Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Naming Eve

journal

I want to share the story of how Eve got her name.

The first thing I did after discovering I was pregnant in May 2011 was to begin making a list of potential names.  My husband and I couldn't agree on any boy names (well, except Thor, but that was sort of a joke).  We did, however, agree on Molly as a potential name for a girl.  I also liked Brynn, and he suggested Eve.

In September we discovered that we were having a girl.  I was overjoyed.  While I would have been so happy with a boy, I desperately wanted (and want) daughters.  And we had been given one!

But we did not progress any further in our name-choosing.  We both felt that we couldn't name our little girl until we met her face to face.

And then everything fell apart -- late on Friday, November 18, we found out that our daughter had died.  We went home, shocked.  I didn't sleep.  I lay in bed, all too awake to the fact that this world is full of suffering.  That my world was now full of suffering.

When I could manage to feel, I felt afraid.  Terrified.  I was afraid to move, to touch my still-pregnant belly.  The baby girl we had been dreaming of for months was dead.  Dead inside my body.

It is a terrible thing to hold your dead child within you.

And then the next day, the hours stretched too-long before us until we were expected at the hospital.  We tried to prepare, but how can you prepare for the unthinkable?  We made sure our dogs had a home for the weekend, and we packed our suitcase.  I vacuumed, and washed the dishes.

When we had done all that we could bear to do, my husband and I huddled together in the living room.

"What should we name her?" I asked.

My husband shook his head.  We hadn't named our baby when she was alive.  How could we name her now, waiting for the birth of her dead body?  It seemed impossible.

I didn't want to name her Molly.  It didn't seem right anymore.  I think that a part of me wanted to "save" the name for our next daughter, who would hopefully live.  Now I don't think I'll ever be able to use that name.

Finally I remembered that my husband had suggested the name Eve.  It wasn't my favorite name of the few we had picked out, but I wanted him to have something to give our daughter.  I had given her life, and a death bed.  He could at least give her a name.

I asked him if he still liked the name Eve.  He did.  We didn't have the heart to wrestle over a middle name.  And so her name is simple, and lovely -- Eve.  Although it was not my favorite name at the time, I have fallen in love with it almost as much as I have fallen in love with its owner.

I found out not very long ago what Eve means.  It means "life."

Life.

Even though she's dead, even though she died before she breathed,  it is so right.

Eve.

Life.

I think it's perfect.

Eve's name in the sand

8 comments:

  1. This is such a heartwarming post. I am speechless.

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  2. Thank you so much!

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  3. Hi Eve, I found your link from walking with you. I am so sorry about your sweet baby girl. I must of been even more difficult that she was your first. My son was stillborn at 20 weeks, one month ago. It has been so very hard. I love the name Eve, and her name in the sand is spectacular! Thanks for sharing

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  4. Hi, Tesha. I'm sorry that you've come to know the horror of stillbirth. Much love and biggest hugs to you. :(

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  5. "It is a terrible thing to hold your dead child within you."
    It is. I remember my midwife saying that I could safely wait a few days before inducing and I thought that staying pregnant just felt to weird. It was wrong. She was gone.
    Hugs, friend. I love her name. <3

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  6. I felt the same way when given that choice, too, Erin. Even the one day we waited until going into the hospital to be induced was horrible -- to still be pregnant, but pregnant with our dead child. It was a terrible day.

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  7. wow, Beth...simply wow. Thank you so much for sharing. This is beautiful. I love the name Eve too :)

    Isn't it amazing that God cares about and delights in the smallest details of our lives and our baby's lives? He places a sacred essence on each name. He specifically named Lily Katherine and Eve. The Lord worked out the details of Lily's name, long before I truly realized the depth behind the meaning. Long before any doctor confirmed she was indeed, a she, I knew in my heart she was. It was like the name Lily was already stamped on my heart and I knew that was her identity. I named her Lily, meaning purity and innocence, because she was to a symbol of my renewed purity and my redemption in Jesus Christ (I was in an unplanned, teenage pregnancy out of wedlock.) Little did I know how much she would live up to her name. When i was choosing her middle name, the Lord gave me Katherine. At the time, I had no idea Katherine also means purity. Both her names, both mean purity, When I delivered her, I was suddenly overwhelmed with how her name took on a whole new meaning. She will forever be pure and innocent. Untainted, spotless. We serve a beautiful God.

    Eve, LIFE. Ahh, it gives me chills. So amazingly perfect.

    Beautiful name in the sand photo! <3

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  8. That's so beautiful, Hannah! I love how God provides for every little detail, even in the mist of tragedy. Thanks for sharing that with me! <3

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"I am glad you are here with me."
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King