Monday, 4 November 2013

The Noun That Changed My Life...

I'm sitting in church a few Sunday's ago and I look down.  Dangling from one of my belt-loops was a tag which read, I am responsible for collecting ... - it is the policy of the Sunday School that whoever signs a child in, takes the tag, holds onto it, and at the end of the service collects that child ... but only if the tag with that child's name on it is produced on collection.  Whilst I sat there (listening to the sermon of course), a strange realisation dawned on me, the name, those three words right there on the card, are so much more than just three words.  The schema (mental processors) attached to that name are so vast and wonderful.  I am in danger of sounding all new-age and airy-fairy here, but it was just such a wonderful moment, looking down and realising that that name is unique to my daughter.  Those three words bring with them so much love and joy...three words that I jointly chose for a child that I jointly help create (although she does look remarkably like the postman :)).

Everyday nouns seem so strange if you say them over and over again.  Anything really.  Let's use the word camera; ordinary, everyday...nothing much to it.  But say it over and over again and it begins to sound and seem somewhat strange (C_A_M_E_R_A: I can hear you sounding it out as you read). When it comes to my daughter's name, it is rather strange how the presentation of these particular words, in that specific order, provides a real sense of ownership in my mind - a sense of belonging, a sense that I am responsible for, and dedicated to, that person which happens to makes up those three simple words; A flower, God's unconditional forgiveness and love, and my family name...all three making up one fabulous little girl. 



  1. Appreciated your thoughts here. I've had similar thoughts about my own daughter's name while sitting in church. And here's another interesting thing to add: in one of Radiolab's episodes they explore "musical language," and in one segment they determine that when a word or phrase is repeated over and over again, it starts to sound like song. Which is a kinda cool poetic thing to think about when you repeat your kid's name over and over again.

  2. Hey Neal...

    Thanks for your comment; I had a interesting...pretty cool.


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