“Growing up I was always very self conscious about my name,” says Ocean, a 34-year-old from Indiana.
I hated new settings where I would be introduced or my name would be called out loud. The first day of school was always nerve wracking for me. Kids as we all know can be terribly cruel.
As I got older (and had the name for a while :) it got better and in fact now I happen to like my name. It’s a great ice breaker. Every once in a while I will ask the kids if my name embarrasses them and they tell me they think it’s cool.
How did Ocean come by her unique name?
My mother says that she had an aunt that she was close to named Arlene. Arlene lived in a nursing home. One of her nurses was named Oshie. She asked my mom to name me after her nurse. So my name is Ocean Jolene. Jolene is after Aunt Arlene and then my father’s parents Joe and Ruth Arlene.
As far as her own children go, Ocean chose “trendy but not so uncommon names”:
- Ciara Nikelle, who goes by the nickname ‘C’ — though sometimes “people freak out and think that we named her Sea,”
- Mariah Jonalyn, whose middle name is a “mixture of my in-laws, John and Linda,” and
- Ethan Troy, “Ethan because I had a dream that I was to name him that, and Troy because that is his Daddy’s name.”
Ocean’s surname is Sharp, and one of the funniest things she told me was that she periodically receives mail addressed to Ocean Shark.
Thanks so much, Ocean!