A baby walks into a bar…
Oops, wrong joke.
Let me start over.
A couple finds out they’re expecting…
So, what’s the first thing they do?
Register at Babies R’ Us?
Receive eight copies of “What to Expect When You’re Expecting”?
More likely they’ll start thinking about names.
Unless they’re from Ghana.
There, expectant parents have a nifty tradition that takes the stress out of choosing a newborn’s name.
On the eighth day after a child is born an elaborate naming ceremony is held. The first name received is the “soul name” and is determined by the day of the week the child was born. Each of these “soul names” is associated with a planet and a personality.
Pretty cool, huh?
I know what you’re thinking — Doesn’t it get confusing, with all those Wednesdays, Thursdays and other days of the week running around?
Because the idea of soul names and the baby-naming ceremony is a cultural tradition that’s been practiced by people in Ghana for centuries.
So all the moms and dads, the grand-dads and nanas, the aunties and uncles and all the extended family “get” it. They’re Ghanaian, remember?
And that’s the beauty of cultural traditions. They provide a script for those watershed moments in a person’s life, an anchor when you’re in unfamiliar territory — like parenthood.
But, first, you have to be in on the joke.
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