I had a baby shower and mother blessing on the same day. Bad idea!! I did okay, but a couple of my guests pooped out on me and didn't come to the MB, even though that was more importnant to me.
I got LOTS of stuff at my shower. OVer 20 people came. BUT, even though we had nearly an hour to just chit chat, I feel people got left out and, though I tried to talk to everyone, I wsn't able to TALK to anyone for any length of time. It felt empty, and I felt inadequate in my thank yous to people who had spent alot of money on my gifts.
I was anticipating more communication at my Blessing, but I didn't know just how BLESSED I would really be!
There was a snag in communication, so some ppl didn't get invites until Fri., so I understand not wanting to come on short notice. Others pooped out, like I mentioned earlier.
So, in the end, 4 people came: my doula and her mother (both friends that I have grown close too), my mother, and me. It was such a spiritual event; I was SOOO surprised.
First, we opened with a candle lighting: I lit a big pillar candle in the middle of a plate surrounded by smaller candles. Then, each woman lit one candle for their mother and one candle for each child. This was very special, because my mom lit candles for her miscarriage (Leslie) and my little brother who was born at 6 months gestation, and died 11 days later (Tommy). I had forgotten how involved I was in Tommy's life, since I was there less than an hour after he was born, and for several days after.
These candles would be very significant later. After all the candles were lit, we took beautiful glowing pictures. We forgot about them. Later, they melted all together into one big glowing clump. Just before we blew them out, I observed that we are like the candles: As mothers and daughters, our lives flowin and out of others lives in a messy and intrusive fashion, but the result is a powerful light that is even more noticeable than each individual light.
After the candle lighting, everyone came around my belly, and we took pictures with each person's hand on top of my belly. This reinfoced that we are all connected: we all came from the womb, and (in this case) we all have carried children in our womb.
We moved on to the Bead giving/ Belly painting. This was my favorite part. Each person came forward with words/ poems and songs for me and the baby. They told me the significance of the bead, and then got to paint my belly. I was very impressed by the thought behind each bead. Each bead was specially chosen for ME. My friend gave me a pendant that she had once given to her grandmother. It had a mother and child on it. She had given these pendants to each of the women in her life for Mother's Day one year. When her grandmother passed away, the pendant was given back to her. I was so honored to receive a momento of such value and significance to her. I felt very honored and cherished.
We painted rocks for me to focus on during birth: the best being a rock that said "focus" but it was blurry!!!
To close, we stood in a circle and tied ourselves together with a beautiful yarn I had picked out (ticker tape yarn in blue and pink-- I found it at Michael's). We discussed the significance of our "umbilical cord" tying us to each other (very cool that we had only mothers and daughters there), and how, even though we would cut the yarn and be on our separate ways, we were still connected by the yarn tied around our wrists. This yarn is to stay on our wrists until the baby is born. This way, each woman will think and pray about my baby and me every time they look at their wrist.
We closed in prayer.
This was such a spiritual ceremony. I may not feel more prepared for my birth; but I am confident in the fact that others love and care about me; and that others have gone before me, and this is indeed a blessed and holy occasion.