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Monday, September 6, 2010

What is in a name?

Usually when I meet people for the first time, the conversation goes something like this:

Stranger: Hi, I'm  -----, it's nice to meet you.

Me : Hi, I'm Maxine, very pleased to meet you.

Are you ever tempted to use a different name? After all, you might never meet this stranger again. As you have guessed already, my name is Maxine. Maxine is an english name of Latin origin and the feminine form of Max and it means "the greatest". Uhm, how awesome is that? Hello! I was named after a Baptist Missionary who's service in Ghana was so exceptional that my parents fell in love with her servant spirit! I still keep in touch with her and she's like another grandma to me. Guess what too? She is a Nurse! I had no idea what profession she was untill my second year in Nursing school! Coincidence?

Now seriously though if you're African like myself, you know the the meaning of your name has a bearing on the kind of person you are expected to be in life and you had better live up to it. It always buffles me when people tell me their names because I immediately wonder what it means. I love being a Maxine even though it is a really old name :) Hopefully the name will make a comeback soon. I already have about 3 Maxine's named after me! Have you ever wondered if you would act or live differently if your name had been different than what you have now?

What do you think is in a name? Has your name had any impact on your life?


simplychic said...

i have a girlfriend who sometimes takes on a whole new identity when she goes out at night. she lies abt everything from her name to what she does for a living. i think it's pretty funny.

anyway, my name is v-neesa, and no one can spell it, pronounce it, remember it etc. it's actually pretty annoying. i've seriously thought abt going by my middle name, especially when applying for jobs. it's ashame to feel that way but i do :(

Tetekai said...

i love my name and i believe your name tells much on the character you have even if you are not aware of it.

yankeenaijababe said...

Funny if I could change my name, I might in the states knowing people usually blunder it so bad...but's it all good, am proud of the name my parents gave me and it's beautiful meaning....Funny, I go by Ync via

Ghana_Hall_of_Shame said...

I don't give much credit to names when it comes to shaping character/ personality. But I guess it works when you believe it does, since we are all very different.
I like names you don't hear everywhere, everyday.


Nanasei said...

My grand father regretted until the day he died that he named one my aunts after his sister who was so mean-spirited and overly aggressive. Why? My aunt turned out exactly like the person she was named after.

For me, I think I live the meaning of my name. At least so I've been told. So yes, name aren't really just names.

Maxine said...

@ Simply chic- do you go by "Vee" or Neesa sometimes? I get frustrated too when people don't say my name right but after a while, I guess you just ignore it and keep stepping... :)

@Tetekai- So I'm guessing you're the last girl? It;s great to love your name :)

@YNC- What does your name mean? I like most of the Nigerian names and their meanings.

@Mike- I do like the name Michael or however it might be spelled these days :)Unusual names are great too. I like hearing different variations of names and their pronunciation in different languages!

@Nanasei- Man, that sucks when that happens. Hopefully we will make better choices about the people we name our kids after, right?