Somewhere in the recesses of my mind is a memory of Jim telling me that our last name had been "Americanized" several generations ago. I thought this was so tragic -- I would have been proud to carry an "obviously" Scottish name!
I mentioned this to my mother-in-law at lunch on Thursday, and she looked surprised. Hmm. Maybe Jim had wrong information, or, being the dramatic romantic that I am, I'd made the whole thing up.
Either way, Irish- and Scottish-sounding names like Ian, Owen, Collin, Aidan and the like had long been on my list of beloved baby names. Only recently did I add Duncan to a very short list that I had running for Itty Bitty; I'd not yet even mentioned the name to Jim.
Saturday afternoon, as we were in triage, we thumbed through a baby name book loaned to us by the obstetrical staff. I'm not sure why I thought we could concentrate, even under the looming deadline of needing to name him NOW. So much information had just been thrown at us -- insurance, legal, medical care for me, cause and diagnosis for our unborn son. Our heads were spinning.
One of the hardest pieces of news to receive was that although Duncan's heart had only recently stopped, he had been in fetal distress for sometime -- most likely from about 20 weeks (mid-April), given his measurements and size. Oh, how proud I was to be his mommy at that moment, knowing that he was so valiant to survive in the shadow of death!
As I unseeingly flipped through the alphabet of names, I thought to look up the meaning of Duncan.
As Jim looked over my shoulder, our eyes landed on the description "fighter."
And just that easily, he was named.
There are some comic details about how we came to the decision of a middle name of Thomas, and maybe I'll share those in a future post. But for now, I realized that as you all are reading the news of our son and offering up your sympathies and condolences to our family, you needed to know more about Duncan than his stats.
I need the world to know that my little boy was strong and mighty. He fought for his life for a month, and although he eventually lost his battle, Jim and I are SO ridiculously proud to call him our son.