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Has anyone had a blessingway before?

540 Views 4 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  kayakjen
I want to have a blessingway with this baby, but I'm just learning about them. I've never known of anyone having one, so I don't know who to ask about them. I've done a little reading up online and found some ideas I really like, but I don't know how to put them together. Anyone done this before or been to one?
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I've never had one, but I would like to learn more about it also
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I had a "mother blessing" when I was pregnant with our first baby. I didn't want to call it a blessingway out of respect to the Dinae people where that name is taken from. For them, it is a truly sacred and very ritualized ceremony performed to mark a transition in a person's life, i.e. moving into motherhood, becoming a senior, etc. There a few threads here and there around MDC talking more about the Dinae people and blessingways if you want to know more.

My mother blessing was hosted by my very good friend, but she asked me about what I wanted to include and we basically worked out all the details together. Our baby was due in the late spring, and flowers really resonated with me during that time period, so we asked each person to bring a flower to add to a bouquet. I also wanted to make a bead necklace to have during laboring and birthing, and as I though about it more, I wanted our baby to have one to keep as a remembrance and one for myself to keep as well. The invitation, which included some art work from Sheila Kitzinger's book Redsicovering Birth, should have been more specific about the beads being the same exact type to make two strands -- one for baby and one for mama -- because people brought two beads (and many brought more than two!) but they were all different. I had quite a few women come and the strand ended up being quite long and falling apart as I was stringing that day, so to this day, all the beads are sitting in a beautiful bowl in our master bathroom unstrung. I still want to make a remembrance of some sort for our son, but I just don't know how to divide the beads up.

On the invitation, people were also asked to bring something to share, a poem, a song, a few lines, a piece of artwork, or just about anything, that I could add to a memory book of my pregnancy and birth. Then on the day of the mother blessing, my friend had cut circles (they happened to be approximately 10cm in diameter) in a rainbow of colors (colors also resonated with me during my pregnancy) for the women to write wishes and thoughts and anything else they wanted to share.

The more "formal" part of the afternoon was simply sitting around in a circle, then my friend lit a candle I had selected as my laboring candle, and it was passed around to each person when it was their turn to share. My friend started and introduced herself as a continuation of her maternal lineage, i.e. "I am Christine, daughter of Kathy, sister of Melanie, granddaughter of I___ and G____" and so on for whoever she wanted to mention. Then each person shared how they knew me and one thing they admired about me or had learned through knowing me. Then they shared their poem or song or art or wish and told me about their beads and why they chose them and then handed them to me to string.

Since it was our first baby and I wanted to honor my partner's movement into fatherhood and his participation in the pregnancy, too, I asked him if he wanted to be present at the mother blessing. He did, and he ended up recording most of it on video as well. His participation was barely perceptible in the sea of estrogen and mama vibes, but I know it meant a lot to him to be there and it meant a lot to me to have him there as well.

There were a ton of other ideas that I might have included but the ones I chose were really the ones that struck a chord with me and resonated somehow, so I would recommend you take ideas that you find that you really like and plan your blessing around that.

There is also a book that was written recently about the new tradition of blessingways and includes ideas of how to plan your own. I most recently saw it on the site in the store. I believe the title is simply Blessingway.

I am hoping to have another mother blessing before the birth of this baby and will probably do some different things this time. I will definitely have another laboring candle, a different one, as that was a constant reminder for me during my labor of all the amazing women who were with me in spirit during that time and whom I continue to call friends.

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I combined some of the elements of a blessingway into my sister's and my baby shower.

For my sister's I had a collection of poems that centered around Mothers and every so often throughout the shower I would ask a woman to read one of the poems - which I actually made into a keepsake book for my sister

I also made her a bead necklace (which she never used) but I had her do it for me and I used it in labor - which I did drug-free - very proud of that...all I did was go to a crafts store and bought yellow and white beads - and hemp string (natural) - and at the shower each woman was given one white bead and asked to make a wish for mom - and one yellow wish - and they made a wish for the baby - and then strung it on the string...the wishes were also written down in a keepsake journal by each woman

I have mine and read it every once in awhile
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TurboClaudia- What a beautiful description of your Mother Blessing, I love the idea of talking about lineage and having your laboring candle and partner there. Thanks for taking the time to write so much, I enjoyed reading it!

Septembermommie- A keepsake book of poems is such a great idea...

I'm hosting a Blessingway for a friend next weekend, we are doing similar things that TurboClaudia mentioned and we are also painting the belly cast that my friend made with her husband last week. I found a lot of helpful information by googleing 'birthingway' and 'blessingway'.

I didn't have this ceremony with my other 2 kids, but I am planning on it this time!!
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