He asked me where my favorite place on campus was, so we walked there. The Reading Room at Drake University was a spot that my mom and I had discovered during Freshman Orientation in 2003 and I'd loved it ever since. Tall, arched windows lined the south wall overlooking University Ave and you could watch the world go by if you had the notion to. The three remaining walls were lined with built-in bookshelves (it was, afterall, called the READING Room) and overstuffed chairs were scattered in groups for studying.
On this particular evening in 2006 that I became a tour guide for Gerard, there was an exhibit of photos from Drake's first several classes of graduates. Classes from 1881, '82, '83 and on into the early 1900's stared back at us as we read the names of the students in each group. The classes were small enough that each image listed every name, first and last...
Call us old souls in young bodies, but as we read through several names, something sparked. We weren't officially dating yet but just getting to know each other and somehow, when the name "Adelaide" was read outloud, I immediately thought, "Oh Lord, we just named our first daughter."
Thankfully, we started dating soon after that tour of the Reading Room and 9 months later, were engaged. When Gerard is asked his side of the story, he'll say that he didn't think of Adelaide as a future daughter's name at the time, but when we were dreaming years later of children's names, he was the one who brought it up. With the middle name rolling off his tongue as well. I wholeheartedly agreed.
There was a moment in our pregnancy that we waivered on the middle name and tried something else, but ultimately stuck to our guns and thankfully when she came out, she looked like an Adelaide Leigh. We had successfully kept a secret for 7 years (which, if you ask my sister is a HUGE feat for me!). Throughout those 39 weeks, there were moments when we'd talk to her and use her name, but we really tried not to say it outloud much so we wouldn't slip-up in public. So even now, I'm getting used to saying it and using her full name.
Now, the nicknames...Gerard uses Addie and I use Laidy. Mostly, I use Laidy because she was so modest in her
, barely letting us know that she was in fact a girl. I want to always remember that modesty and lady-like quality about her. It can also serve as a reminder to her as she grows up.
See? She even has her pinkie raised in this image-always the little lady:
After letting our families know of her full name, my side of the family immediately picked up on a nickname for her-Laidy Bug. Totally appropriate coming from my mom who had the lady bug as a mascot of sorts during her flight attendant years.
Her name has "fit" in so many ways as we've lived through these sleep-deprived two weeks that I know we were in that Reading Room at the right moment way back in 2006. Amazing how God can place the right things literally in front of our faces to keep in our proverbial back pocket for use years in advance. I love how He works it out like that.