Candles by Arne Hulstein via Flickr

Appellation Mountain arrived early in 2008, and as the community has grown, I’ve realized that a relatively small percentage of the visitors are actually attempting to name a baby-on-the-way.

Some of us are name nerds, some of us are all about celebrity gossip, some of us just like language and words.  And some of us are too young to start families, but are just planning for a far distant future.

But part of the audience reading this right now includes those who are trying to conceive.  For some of us, that will prove to be a long and difficult road.  October 15th is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day, and this post is meant for anyone struggling with issues of infertility or loss.

I’m never sure how to talk about this.  It seems terrible and common, and terribly common.  Too many women I know have struggled to start a family.  That brings me to the only thing I do know: talking about it matters.  It’s a real loss, and we all deserve the opportunity to grieve.

So if you’re here hoping and wishing for a child, this is acknowledgement that you’re not alone.  And if you’re grieving, you’ve probably already discovered the resources through the October 15th website.

Here’s wishing you hope and healing.  I understand that you might not be comfortable participating in the conversations here, but please know that you are welcome.

About Abby Sandel

Whether you're naming a baby, or just all about names, you've come to the right place! Appellation Mountain is a haven for lovers of obscure gems and enduring classics alike.

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What do you think?


  1. 1. Peter – from the story in the Bible that a house built on rock withstands storms (miscarried at 7 weeks)
    2. Belle – from God’s promise to create beauty from ashes (miscarried at 8 weeks)
    3. Trey – my third positive pregnancy test (only lasted a couple days)
    4. Quincy – fifth positive pregnancy test (only lasted a couple days)
    5. Noah – (the only child we know for sure was a boy) from God’s promise to comfort those who mourn (miscarried at 10 weeks)
    6. Wren – 7th positive pregnancy test (only lasted a couple days)
    7. Vesper – 8th positive pregnancy test (only lasted a couple days) – I liked the imagery of an evening star as the first light in the falling darkness.

    I gave my two living children names that I hope will give them strength in this life. To the seven whose lives began and ended in my womb, I gave them names that would give me strength. Thank you for publicly honoring this day and giving families the courage to grieve honestly and openly.

  2. Wow, thank you so much, Abby!

    My husband and I have been trying to conceive for 21 months. Being a name nerd and also being unable to have and name a child is hard. But your website, as well as a few others of my favorite baby name sites/blogs, has brought me so much peace and calm! Reading infertility forums caused me great stress, but reading this website calms me for whatever reason. I think because I have hope and look forward to someday using one of the names I read about. So thank you!

  3. Thank you for this Abby. My husband and I have been unable to conceive for over 4 years. As painful as that is month after month, I cannot imagine what it would feel like to finally conceive, begin imagining a real life and future with my child, begin considering real names for a real baby, and then only to lose it all. it would be devastating. Thank you for acknowledging all of us on this difficult, and as you said, terribly common, road.

  4. Thanks for this. I suffered my second miscarriage two weeks ago, and it helps so much to have the support and acknowledgement from the name-nerd community.

  5. Being an infertile name-nerd with a list a mile long is a very difficult road to travel, especially after having suffered a miscarriage within the past few weeks.

    One in four women will suffer a miscarriage, stillbirth, or infant loss, and every one of those women deserves the chance to celebrate and remember the babies they lost. Thank you for taking the time out to recognize those who are suffering, and for recognizing how common it really is.

  6. Thank you, Abby. I haven’t commented much here since I lost my first pregnancy at 11 weeks last week – I’ve since lost two more – but I still read often and appreciated so much this post last night.

  7. Thank you for this post… I had an ectopic in 2008, we named our baby Glory, as we will only him/her in glory.