I was given a Hebrew name, but to my knowledge, my parents never did an official announcement at Shul. I also didn't have a middle name, for whatever reason used to make me frustrated. Everyone I know has multiple names. I just had a first name, last name and no middle initial.
I took the opportunity four years ago to pick my middle name. I had a really hard time with the decision. I thought of using my grandmother's name, since she was such a strong woman.
I was drawn to the name Esther.
It was through Esther, in the story of Purim, that the Jewish people were saved, from Haman's evil decree. Well, it was through G-d, through Esther. Esther was married to a non-Jew, King Achashverosh. In the story of Purim, G-d is hidden, in that there aren't any obvious miracles like a sea splitting, more a series of coincidences where everything just happens to work out.
I am married to a non Jew, and I have found that G-d has always been around, in this same kind of hidden way. Whenever I felt really lost, a path would magically appear and show me the way. G-d's Hand.
I was drawn to the name Esther, but I still wasn't sure whether it should be my new middle name. This was a big decision. I had this constant thought about the words, G-d is Hidden. I didn't know why, but then it came together just before the naming ceremony. Translate G-d is Hidden into Hebrew, and that will be my Hebrew middle name.
So I asked one of the Rabbi-guides on our trip. How would one translate G-d is hidden into Hebrew? He told me, "Nistar". Hmm. That didn't sound very appealing. So I asked, how would one make a name out of it, his answer, "Oh, Esther of course". Huh. How about that? (No, I was not aware of that until this very moment, in case that wasn't obvious).
(Fascinating that Hebrew naming is actually considered presently one of the last vestiges of prophecy.)
On the top of Masada, almost 4 years ago, I was officially given my full Hebrew name, Chana Esther. Chana (or rather Hannah) chosen for me at birth, and Esther, chosen by me (or would that be strongly hinted to me), in Israel.
Here is one of the latest participants in the JWRP trip speaking about getting her Hebrew name (recorded my Lori Palatnik. See other videos from the JWRP trips here). I find these stories so incredibly powerful.
What is your Hebrew name? Did your parents pick it or did you get to pick in adulthood?