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Memoirs Of An Embarrassing Mother – Part Three

It isn’t everyday you get personalised sheets…..

Illustration courtesy of Ruth Pickering

Naming a baby isn’t the easiest job in the world. So many things to think of, so many names to avoid. Try and find a name that suits the baby and doesn’t upset any family members. How did we go about choosing a name? We actually bought a book, read it through hundreds of times both coming up with suggestions. Can’t choose that one. I used to go to school with someone with that name and they were really odd! Can’t choose that name with our surname, it doesn’t sound right.

Then it was the complicated initial effect when we did have a potential name. What do the letters make up? Having worked in offices dealing with people, you would be absolutely amazed at the names people have given their children. Sometimes I wonder if it was purely for the laugh or to make dinner party conversation. With Social Media these days even the simplest of names can have negative affects…. Just take Susan Boyle for instance!

We weren’t going to be like that we would cover every eventuality. After spending months deliberating, we had guessed we would be having a boy. Family history had something to do with that. I am still not entirely sure, 25 years later, we ever even had a girl’s name! That could have been another whole embarrassing story!

We decided on the name Daniel for the first name. I had a great Uncle Dan, we both like Daniel and both liked Dan – sorted. Middle name, we wanted a family name. That was easy there were so many Henry’s on both sides of the family that this was the obvious choice. The baby would be Daniel Henry Austin. Couldn’t think of anything that would embarrass him either as an adult or child, other than his mother telling the story, when baby Dan is 25. Daniel was born at Rush Green Hospital in Dagenham and much to everyone’s amusement the nurses and midwives thought it hilarious that the baby had got personalised sheets from the moment he was born. Personalised sheets we asked? Yes all the bedding is stamped in big letters DHA (Dagenham Health Authority). You can’t always cover every eventuality but as they said even Royalty doesn’t have personalised sheets that quickly!

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