A name. The first thing you’re given and the last thing remembered in life.
Yesterday I posted about some interesting Mongolian names I’ve come across so far. Today I was looking into the meanings of my own name:
Anna – Full of grace; or favour
Louise – Famous or Renowned Warrior
Brown – Well, it’s a colour. But more on that later.
I don’t think my parents were thinking much of meaning when they named me. In fact, I was named in the vegetable aisle of the Hart Save-on-Foods when I was a few days old. (Yep. Me and the broccoli. Isn’t that just special.)
Once I told my mom that I thought Louise wan an old-lady name and she said they never thought of that. “Anna Louise” just sounded nice together. But back to the whole meaning thing:
Grace has been a big theme for me the past few months. Both because I have been learning the importance of extending grace to others but also about the amount of grace I have been given. Being ‘graceful’ is more than being smooth and ballerina-like. It’s a character trait.
Famous Warrior. Now what does THAT even mean in these days? I am not exactly a warrior…on the outside anyways : ) In some circles, rumour has it that it means ‘woman of prayer’ or ‘prayer warrior’. That’s something else I’ve been learning this year. There is a battle going on, always; whether we acknowledge it or not. One way I can pick up my sword is to pray. And so I do. This is what I’m learning.
Brown. A surname. Last names are rare in Mongolia. Don’t take yours for granted. It may seem straightforward, but there is more to this if you look.
This name tells people who I am. I am a Brown. I belong to my family and they belong to me. Their stories are important, and are a part of who I am and how I came to be. I would not exist without them. My name is a part of my heritage.
My name is a gift as well. You might know that my brothers and I have a different last name than my parents. You see, that is because my dad died when we were young. My Mom remarried, and that’s okay.
I am the only daughter of my father, Daniel Brown, and my name is a part of my Dad that I can always keep. Anna Brown is more than something that sounds nice. He gave me his name. His identity.
One day perhaps my last name might change, but I intend to live up to my name the best I can while I have it. It is an honour to carry.
My name is Anna Brown.
I am not Anna Anybody Else.