a time, and someone we both expected to be part of our life long after college. Todd was unable to be a groomsman in our wedding because he was participating in the Journey of Hope - a charity bike ride across the country to raise money and awareness for people with disabilities. (We thought that was a pretty good excuse to miss a wedding!) Sadly, only a few days from the finish line in Washington DC, Todd was struck by a vehicle and killed while riding in the Journey of Hope. It was very much a tragedy to lose someone of such promise at such a young age. Todd was a guy with amazing integrity - he lead by example, held true to his beliefs, and took actions to affect positive change. You can read more about Todd and his dedication to PUSH America and the JOH here.
Basically, since we lost Todd over 9 years ago, I have thought it would be fitting to try and honor him in some way once we had kids. As I see it, without Todd's prodding, Scott and I would never have started dating and Josh (and Owen) wouldn't be with us today. So, in honor of a dearly missed friend, Joshua's middle name is Todd.


SBM said...

Beautiful post.
And I LOVE the new look of your site!

Cailean said...

Wow that is really meaningful and special. I definitely think we can honor others through our children's names. Thanks for sharing this :)