Posted by Nyssa Smith on Jan 31, 2010

Is Nyssa really your name?  Or is that short for something? I knew you were dying to ask!Nyssa Smith name logo

Yes. Nyssa is really my name!  No. It is not short for something else.  And no, I am not named after Nyssa from Doctor Who.

So then, how did I get my name?  And how is it pronounced?  Nyssa (pronounced like Lisa) is a name of Greek origin, meaning beginning.  My mom read it in a book when she was pregnant with me and liked it.  So that’s how I got the name.  We never knew the real meaning or the origin of the name until many years later when I was in high school.  When in high school, I had to do a leaf collection.  In the process of creating that leaf collection, I had to gather various leaves and do research about each leaf.  What tree was the leaf from and what was the scientific names of each.  To my amazement, Nyssa is the scientific name to a Black Gum tree!  Yes, a Black Gum tree!  How cool is that!?  Nyssa sylvatica is the scientific name to a Black Gum tree.  Not only was I excited to find that out, but so were my parents!

Nyssa sylvatica

Later, as an adult, with the explosion of the world wide web, I had another Nyssa search me out!  Not only does she have the name Nyssa, but she also has the last name Smith!  With such a unique name, she was curious what other Nyssa’s were out there.  So she googled her name (Nyssa Smith) and found me (Nyssa Smith)!  Since I was in real estate and had lots of info on the web, she easily found me!  It was really cool to get introduced to her.  She’s in California.  Or at least she was at the time.  She told me that our name is of Greek origin.  She actually told me that our name means “begining of the end.”  Now, I actually find that to be super intriquing!  I think that’s really cool!

My next encounter with the meaning of my name was from a couple of my friends.  They had taken a vacation and came back with a beautiful plaque for me!  I actually have this up on display on one of my shelves in my home office.  When my friends saw it, they immediately thought of me and they thought how perfectly the words fit me!  Here’s what the plaque says:

“Nyssa, a name of Greek origin meaning “beginning”; Convinced of the innate goodness of mankind; Is never parted from loved ones who are in her heart; Knowing a friend creates a new world within her; Believes in living every day completely; Brings joy to the lives of those around her; A person who can enjoy the innocent smile of a child; What a wonderful friend to have in time of need!”

So that’s me!  That’s my name!  That’s how I got it!  That’s what I know about it!  And what a nice compliment from my friends!!!  They think it perfectly fits me.  How about you?

P.S. I also know that it’s a name of a town in Oregon.  Nyssa, Oregon.  I’ve never been there…