Most people spell Meghan one of two ways. Either Megan (the most common way) OR they spell it the same way some other Meghan they knew spelled it. I have, I think, one of the more uncommon ways of spelling it. I have seen/heard it in many ways over my 30 years of being one. Some examples I've collected over the years:
- Megan (the most common way, I call it the "basic model")
- Meghan (I have yet to meet another that spells it like this, but unlike when I was a kid, I can find this spelling on things at Disneyland, so it must be getting more common)
- Meagan (the only way I'll allow my name misspelled, not sure why, I like it I guess; often pronounced "Mee-gan")
- Megann (more like "Meg-ANN" than "Meg-ghen" but close)
- Negan (the little sister of a Persian friend I had in HS, I liked it)
I love that last one. It's so excessive it's hilarious to me. I saw it in a news article. It was the daughter of a woman whose name now escapes me, but I do remember thinking that the mother's spelling of her name was excessive so I thought it was like a family tradition. I mean it's a combination of EVERY alternative spelling I've ever seen. I've actually seen more in baby name lists/books but these are the ones I've seen actually attached to living human beings, and not just some name generator.
The other thing I have learned is when 1 Meghan meets or hears of someone knowing another Meghan, the first thing we ask is: Oh, how do you (does she) spell it? I don't know if other semi-common names but mine seems to be kinda unusual that way. I've also been asked by parents of other Meghans, so I know it's not just me that does this.
These days everyone seems to know another Meghan, I hear it all the time, "oh my sister's husband's cousin's girlfriend is named Meagan." Where were these people when I was a kid? It's like, it's unusual enough that I've only met 5-6 in my life, but everyone has heard the name and knows 1 or 2 people attached to it.
I actually know where they were, most of them weren't born yet. See, when I was born, in the dark ages before parents knew what the baby was before they came, my parents had made a list of potential names for a girl and a list for a boy. My parents were very big on not naming the baby before it was born because they felt that you would know what the name was when you saw them. Y'know, "she doesn't LOOK like a 'Mary,' I think we need to go with 'Betsy.'" Any way, my parents really liked the name because it was unusual enough that I wasn't going to have an initial stuck to the end of my name my entire life. C'mon, you know what I mean, everyone my age had like 4 Jennifers in their kindergarten class and they were all distinguished by their last initial. You should see my smart phone when I'm trying to message a Sarah... I've collected quite a few in my life. :) My poor mother is always asking me to give her a last name when I talk about them too for the same purpose.
Back to naming me: So, Megan was a front runner before I was born. My parents picked this particular spelling because they were lead to believe it was the Gaelic spelling of my name. I'm not sure how true that is because I've never seen any evidence as such, but the reason they wanted that was because my last name was so heavily Polish, that it only seemed fair to have a very Scots and/or English spelling to suit the other side of my heritage. I'd like to point out, the obvious, by stating that I was the first born. No other reason would my parents put so much analysis into a name, it's not like them. So when I was born, I became Meghan. Common enough that teachers could read it and know how to say it (funny, because I was born before all these REALLY crazy spellings were trendy), and I wouldn't get teased for such an odd name.
Just less than 18 months later, The Thorn Birds appeared on American TV. The main character? Meggie, short for Margaret, but if you didn't read the book, apparently the assumption was it was for Megan. This is why MOST of the Meghans I knew growing up were actually Megans and several years younger than me. I knew of 1 senior with my name when I was a freshman in HS and there was 1 other Meagan in my grade. I think this is where my acceptance of spelling my name like the other came from. We both ran in totally different circles and the only time we had a class together was in Economics 2nd semester of senior year. The last possible time to get a class together. I think she said her mother got mad at Thorn Birds too.
Why the reason for this whole post? I'm finally getting there. Once upon a time there was a wonderfully creative show on the BBC America (and the regular BBC somewhere too) called Being Human. If you follow my book/movie blog, you'll know how much I love this show and the original vampire on there, now starring as the hot dwarf in the Hobbit films. Then the evil Syfy channel remade and Americanized it and I watched, I think, 2 episodes before I almost threw something through my screen. It was an abomination. 2 years later I've forgotten all about it and I'm catching up on all my DVR'd episodes of The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (I love that man!) and after Billy Connolly (another beloved Scot) he has on Meaghan Rath, one of the stars of the US Being Human. I say to myself, "I'll watch the other Meghan just to be supportive..." (Yes, I do that. I watch Body of Proof because the main character is named Megan too. I do like the show as well, but it's what sold me at first).
So Craig says to Meaghan once she sits down...
C: You know, my wife's name is Megan. [HOW did I miss that?] I don't know why I bring it up, but apparently I did. [It's the magic of the name Craig, just let it happen.]
M: How does she spell it? [I'm laughing to myself now.]
C: She spells it differently to you. She spells it M-E-G-A-N. You do the M-E-A-G-H-X-3-A...
M: (laughs) The most letters possible [Nope! See above!] And I guess your wife, the least. The laziest way, I say.
Audience ahhs, Craig raises an eyebrow and moves on.
I jump up, laughing hard, made a fan for life, and run to the internet to write a mile-long-blog post about it. I'm such a freaking dork. Video on YouTube at 1:24.