The Name: Selah Joy Caroline

 “So what’s her name?”  Was the constant question, always.  Even in birth, I couldn’t answer.  For the first time in ten pregnancies, I was not sure of the name by birthing day.  I couldn’t answer, or then it would be official. I just knew I HAD to meet her first.  

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Selah. Karis. Verity. Jubilee. Joy. or Caroline ???  Irv had approved, but was kind to let me choose!  We prayed, voted, posted on the family chalkboard, asked for prayer.  The children had differing votes between Selah, Karis, and Caroline.

 Selah:

“To Praise, Pause and Exalt the Lord;

To take in, breath, weigh, absorb, and reflect upon what has just been said.

God has spoken”

 “Say-La” is the Christian pronunciation and “See-La” is the Hebrew.  Be chose “Say-La”.

The word Selah appears 74 times in the Bible, three times in the book of Habakkuk and 71 times in Psalms.  It is a pause in the book of Psalms, similar to Amen – as it stresses the truth and importance of the previous passage.

 I have had this name in my heart since my pregnancy with Eden, NINE years ago.  Eden and Selah were the names if I was expecting twins. It is a subtle, unique way to evangelize our faith with an atypical Christian baby name.   It is ranked #470 in 2016 social security rankings, and is increasing in popularity.

 Joy:  “Delight or Great Happiness.”

 Caroline:  “Joy, Song of Happiness, and Strong”

Having two fantabulous grandmothers, JOY and CAROLINE,  both turning 90 during this 10th pregnancy, and discovering I was finally having another GIRL, the challenge of how to incorporate both names, was one I was determined to conquer!  

 In June, I was secretly pregnant, and I traveled to see my Grandmother Caroline in Arizona.  Seeing her for the first time in 9 years, it was a visit I had long desired.  At age 89, she lives in a Alzheimer’s group home on hospice outside of Prescott.  Grandma always told me she would live with me once Grandpa passed – and made me agree to never “leave her living alone”.  Every time she visited me, she would point out and verbally confirm, which room was waiting for her.  I always imagined fun times she would have living with me and my children as she aged.   She was a vivacious woman, kind, witty, tough, and adventurous.  As a child I spent sick days, vacation days, doctors / teeth visits, and after school hours with her or at her home.  Countless hours chatting on the porch swing and rockers, baking, quilting, playing checkers and cards, reading books like “Barney Beagle”, talking about her trinkets and family history, exploring the maid-quarters staircase and attic, going out to lunch at Perkins for salad bread bowls, picking berries and making freezer jam, baking apple pie and rice crispy treats, and appreciating her lilacs, flowers, and gardens. I’ll never forget her taking me to Walmart to buy items I needed for college, she wanted to get me “towels and stuff”.  Her mind was in an out during our June visit – but I cherish her comments, “Darci was always around. Be a good girl.  I love you.  You are pillow-y. Why’s your skirt so long?”, and after a kiss on the lips, “Oh, that was a good one!”  When we were saying our final goodbyes, my heart was impressed that  I was having a girl, that I would use the name Caroline, and I had to suppress the urge to tell Grandma Caroline – yet I hadn’t even told Irv I was pregnant yet.

 Grandma Joy is independent, strong willed, perseverant, opinionated, hardworking, youthful, caring, serving and fun!  At 90, she lives alone in a large space, manages multiple rental properties, drives her car, goes shopping,  attends church regularly, volunteers at Hospice Thrift Store, still cooks for large numbers and holidays, sends birthday and anniversary cards to her numerous family members and all my children!, sends letters defending and debating her position on issues, cares for her adult children, and is full of life!  I have so many memories of her investing into my life.  While we lived tons of miles apart, I feel she was a great and frequent part of my childhood, and involved.  Her and Poppy would drive north to visit us in the fall and come to my soccer games, we’d visit her in Daytona Beach, FL over school breaks, and find our summer vacation in Ocean City, NJ with her spending hours at the beach, boardwalk, and having fun!  We loved to play Gin Rummy, have her breakfast treats, home cooked dinners, eat her white sliced cheese, get $1 worth of ice cream or lemon ice, and each day have fun!  My early years we even spent Christmas in CT, before she moved south. I have fond memories of her doing special presents, treats, mailing packages, and leaving me “candy necklace surprises” under my pillow when she would depart home after a visit.  I’ve received multiple advice letters from her through the years! She impressed upon me that I could do anything, be anything, and not to settle for mediocre ever.  Success was possible, and to aim higher than I believed possible.

I knew that both of my grandmother’s names MUST be in included in hers…  

Selah Joy Caroline

Selah: “To Praise, Pause and Exalt the Lord.”

Joy:  “Delight or Great Happiness.”   

Caroline:  “Joy, Song of Happiness, and Strong”

I absolutely love it.  It is HER.  

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One Comment on “The Name: Selah Joy Caroline

  1. Oh my, Darci! What a rich and beautiful heritage! The name that has been chosen for Selah Joy Caroline is perfect. She is such a beauty.

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