A few months ago I received an enquiry from a lovely lady in Bristol about a naming day ceremony for her son. As we began to chat further, it transpired that this lady and her husband had adopted their son. They were looking for a Celebrant to conduct a very special adoption naming day ceremony after they had been to court that morning in order to mark this milestone as a family unit. As we started to chat further, exchange emails and follow each other on social media, it became apparent that this had been a long and winding road in order to get to this point.
‘Not a fictional Mum’ – as the lady is known by her social media handle – has made great waves within the adoption community to tell, and most importantly, share her story. This has been at times an incredibly difficult journey, documenting not only her fertility story, but also the story of how they began the process of finding their little boy, aka ‘Nemo’, and becoming the family that they so wanted to be.
As with any legal process, it can take a very long time, and aside from the added delays that the pandemic would have brought, they had finally secured the date for their adoption celebration. This was a day that they were able to stand proudly in court with their closest family and friends and to celebrate legally becoming a family. The icing on the cake was that they absolutely were going to have a party and celebrate in style.
As with all the couples and families that I work with, it is incredibly important to me that I get to know them. So, having been booked for this fabulous celebration, the next step was to meet the family unit and talk through all the different options available to them on the day, but most importantly, to get to know each other.
Naming Day Ideas
There are so many different options available to you when you are thinking about a naming day. As I state on my website, this isn’t just limited to a new baby. A child can be any age in order to have a naming day ceremony. It may also be a stepchild or an adopted child. With all of my ceremonies, inclusivity is always important, so I encourage families to think about including other family members and friends to be part of the ceremony so it really is a day to remember.
I gave the family lots of content and ideas to think about at the initial planning meeting to include tree and rose planting, wishes in a time capsule, candle lighting, confetti canons, names embossed on pebbles or special stones, personalised bunting, and the list goes on.
Having discussed all the things that ‘Not a fictional Mum and Dad’ wanted for their son, I then went away to write the ceremony content as a first draft in order for their approval. Top of my list is listening to what my couples and families want in terms of their ceremony content. When I received an email back to say, ‘This made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up! It’s beautiful.’, I was elated. It’s often a slightly nervous wait for a Celebrant when you are waiting on feedback from a couple or family, so it’s always great to get such a positive response.
Naming Day Ceremony
Keeping things current and up-to-date, we agreed that we would have wishes and promises made for this very special boy from his ‘Guide Parents.’ His parents also stood and shared their love and wishes for him, as did his Grandparents. All so incredibly beautiful and emotional for everyone attending.
Dinosaurs are a firm favourite of this little boy, so this was also weaved into all the special details of the day with the finale of the ceremony being concluded with confetti canons and the classical theme tune to Jurassic Park.
I often talk on my social media platforms about the fact that as a Celebrant we are with couples and families on the most important days of their lives. It’s an honour and a privilege, it really is. To be the final part of this family’s journey was so incredibly special. To deliver a ceremony and to receive feedback from the Mum to say that, aside from her wedding day, this was one of the best days of her life. It doesn’t get much better than that.
I really love this job. It’s one of the best things I have done in my life. The ceremony on that beautiful Friday afternoon will stay with me forever. Thank you to this beautiful family for choosing me as your Celebrant. From the bottom of my heart, I wish you all the love and happiness in the world. You deserve it all and more.