When I first found out I was pregnant, the very first thing I got excited about was choosing a name!
I have been weirdly obsessed with names ever since I was a child.
I don't really know but names have always just fascinated me.
I bought a Baby Name book when I was about 10 years old, and I used to read it every night - I loved looking up the meanings of names, their backgrounds, and most of all I loved discovering new and unusual names I'd never heard before and learning how to pronounce them.
My own name was never one I particularly liked - Hayley was neither overly popular nor unusual. It was very middle of the road when I was growing up.
I knew a few other Hayley's, but not many.
The names meaning wasn't particularly interesting - it simply means "Hay Clearing".
The names history was also pretty boring - it was derived from an Old English surname.
When I read through the book of names, I always wished that my name had a lovely meaning or an interesting history, or was very unusual.
I asked my parents why they'd chosen the name Hayley - hoping to hear a lovely story about how they'd arrived at the decision - but I was told "Dad wanted to call you Victoria, Mum wanted to call you Kirsty - we couldn't agree. We saw a film with Hayley Mills in and agreed we both liked the name Hayley".
Not a particularly interesting story!
So I got over the fact that my name had nothing particularly interesting about it, but my obsession with names continued and has never left me.
And so when I was expecting, I spent HOURS every day trawling through name websites - looking for unusual and beautiful names.
If I'd been having a girl I'd have been utterly spoilt for choice as there are so many unusual and beautiful girls names that I love.
But a boys name was a challenge for me, as I have always struggled to find any that I particularly liked.
For me, there was three very important factors when choosing his name....
1. It had to have meaning to us. I didn't just want any old name that we simply liked the sound of, I wanted there to be a special meaning behind it.
2. It had to have an interesting history or a nice meaning. I didn't want a name that had only appeared recently and was a very modern "made up" kind of name with no history.
3. It had to be uncommon.
The uncommon rule was the most important one for me.
I have always wanted to make sure that my children were the ONLY ones in their class with their name. Infact if they could be the only one one in the school with their name, all the better!
At first I stated that the name I picked had to NOT have appeared on the UK Top 100 list for 2012.
I downloaded the list from the Office Of National Statistics and ruled out any names that appeared in the Top 100.
This meant ruling out names that I liked such as Noah and Declan - but I was too worried that there would end up being others with those names in his class at school, so they were crossed off the list.
Eventually my "no Top100" list became even stricter - I decided that I wanted a name that LESS than 5 children had been given in 2012 in the whole of the UK.
On the list of baby names, you can view all the names that children were given in the previous year as long as at least 3 people were registered with the name.
If less than 3 people were born with the name, then it won't appear on the list at all.
I would have LOVED to choose a name that didn't appear on the list at all in my childs year of birth, so that I would know he was one of less than three kids born with that name in his year of birth.
But it seemed like an impossible challenge!
Eventually, we mentioned the name Tyne.
It was actually Jon that suggested it during a jokey conversation.
I told him that a woman on a naming forum had named her child Thames after the river.
He laughed and said that was a rather silly name - I laughed too and said "Maybe we should call ours Mersey?" after the River Mersey that runs through Liverpool, my home town.
Jon laughed and suggested his own hometown river - the river Tyne.
We laughed - but then we stopped. I said "Actually, I like that!"
He said "Yeah I do too...."
I looked the name up, and read the history of the river Tyne - I loved the sound of the name.
The only famous namesake was an American actress popular in the 80s, Tyne Daly.
The final decision came when I typed it in to the Office Of National Statistics spreadsheet - Success!!!
Only THREE baby boys had been registered in 2012 with the name Tyne (and no baby girls!)
So our minds were made up.
As I've discussed before, we came in for a lot of criticism with our choice of name - a lot of people hated it and were very vocal about it.
A lot of people still look at us like we've got two heads now when they ask his name!
But luckily we now live in a part of the country were "Unusual" names are far more "Usual" and Tyne has quite a few friends with quite unusual names now so I doubt he'll come in for any criticism in years to come.
And I know that I put a LOT of thought and effort into naming my child, I didn't just hear a name on the street and decide it sounds ok...so I don't really care what other people have to say about it!
The moment of truth came last month when the Office Of National Statistics released this years baby name stats - I nervously typed in Tyne's name to see how many others had been registered.
To my amazement - the name is not on the list!!! Which means that LESS than three children were registered with the name Tyne in his birth year - so at most, there are only 2 other possible Tyne's born around the same time as him out there.
As a name nerd, that makes me SO happy - I have achieved my longstanding and seemingly unattainable naming goal!
(I know, I know - I'm such a geek!)
What things were important to you when choosing a baby name? Did you give it a lot of thought? As always, I'd love to hear from you!
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