Baby Name Meanings: Why We Chose Fiona


There’s no doubt about it: Picking a name for a new baby can be rather stressful. When my husband and I were casting about for a baby name for our second daughter, we debated for many weeks. Eventually, we stumbled upon the beautiful name Fiona, and we knew that we had found the perfect moniker for our new baby.

We didn’t know the sex of our next child, so we had to come up with both boy and girl baby names. Unfortunately, we couldn’t find a single boy name we both liked. Nicholas was okay, though very popular at the time; my brother-in-law suggested Hector, which wasn’t exactly embraced. I liked Gordon, my dad’s name, especially because of the alliteration with Geddes (our last name). Linus was on the list but didn’t sound right with our last name. I started to worry we’d never find a boy’s name that my husband and I both liked!

We tried taking our family history into account when choosing baby names. Geddes is a Scottish name, and with my Irish maiden name (Kelly), we considered many picks from these parts of the world. I also love Russian names -- the language and its literature were my major in college -- so names such as Anastasia were also considered.

We named our first child Isabel, which to me, was easy to pronounce and spell and had a musical quality. I wanted the same for my next child. I loved Ruby, June, and Rosemary for girl names, but my husband would have none of these.

Finally, we hit upon Fiona, but not because we found it in a baby name book. Instead, I happened to be reading the novel, Fiona Range by Mary McGarry Morris when I was pregnant, and we both thought it was perfect. It’s easy to say and spell, plus it hits the Scottish and Irish note. Her full name is Fiona Kelly Geddes, and it truly suits her.

I learned that choosing a baby name takes time and often, many hours of research. Don’t get frustrated if you don’t immediately find a name both you and your partner love. The perfect baby name will come to you eventually!

Photo by Zach Vessels on Unsplash

by Jennifer Kelly Geddes