Terms of Endearment

Reading one of my favs, Terms of Endearment, got me to thinking: Why don’t we call people by their proper names?

By Patti Parish-Kaminski, Publisher

When I was pregnant with my precious babies, I thought long and hard about who and what they would be as adults. Perhaps I was jumping the gun a bit, but I’m a planner – always have been. And much of that, in my mind, was reflective on the proper name that they were given at birth, and I felt that was my responsibility. I know, I think too much, but it was a monumental dilemma, a task of the utmost importance and one that I pondered over for months, which is unusual, as I tend to be rather decisive. Factor in that I married Mr. Kaminski, and given my penchant for the written word and alliteration, well, whatever I chose had to compliment the complicated multi-syllable surname.

So, I set about this task determined that my babies would have handles that would give them options in life. Now you might think that this would be a joint task for Mr. Kaminski and I, since I didn’t get myself in this particular state solo. But the naming the baby gig I felt a particular kind of way about. The situation boiled down to something like this: I got fat, I got cranky, I got swollen, I got mean, I carried the baby, I grew the baby, I gave birth to the baby, I named the baby. So, I tackled this life-altering enterprise all while not taking a single medication for my allergies or aches and pains – not even Tylenol – and not drinking Diet Coke or wine for nine months, hence the cranky and mean.

After much thought and multiple mood swings, here’s where I landed. Whether baby girl wanted to be a professor, a psychologist or a painter, she could affect change for the better helping our world as Kassidi McKayla Kaminski. Baby boy could be a cowboy, a corporate mogul or a congressman running the free world keeping us all between the lines as Kolton Wade Kaminski. Yes, Wade was a nod to Mr. Kaminski as that is his middle name. After all, he did have some input in the situation.

After all of the pondering, vexatious months spent focused on making certain the next generation had the absolute perfect names, from the moment these precious children of God breathed their first breath, it was all for naught. Mr. Kaminski took one look at his beautiful daughter, called her “Boo,” and it was done. Baby Boy came along, “Boo” immediately named him “Bubbie,” and that was done. When “Bubbie,” could speak, Kassidi became “Sassy,” and that was done. Of course, her Daddy still calls her “Boo.” And I worked so hard.

It’s a southern thing, I believe, these nicknames or terms of endearment we use for one another. Mr. Kaminski doesn’t call me Patti – never has. It’s “Honey.” Not that I’m overtly sweet, but I can be a bit sticky to deal with at times, so that works. Mawmaw called me “Sugar.” She thought I was super sweet. And I tend to use terms of endearment so often for friends and associates; it’s just what we do. I tend to use “Baby” and “Sis” when talking to my sweet friends. I have one friend who always refers to me as “Darlin’.” I adore him, and I always know it’s him when he calls, and I hear “Hello Darlin’.” It puts a smile on my face.

Some people do call me Patti, or Ms. Patti. Some call me PPK. As for me, I don’t mind being called a sweet term of endearment at all. I know some women do. I think it’s just fine if you think enough of me to want to call me something sweet – even if I’m not being particularly sweet that day. See you sweet thangs next week – on the porch!

Patti Parish-Kaminski

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