Maxie's Name

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Since the early days of my courtship with Ted, we spoke about the potential names we would give our potential children.  He suggested that if we had a girl one day, we could name her Sadie - Ted's grandma's name (Gigi's mother's name).  As you know, Beth beat us to that one.  I think our niece Sadie is the perfect "Sadie"  It was meant to be.  My "pioneering" days in Israel were the backdrop to the names I had picked out: Eitan for a boy, Shachar for a girl.  My girl name got SHUT DOWN.  Shachar had been a boys name meaning darkness or blackness.  I always liked it because it sounded mysterious and all of the best looking people on my kibbutz were named Shachar (well,  2 of the best looking ones).  Contemporary Israelis often take boys names and make them girls names.  I considered myself a contemporary Israeli.  Ted reminded me that I am actually not Israeli at all.  Point well taken.

When we found out that we were pregnant, we knew immediately that we were having a boy.  Until that point, we always imagined that we would have a girl.  Not sure why, but we did.  Ted had a bunch of girl cousins who worshiped him, not to mention our nieces.  It seemed like we spent lots of kid time with little girls.  But, we just KNEW we were having a boy.  The ultrasound just confirmed what we knew to be true.  We easily settled on the perfect name: Judah.  It was wonderful in many ways.  It was a J name and therefore could represent 3 of our collective grandfathers: Jerry, Jules and Jack.  It was a strong Jewish name, clearly helping to instill a strong Jewish identity for life.  It also had a bit of a rastafari flavor, as in Lion of Judah (which is obviously also a Biblical reference too).  The middle name we decided on was Maxwell.  M for Marilyn, my grandmother.  Maxwell, because we loved the name Max and because we fell in love to the music of R&B genius - Maxwell.  Our first dance at our wedding was to his song, "Lifetime".  We held on tight to the name even though our parents begged for the scoop.  Finally one evening I told my mom.   She didn't like it.  She called me a few days later to tell me that "Jackie doesn't like it either".  What?  She told Jackie?  So much for secrets.  I told Ted.  "My parents don't like it either".  Darn!  I told my dad, "I like the idea of a J name.  What about Jehosephat?"  He liked Jehosephat better than Judah?  Unheard of!  My step-mother loved it!  FINALLY!  Also, Beth loved it.  It reminded her of the dead husband on the show "Weeds".  Still, we were uneasy about the idea of our parents not loving our perfect name.  We went back and forth between Judah Maxwell and Maxwell Judah for many months.  I remember sitting around the table one afternoon at Ethan and Bianca's house and going back and forth until we finally looked at each other and said "Maxwell Judah Leviss"....it flows.  We would call him Max or Maxie.  As soon as we made the decision, we knew it was right.  Max came and it was obvious, he was meant to be a Max.

One of the MANY things that was rushing through my head when Max was lying in the hospital bed connected to the many tubes, barely clinging to life was, "He can't die!  He has the most perfect name!"  I recognize that might sound silly but it still haunts me.  There will never be another Maxie in my life that is mine.  My little Maxwell is gone.  He was a one and only.  He was perfect in every way, even by name and he only got to live that perfection for 9 and a half months.  It makes my bones hurt to think it.  It makes my veins hurt.  It makes my heart and my head hurt.  My Maxwell, my Max, my Maxie - I miss you more every second.  I love you with ALL of my heart and soul.  You are forever in my every breath, in every beat of my heart.  You are my everything and my all.  I love you Maxie.  I love you always.

1 comment:

Myyummyinyourtummy said...

I wish I could give you a hug. XO

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