“Just Call Me Belle!”MY VIEWS, PARENTING | Nirasha Jaganath | August 22, 2010 at 10:34 pm
So I toiled. hard. to find the perfect name for my baby to be. I mean I wanted something that had a Hindi meaning, easy to pronounce, short and with no religious connotation. We settled on “Jia”, pronounced Gia or Gee-Ahh and meaning “heart”. I had kept my home Disney princess free – somehow my opinion of strong female characters left me with little respect for the Disney princesses. Don’t judge me, I still let my girls watch stuff, I just don’t promote it.
Anyway after the girls and I watched the Disney on Ice they were captivated. They were probably the only kids in the place that did not know a single princess name when we watched it. Of course it did not take too long that the questions poured in and we watched some of the movies. My younger kid fell in love with Sleeping Beauty/Aurora – more because she wears pink. The older kiddo on the other hand chose Belle/Beauty. No idea why but the fact that she wore yellow, her new favorite color may have something to do with that, except I have no idea if she liked yellow before Belle or because of Belle.
So then she got it into her head that she was Belle and insisted that everyone call her Belle. Annoying and irritating in one. So my middle name being “indulge” I did that. When she was younger she had an obsession with numbers so I bought number transfers and ironed it on all her clothing. I did not want to fight it and she outgrew it fast. The issue was here that she was about to start summer camp – in a class that would become her kindergarten class this fall and she wanted her teacher to call her that name. The teacher would have none of it. Personally I was slightly miffed that they did not indulge her as I figured kids needed an imagination, but partially because I have a soft spot for my kiddo in a special needs class.
As I battled on how to deal with the whole struggle I was scrambling to find a solution. My daughter was disturbed everyday and by now had written an entire book to show her unhappiness at the teacher’s refusal to call her Belle (point in note that I actually do like her teacher very much and did not want to mess with her rules). Then I thought “Superman”!
Superman, Batman, Spiderman – all had 2 names. One superhero name that was secretive and the other public name. So one day from school I mentioned to her that she must be similar to be a superhero, having 2 names and should make all attempt to keep her superhero name, Belle, from being mentioned at school. After it sunk in, she bought the concept.
The relief flooded over me the first day after that when there was no whining and she kept her “identity” a secret. Over a month later she makes no insistence to be called Belle. Sometimes her younger sister calls her just for fun but there is no longer the obsession with it.
I may not suck at this parenting gig after all!