Wednesday, February 18, 2009

How Olivia Got Her Name

First, let me preface this story by stating that I am not expressing any particular belief one way or the other. I am simply telling a story how it happened. You can believe what you want and think what you want.

When Emily was getting ready to turn 3 years old, which happens to be a week before Christmas, she decided she wanted a puppy. She was a very easygoing, laid back baby and we wanted something small that she could hold and play with and wouldn't knock her down.

Look at that face. How could you not get her a puppy?

I found a breeder who had two dachshund puppies, a male and a female, so we loaded the three kids into the suv and head out. When we got there, we let her pick the one she wanted and she chose the little female.

On the way home, she was sitting in her carseat between the two other kids. Heath was 12 and Les was 9 at the time. Emily had the puppy in her lap, petting her with those pudgy little baby fingers. Emily has always had a very calming way with animals and the puppy was completely chilled in her lap, not being playful or rambunctious at all.

I asked her, "Hey Emmie, what are you going to name your new puppy?"

Very quickly, enunciating precisely and definitively, she stated, "I am naming her Olivia."

John and I looked at each other with furrowed brows and I said, "Well, that's a very unique name. Where did you hear it?"

"It was my mommy's name," she said.

"What are you talking about? I am your mommy."

"Not you, silly," yes, she called me silly. "My mommy before you."

She said it in a way that she felt like I should have known it. Like it was common knowledge just as normal as her brother and sister sitting right next to her.

"What happened to her?" I asked.

"She died."

And that was the end of it. Heath and Les were, of course, giving it the do do do do, do do do do, but she never said anything else about it.

Please don't think that I believe my dog is the reincarnated mother of my child's former life. That is ridiculous.

Olivia is still with us. She is 14 years old. She can't see or hear very well anymore, but she is still healthy and active.

If you ask Emily about any of this now, she doesn't remember one bit of it, but I will never forget it.


  1. The mind of a child. They are closer to God than any of us, in my humble opinion.

    When Isabel was newly-four, she prayed and prayed for me to have a baby. I was pregnant (a surprise) two weeks later.

    Of course, she did pray for a girl, and we got Gabe...

    I think it's a great story; Olivia and Emily are adorable :)

  2. How mysterious! I love that story. And Olivia is pretty darn cute (as is Emily).

  3. I'm having so major goosebumps at this moment. What a cool story!

  4. They say that children are closest to the other side..from just coming from there. You know how newborns smile when they sleep. My neighbor told me that was them playing with the angels. They they had just come from heaven and still were in touch so easily with that side.
    Who knows. We won't get all the answers until we die. My grandfather used to say dying will be life's greates adventure!

  5. Wow what a story. I wonder she remembered at that time to say that. Or if maybe whe had just had a dream about it.

  6. I just love the things that come out of kids' mouths.

  7. That is definitely an interesting story. Good for you all for sticking with the name.

  8. great mom let everyone know what a freak I am. And to be honest I do remember this a little bit.

  9. do do do do, do do do do. My daughter sees dead people, really.


If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all. No need to point out my mistakes, I have family for that.