Geoffrey Olive Guthrie was born on October 4, 2011 at 8:11am. She weighed eight pounds, fourteen ounces and had a full head of dark hair. She did not scream when she came out, but peacefully gazed across the delivery room at everyone there to witness her birth. I knew at that moment she would be a peaceful child, and every day since then I have learned that she is a true joy, a calm and balanced person, and that her laugh is the best thing since coconut cake.
A Girl Named Geoff
To most people, Geoffrey girl goes by Olive – her middle name. To family, she is Geoffie or Geoffrey Girl. As of now, I am “on the fence” about what she’ll go by in school or what her friends may call her — I know it is awful — the child is almost eight months old! But, this is because I have been afraid of ridicule or confusion over a girl having such a decidedly male name. That, and I’ve always loved the name Olive. We plan to have a Lu’au for her (Hawaiian naming ceremony) for her first birthday, so we should know by then…I hope!
The “original” Geoff was my husband’s late brother. He died at age seventeen in a bicycle accident, and the loss of his life touched everyone in my husband’s family deeply. The first time Greg and I kissed was the night we spent together on the eve of the twelfth anniversary of Geoff’s death, and that was the night I knew we would be together forever. Olive is a family name on both sides — my paternal great-grandmother Olive Rochelle is still alive and well at 104 years old; Greg’s maternal great-aunt was also Olive. She and Geoff were buddies.
Like most people, we wanted our first born to have a name that meant something to us, and combining the names of three very influential people in our livesjust made sense. So, there you have it, as unusual and beautiful as it is.