Naming your child is actually one of the hardest decisions ever! Mainly because you both have to agree on the decision (every conversation always ending in so many arguments). And you just know that every time you come up with a name your partner will turn around and say “Oh no, I knew a [insert name here] and they were a complete bitch!” or vice versa. In our case though these arguments didn’t happen too often because I knew what name I wanted, it was just a matter of convincing Stuart.
(Picture: My nana holding baby me and my brother who clearly was proud of his missing front tooth).
When I was little, every Saturday, I would spend the day at my Granddad and Nana’s house (my mums parents). I remember waving my mum off from the doorstep and wondering what adventures we would get up to for the day. My granddad would be off to the pub on a Saturday so it was just the two of us, my nana and me. One thing we always did was saunter in to town so my Nana could do her daily shopping. She would buy me four party pies (pork pies) to eat as we were walking round the shops. And she would always buy fresh sliced meats and cheese so we could have crackers with them for our dinner when we got home. Our last stop would always be to the bakery to buy my dad two vegetable pasties for when he came to pick me up from work. Because that was the type of woman she was, she always thought of others and would have done anything for anybody. We would then head home where my nana would pull out this long leather table/bench, loads of plastic toy food and a till and we would play shop. It’s also where my love of The Jungle Book began, no matter if it was the fifth time that day I asked if we could watch it she would rewind the VHS (remember those?!) and play it again and again for me. God I miss those days, I miss her.
(Picture: One of my nana’s favourite sayings she said to me and many other family members was “You are my favourite.” so I crafted this frame and have it hanging in our living room. Lilac and purple were also her favourite colours).
My nana’s full name was Ivy May Bishop. I have always loved the name Ivy, her name. I knew that if I was to have a daughter one day that this name would be perfect. My nana was born in July, as am I. My due date was the 6th August but my little girl came three weeks early and so also shares our birthday month. Finding out we were having a girl was just so overwhelming and meant such a lot to my family. Two years previously we lost our most amazing woman, our Ivy.
(Picture: My nana and me. Taken one christmas time, several years after her diagnosis, so it was rare that she smiled in photos but we managed to capture this one).
In 1998 my nana was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, which ruled her life for 15 years till the day she died. Watching this horrible disease take away everything you love about someone and leave them a shell of their former self; well there are no words to describe that. I wouldn’t wish this disease on anybody and the affects it has on their loved ones. She was so kind, so thoughtful and so selfless and so strong willed that she didn’t deserve that at all.
(Picture: I had this Ivy tattoo done not long after she died).
And so naming our daughter after her was a way to keep her memory alive. To be able to tell our little Ivy all about her namesake as she gets older and to hope that my nana lives on through her. I can already see parts of her personality shining through in Ivy. Especially, the strong-willed-Bishop trait. I only wish that she could see me on this path through motherhood. That she could see what a beautiful, little girl we have created. Whose name, when I speak it makes me smile and reminisce about happier times shared with such a wonderful woman.
(Picture: Nana & Grandad).