'She’s just a kid trying to make her way in this crazy world!'
The Backstreet Boys singer and his wife shared a photo of their daughters embarking on their first day of school on Wednesday.
The girls—5-year-old Lyric and 9-year-old, born Ava—posed together holding two pink balloons.
“After two and half years years of homeschool, these two beauties are back to school! Lyric is starting kindergarten and Elliott (Ava) is in fourth grade! I can’t believe it! I’m so proud of these girls. As much as I am going to miss them, I’m excited to watch them spread their wings and fly!” the caption read.
Ava was referred to as Elliott in the caption, a name which was also printed on her balloon, prompting the parents to issue a response to an influx of questions from fans.
"For those asking … not that it's anyone's business but Elliott's name change is not a gender thing," Rochelle wrote in a follow-up post shared on her Instagram Story, per People, along with individual photos of each girl decked out in a colorful and fun first day outfit.
She explained that her daughter has attempted to change her name a few times before eventually landing on Elliott.
"She wanted something unique that no one else had (There are so many Ava's). I didn't really see the harm in respecting her desire to be unique,” the mom noted, adding that she always thought it was a “little odd” that parents were responsible for choosing a child's name at birth and expecting them to identify with it forever.
"Anyway … so that's how Ava became Elliott. I knew once I put it out there people would have opinions, but be kind," she continued, reminding everyone online that “she’s just a kid trying to make her way in this crazy world!”
“I just want her to know she can always be whoever she wants to be🖤" the supportive parent concluded.