On this Easter weekend, I recall a sermon I heard on birth stories and their importance in our lives.
As I watch the Ten Commandments, it’s hard not to recognize how the birth story of Moses would affect him his entire life. Born of Hebrew slaves and raised Egyptian, he would lead the Hebrews out of bondage. The birth story of Jesus also guided and preordained him for his coming life. The sermon asked us to think of our own birth stories, and that leads to how I got my name.
My mother carried me for almost ten months. She had to be induced. Had I been born a boy, my parents planned to name me Monty. In which case, my name would have been Monty Hall. The female name they picked out was Angela, but on the way to the hospital, they passed a movie theater. A large picture of Rhonda Fleming and her flaming red hair adorned the theater.
My mom turned to my dad and said, “What do you think of, Rhonda?”
Dad nodded. “I like it.”
Red hair is pretty big in my family. Lots of red heads. The irony is, I’m the only one of my siblings that doesn’t have red hair.
But what does my birth story say about me? It says, that I was a wanted child. It says that I belong to this group, even if I don’t have red hair. As a writer, we have to ask ourselves about our characters. Did their parents want them? Were Mom and Dad happy or disappointed?
What’s your birth story?
Rhonda Fleming “Queen of Technicolor”