Okay, so it’s been a rough little while.  So we’re all exhausted by all the articles we’re sending around, the Biden memes have slowed to a trickle, and it feels as dire as ever but with the added implication that we should have to get back to our actual jobs and responsibilities. It’s not ideal…

…so I’m glad you guys are backing me up so hard.  Like for example, there’s this letter writer who is utterly on my team – or more precisely, not on her friend’s team…

An update on this time Duana did me a solid by yelling at my friend so I didn't have to:

Hi again!

A little bit late on this update and I have no excuse at all, given I just had to drink wine and tweet while my friend did all the hard work of actually having this kid. He repaid her by turning out to be incredibly cute and relaxed though, and hasn't peed on me at all, making him my automatic favourite of their children.

And the name they ended up settling on: Talen Cole.

I LOVE Cole, and i'm pretty sure i've seen it pop up as a recommendation in your NN column before so I figure we're all winners here. Especially us, because I sense it might have killed something in you a little to know there was a Chadd out there, and I wouldn't have been able to write it on birthday cards without crying.

Then there was this letter where the ‘one name each' concept was literally adopted, while being completely not the issue, in the end:

Hi Duana,

First of all, thank you for taking the time to answer my letter! It was by far the second most exciting thing to happen to me in August.

Gordon Alexander Mungo Cook arrived on August 10th and we took 4 days to name him, just narrowly missing your response. Our problem turned out to be the opposite of what I worried about. While I worried that there would be no name we both liked, we ended up both loving two names equally and couldn't decide: Gordon and Gideon (which you mentioned as well!). In the end we decided he just looked like a Gordon and plus couldn't overlook the fact that we know a Gideon and it's not common enough of a name to be used twice in the same circle (if that makes sense). Alexander was a family name on my side and Mungo is my husband's favourite name in the world so a well hidden second middle name it is.

Since naming him we've had maybe 10 people ask us if he's named after Gord Downie. As wonderful as Downie is and as heartbreaking as watching his story unfold lately has been, Gordon isn't named after him specifically and in fact, we're a bit worried it'll all of a sudden become a super popular name (at least in Canada). I mean, we already have an Olivia.

I have to say a part of me is a little bit sad that we never got to use Marnie/Marion. Maybe somebody else will love it as much as I did.

Thank you again for answering my letter. Now that we're done having and naming kids, I'm really excited to read your column just for fun and not scouring for potential names.

For what it’s worth, I do think that Gordon’s going to have a resurgence, and I actually have always thought of it as being a completely ‘Canadian’ name. Having said that, it’s not going to be a one-to-one association with Downie – but I do think subsequent Gords (and I never would have thought I would say there were subsequent Gords en route) might be, as people sort of rediscover what has up to now been resolutely a ‘Dad’ name.

I also rarely disagree with my own advice, but I have to clarify my stance on Mungo – I think I thought it might not fit with the pre-existing Olivia and Frances, but I love, love, LOVE that you used it.

Finally, an update from I Serve At The Pleasure Of...Who?

Hi Duana!
Your response actually came about two weeks after baby boy's arrival, so alas, I didn't get to use any of your fabulous recommendations. But I thank you for responding nonetheless, and I loved how you were able to make some sense out of our naming preferences...will be so helpful for the future.

We named our baby boy Joshua Montgomery, and it's amazing how much it suits him. So far people seem to be respectful of our wish to call him Joshua rather than Josh, but now that he's three months old and we've gotten to know his personality, I don't mind Josh quite like I did before.  Partly because "Josh" sounds a little like "squish", and right now he's so squishy and chubby and precious :)

A thought I had (while nursing, because there's lots of time to think...): Joshuas always seem to have a boyish quality to me. They're not macho men. They're boyish. I'm sure there are examples to prove this theory wrong, but when I think of Josh Lyman and Josh Charles, I love their charming, boyish vibe. And when I look at baby Joshua's face, I see a little of that boyish charm.  Love.

Thanks again for answering my letter!  While you've definitely helped me organize my thoughts on baby names, I'll likely be writing to you again for advice on the next one.  And since we're hoping to tackle procreation like a t-shirt cannon, you may be hearing from me sooner rather than later :)
Thanks again!

I love that you are actually ready to get back on the horse with this already. That you are so happy about how this went down for your family and your tiny “Squish” that you can’t wait to mix it up again…I also really love that Montgomery did in fact come to play.

Keep them coming, guys. Keep having babies so I can keep riding these roller-coaster rides of joy and anxiety and retraction, and continue to believe the children are our future.