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what is in a name?

Your name is the written embodiment of your persona; scripted across paper for all to see. It is how people see you and how you come to mind. It is who you are.

Colette means “victorious" and I’ve always liked the feeling that my name was strong. Even though I could never find a keychain or other little trinkets displaying my name, it helped me feel unique and capable. My name proves that even though my voice is naturally soft and I've had multiple people describe me as calming, I am also powerful.

When I was a kid, I loved looking through name books and finding new names I had never heard of before. I read the meaning of names of my family members and friends. I took the naming of my dolls very seriously. I would play pretend and give myself new names for the certain characters I was playing. My sisters and I would talk about what we would name our future kids. Whenever I would find a name I liked, I would quickly read the meaning of the name, making sure it was up to my nine year old self’s critique.

Perhaps you don’t think of the literal meaning of a name, but see that it has been passed down from generation to generation. It shows who you descended from and honors those before you.

Perhaps you think about when you got married and having the same last name as your spouse. When we got married, I took Michael’s last name to show our bond. It took me awhile to get used to being Colette Waters after being Colette Battagler for almost 23 years but it fits me now. It's me.

In the Bible, God sent an angel to Joseph saying “…You are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” Many times God changed the names of people to signify that there had been a change in the person, like when Jacob became Israel or when Saul became Paul. This makes me think that God takes naming seriously as well. Even more seriously than little Colette took naming her dolls.

Choosing a name is the first way parents bond with their child. They ponder, research and practice saying it aloud, imagining who their child will be and if their name will fit them well. Last year when we found out we were going to have a son, I started searching for boy names. I would make a list and read it to Michael, surveying his reaction to each one. After eliminating names, adding more and then eliminating again, we kept coming back to Bennett which means “blessed.” On September 17th, Michael and I went to our monthly prenatal doctor’s appointment and then went to the movies. I felt Bennett move for the first time and we talked more about names. We decided we were both pretty smitten with Bennett. It was perfect for our little blessing.

After our two miscarriages, I called our babies Baby Waters. I’ve thought about giving them more specific names and maybe someday I will. But nothing seems to fit quite right quite yet. I know that God calls them by name in Heaven and I’m hoping someday He gives me peace here on Earth on what their names are. Right now though I hold both Baby Waters’ and Bennett in my heart and I also speak about them out loud. They have names and a purposeful life, no matter how short their time on earth was.

Do you have a baby in Heaven? I would love to know their name and would be honored if you shared it with me here. ❤️

💐 This photo is a peek at the Seasons of Hope photoshoots I am doing as a tribute to babies in Heaven, their mamas and women who have experienced infertility.

In this photo: Jen

Hair and makeup: Michele Taylor

Photo Assistant: Laura Campbell

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