Friday, December 3, 2010

Ask the readers: Blessingways!

True confession: doula and birth junkie that I am, I have never planned or even attended a blessingway. (I'm pretty sure that a VW van full of long-skirted, patchouli-scented wimmin just screeched up outside my house and they're about to start pounding on my door asking for my hippie card back.)

But with one of my former MPH classmates expecting a baby in February (I am starting to lose count of the people I know in person or online who are due February-April 2011), I started talking with several of our friends about doing something for her before the baby comes. I think I can be quoted as saying something like, "Oh, oh, WAIT! Instead of a shower, can we do a blessingway? PLEASE??" (And this being public health people, one of them already had experience with blessingways through her practicum placement at a perinatal substance abuse treatment program. The women there, who all lived together, would do a blessingway for each participant as she neared her due date.) So we're in the midst of planning and I'm getting very excited!

One thing I think would be really nice is the tradition of each placing a special bead on a string for the mother, along with a wish/prayer/affirmation/etc. for her. I especially like this because so many of our classmates have scattered to other states or continents post-graduation, and this is a way they can still participate by sending their beads from a distance.

This being an MCH event, there will also of course be lots and lots of delicious food!

But what else should we do? Have you attended or had a blessingway planned for you? What have been your favorite activities/traditions?


Anonymous said...

I did a blessingway for a friend not too long ago, and adapted it for our beliefs, which is easy with a blessingway. We read prayers and verses from a simchat bat (Jewish baby girl celebration) as we each lit a candle around the room to set the tone. Everyone brought a bead and she strung them in the order they were given - and wore them when she went into labour. We washed eachother's feet, with me giving instructions on the aromatherapy effects of different tinctures people could use, and lotions for foot massage that I demonstrated too. I had to ensure people were on board for this before the day, but they all loved it. We sang happy birthday and gave her a wreath of flowers for her head, which is an Israeli tradition, and each said a hope or blessing on a birthday candle and she lit them and blew them out. We had a lovely time! Hope you will too.x

Selina and Christine said...

I did a blessingway. Interestingly I also work on an MPH programme (in the UK) and I'm a doula!
See my website here-
I used this book which was really helpful-


Anonymous said...

My friend had a blessingway (although it wasn't called that) component within her baby shower. We each made a scrapbook page with a blessing to the new little one. The hostesses indicated on the invitation that this would be occurring so we would be prepared.