Have you heard of a Blessingway?
I have read about them for many years, missed one in Spain because of the snow, yet never organised or attended one.
Last weekend I was blessed to be invited to my first Blessingway or Mother Blessing of one of my clients.
A Mother Blessing has been described as an alternative to the usual baby shower – which is focused on the baby. Whereas a Mother Blessing is a mother focused celebration of the woman as she passes into motherhood. Celebrating the rite of passage that accompanies birth.
Wow! That sounds powerful. And it was.
Recipe for a Simple Mother Blessing
- Take one pregnant mama nearly ready to meet her baby.
- Choose someone willing to organise and invite all the guests.
- Choose a date and time.
- Tell everyone to bring some yummy food and drink to share.
- Bake a special chocolatey cake for the mama celebration
You will need
- A few metres of red ribbon.
- A few metres of golden twine.
Instructions for the guests:
Bring a beautiful bead to give to the mama
Bring a thought, poem or wish.
Bring your love.
- Decorate the space with whatever she loves – candles, flowers, earthy or colourful. Whatever is right for her.
- Gather together and enjoy the food – chat and relax and do what women do.
- Serve up the cake and invite mama to cut the cake.
- Create a circle of women and get ready with the tissues.
- Pass the golden twine around the group and each share your thought, wish or hope for the mama to be.
- Pass the red ribbon round the circle. Each member of the circle knots the ribbon and cuts it to retain it on their wrist. Wear this until the birth as a reminder that we’re all supporting that mama, every day. During the labour she will be reminded of the love and support from her female circle.
- The beads can be strung together to wear as a necklace in labour, or a string of beads to carry and remind her of your love and support.
Make sure you have lots of tissues handy. The energy and power in that room is incredible.
It was powerful because you could really feel the love for this mama filling the room. She was the centre of everyone’s attention for that day, and hopefully felt all that love and strength that was being passed across to her. I shall be her midwife for the birth and I definitely felt that this was how birth should be prepared for. Women coming together, showing strength and belief in the process of birth and motherhood.
MamaCafe is all about bringing women together to support each other. The Mother Blessing is one helluva way to do that. It doesn’t have to be complicated, although there are LOTS of ideas on the net for beautiful ways to celebrate the mama.
This book is a great resource.
It doesn’t have to be complicated. We’re pretty good at celebrations.
Share some food together and bring a bead for a birthing necklace. How’s that for starters?
PS. I’ve chosen to use the term Mother Blessing through the post because have recently discovered that this would be preferred by the Navajo tribe from where it originates.
“1. In 2004, Native feminists wrote us to request that the term ‘Blessingway’ no longer be used to describe non-Navajo prenatal ceremonies such as the one described in this article. They explained that the term ‘Blessingway’ refers to a sacred spiritual ceremony performed by the Navajo people to celebrate rites of passage that occur throughout the entire life cycle, and not only the passage into motherhood. They suggested the term ‘Mother Blessing’ was a more appropriate term for a ceremony that was influenced, and respectful, of this tradition, but not practiced in accordance with the Navajo faith and culture. We completely agree.
Out of repect for the great history and importance of the Blessingway to Navajo people, many doulas, midwives and mothers now use the term ‘Mother Blessing’ to denote the celebration outlined in this article — a practice we have also adopted.”