T is for Taryn

T is for TarynT is for Taryn


Taryn Rose… a pure, late summer rose-bud, with a destiny that reaches out with love to enrich the lives of others. This is my wonderful first daughter, born on a late-July afternoon, a beautiful baby, by some also named “Honna,” the Haida word for pretty. While we named her Taryn, after the name of a favorite cousin, and Rose, the lovely name of her aunt and great-aunt, simply because those names just seemed to totally suit our baby, later I learned more about the meaning of her names, and discovered how suited they truly are to our Taryn Rose.


The name Taryn is said to be a combination of two more traditional names. The first root name is Tara (originally Temair in gaeilge), which is the hill on which the ancient pre-Celtic Irish high kings resided, and on which is located the Irish “stone of destiny” by which rightful kings were recognized, and on which those kings were crowned. It has also been suggested that the name Tara may derive from the same roots as Theresa, which means “late summer,” which was indeed the season of Taryn Rose’s birth. The second root name of Taryn is thought to be “Karen” which is derived from “Katerina,” and which carries the beautiful meaning “pure, clear, pure of heart.” The name Rose is taken from the name of one of the most well-known and beloved of flowers. Its beautiful scent inspired the bard to write of it, “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet,” and its many beautiful colors have come to represent special seasons and events of life, and have been used for untold centuries to express one’s feelings for others. Red roses of course represent love; white innocence; burgundy unconscious beauty; yellow friendship; coral desire; light pink joy; dark pink thankfulness; peach sincerity and modesty; blue mystery; lavender enchantment; green faithfulness; and orange fascination. Even the leaves of roses have come to symbolize hope and optimism. Roses come in many varieties, with simple to very complex petals, and they grow on bushes, trees, and trailing vines. While it is true that “every rose hides its thorn,” in reality it is the thorns that drink in the water that allows the rose to be so fresh and beautiful. Removing the thorns shortens the life of the flower. The thorn is also a protection for the rose, and it also reminds us that true beauty only comes with sacrifice, and that love involves risk.


While some would doubt that the meaning of a name has much effect on, to relationship to, the person who bears it, many others would argue that a name is very important. In many cultures, throughout recorded history, the naming of a child was an extremely important event, with important rites associated with it. In some cultures, an individual would receive new names at various key points in life. Studies have even shown that names result in some rather bizarre behaviors, such as teachers unwittingly giving better grades to students with popular names! As I look back through Taryn Rose’s life, I am amazed at how perfectly the meanings of her name have suited her.


Even at birth, Taryn Rose bore the beauty of the rose, in her facial features, in her delicate structure, and even in her character. Of course, as a first child, a first grand-child, and a namesake, she had much love poured out upon her. And she responded with her own naturally loving nature, which was entwined with the innocent trusting of a beloved child. Yet even while young, this simple child began to show a complexity lying not far below the surface. Seemingly unconscious of her beauty which so many people have commented on, Taryn has been friendly and modest. A true oldest child, she has been faithful and loyal to her younger siblings, and in other relationships. She has always been sincere and hard-working in all the responsibilities life has brought her way. Although often serious and sober about life, joy is never far away, and often splashes forth, enveloping those around her with its shared happiness. In her complexity, Taryn has drawn others into strong, enduring relationships with her, attracted not only by her friendliness, but also often fascinated and enchanted by a sense of mystery, as well as being thankful for her caring and generous spirit. Like a rose, Taryn Rose also has her thorns, prickly sometimes, but they are an important aspect of her complex wholeness. And as the rose with its thorns reminds us that true beauty comes only with sacrifice, so Taryn – she of the pure heart — has many times freely taken the risk of sacrificing her own desires and convenience, in caring for others, first her siblings and other family members, then friends, and finally her husband and child. Even in dark times, she has faced life with hope and optimism, and inspired that hope in others. And so to her natural physical beauty has been added true inner beauty, as she has become “Tara,” a pillar of strength and dignity, on which the destiny of others can take root and grow to greatness.


This is my daughter, Taryn Rose.


Norma Hill


Date: May 18, 2007


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