Last night we went round to my in-laws for our now almost weekly sibling dinner. It was lovely.
We talked about names for my nephew.
I grabbed the baby book, and started leafing through. I had a fair idea of what kind of names my sister-in-law and her husband like, and so I read out various names and they gave me their opinion.
Earl was sitting on the coach. It's his default position after dinner. I sit on the table, my uncomfortably pregnant sister in law is sprawled on another coach with her husband squeezed into the corner. My BIL and his wife are at the table, opposite me. Earl sits on the coach and yells out silly suggestions like "Dragon". He plays the role of the comic relief in his family.
We start making fun of BIL, because he is the youngest child and the only one in the family who gets rilled up by such things. We tease him about naming his kids after things he likes (like "Panda", and "Juice"), and he keeps saying "Don't be silly", and that makes us laugh some more. My brother in laws wife (lets call her Mrs A), and I go through all the names that we like that we know our husbands don't and offer them to SIL.
I say that I really want to give the the idea of my nephews name so I can take the credit. But the truth is I just don't want them taking any of our names.
Earl and I have four names picked out, two girls names and two boys names. Plus middle names. We love them, and we talk about how much we love them all the time. Theoretically I know that someone might take them, but if I have the power to stop it I will. And now my SIL and her husband have a list of around 8 names that they really like that are not OUR names. And I feel a bit relieved.
Earl's Mum comments on how funny all Earl's suggestions are. I said "You wouldn't think they were funny if the one who suggested it had some say in the naming of your kids". Everybody laughed, Earl's Mum the loudest, I think because she loves it when we talk like we will definitely have kids. She can't handle any suggestion that things won't work out for her kids.
And then I went home, and in the middle of a TV show I burst into tears. Earl was very confused. But at things like that, when we are all together, and joking about the names we might give our kids, I forget.
Then I come home and remember. I might not get to name two girls and two boys.
I might not get to name any.