Friday, April 15, 2011

Who will she favor?

As the arrival gets closer and closer, the anticipation builds as we await the birth of our daughter. But one question we frequently ask one another is, "Who will she favor the most?"

Not a week goes by when my husband and I don't sit back, pause and intently ponder who our little girl will look like and act like the most. I guess I should start out by explaining the meaning of her name, Nandi. It means "strong-willed," and before we knew the meaning, my husband told me he wanted to name his daughter Nandi. "I've always loved that name. Shaka Zulu's mother was named Nandi; and I made a decision long ago to give my daughter that name," he said.

Thanks to my dad, I knew about Shaka, who was  king of the Zulus back in the 1800's in southeast Africa. When I was younger, he would watch a movie called Zulu Dawn, just about every year. He would then talk about a "great Zulu king and warrior named Shaka." Neither the movie nor the king were related, but my dad made me want to learn more about the king named Shaka. So, when my husband told me about his desire to name our daughter Nandi, I was thrilled.
Agreeing on a name, we decided to learn the meaning. So the internet search began, and we quickly discovered the meaning. I thought to myself, "I hope we're not setting ourselves up to deal with a stubborn little girl that needs to be reprimanded every hour on the hour." Despite my concern about the meaning of the name, I still loved it.

But since then, we wonder about Nandi's physical attributes, along with her future characteristics. "I hope she doesn't have my ears," said my husband. "You have nice ears - why would you say that?" I asked him. "I looked like Dumbo with the big ears as a little boy; that wouldn't be good for our little girl," he said while chuckling.

So, we both agreed we hope she doesn't have big ears, but who will she act like? I can definitely say, she's full of energy right now - pushing on my bladder; kicking me whenever she feels like it; and pushing out her little head (or bottom) every which way when the mood hits her.

But once she enters the world in a few weeks, will she have a calm demeanor like her mother, or will she be full of energy and loud, in a good way, of course, like her father? Will she have a desire to play a musical instrument, become an athlete, or both? Will she be short like me or will she have some height like my father-in-law?

Both my family and his wonder the same thing, too. But interestingly enough, my father-in-law is concerned about one thing:  Nandi having enough milk to drink when she enters the world. My husband was talking to his mother one day on the phone and she said, "Your dad is out pricing milk (formula). He wants to make sure you guys have enough money to feed the baby." I thought that was cute and sweet of him, especially considering the fact that I plan on breastfeeding.

But with all of our unanswered questions regarding our little girl, there is one thing we can all agree on:  we pray that little Nandi is strong and healthy, whenever she decides to greet the world with her presence.

Chandra Cleveland is a Senior Communications Specialist for Texas Health Resources who is expecting Nandi to enter the world in June.

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