My mother thought when she chose the name Lisa for me it was a different, uncommon name that sounded pretty to her. Apparently so did many of the other mothers the year I was born, as I was rarely the only Lisa in my class growing up. We were all known as Lisa with whatever initial our last names started with.
My husband didn’t know his true given name until he was 10, when he asked what his “real” name was. He had always been called Sender. His given name was Alexander, which had been shortened to the nick name of Sender, not an uncommon name when someone of Jewish heritage came from Poland. (If someone were from Hungary, the name used would have been Sandor.) When I began exploring his family tree I found the name Alexander was that of both his great, great grandfather, and his great grandfather. They had also been known as Sender.
Jewish tradition (among Ashkenazic Jews) is to name after those who are deceased. I never really thought much about it until my mother in law died and that same year 3 of her granddaughters gave birth to girls. They were all named Esther for her. A few years later her grandson had a girl and also named her Esther.I then realized how nice a tradition it is, reminding us of the person, remembering that person.
According to the Talmud, the naming of a Jewish child is a most profound moment. For at the beginning of life we give a name, and at the end of life a “good name” is all we take with us.
My mother in law Esther