Baby shower or blessingway / baby blessing

I’ve just had the most beautiful baby blessing and while it’s still fresh in my mind I wanted to chat to you about the difference between a baby shower and a blessingway (or baby blessing) and why you would choose one over the other. (Scroll to the bottom of this post to watch the video.)

 

baby shower or blessingway

baby shower or blessingway

I had two baby showers when I was pregnant with Eamon I had two because lived a long way from my family and it made sense to have one with my family and friends and the other with his family and my local friends.

 

Both involved playing games, eating yummy food and I was given lots of beautiful gifts. I loved both. They were fun and light-hearted and because it was my first baby, many of the gifts were things that I needed.

 

When I was pregnant with Rory my yoga friends offered to throw me a blessingway or a baby blessing. It’s definitely a bit of a trend right now, but the biggest difference I think between this sort of blessing and a shower is that the focus is offering the emotional and physical support that the new mother needs rather than it just being a party to celebrate the baby.

 

What does a blessingway or baby blessing involve?

Basically it can involve whatever you want it to. I don’t really believe there are any ‘rules’ for what should be included.

A Women’s Circle (often the main part of the blessing)

Meditation

Prayer

Massage or pampering for the new Mother

Reiki treatment

Writing birthing/ motherhood affirmations down on cards for the new mother.

Henna / painting her belly

Sharing tea and yummy food

Cooking for the new Mum.

Giving of a little token or gift

Organising a food roster of who will come and drop food and when.

If the mother has other children, organising a babysitting roster for once the baby.

 

When I was pregnant with Rory the circle (which is the main part of the blessing) was mostly focused on strength for birth. I hadn’t had the greatest experience with Eamon and I was feeling very apprehensive about having to do it again. The circle opened with a meditation and all the women who I had invited were asked to send me their love and support and then each went round offering me words of strength, advice and their encouragement.

 

They also gave me a little token to represent what they were offering me, so some were little crystals, flowers and words of support written down. This became a little collection of things that I took with me to hospital to remind my of their support.

 

During the circle we wrapped cord around our wrists so by the end we were all connected. This part represents the umbilical cord, my connection to my baby, but also to all these women in my life who were there to support me and all the women who’ve done this before me.

 

Afterwards everyone had brought food and we just chatted and shared stories about birth, etc. Once I went into labour everyone who came to the blessingway was told and they cut the cord and lit their candle to send me their love and support.

 

This time, the circle was very similar, although given the last couple of years that we’ve had it was very focused on the fact that this baby is being born after 3 losses and so I’m taking into birth a certain level of anxiety already.

 

Understandably it was very emotional, especially as all the women who were there have really been there for me throughout the three losses, some who have experienced losses of their own.

 

After the circle another friend of mine (Caitlin from Motherdownunder) had organised ingredients and recipe cards to fill my freezer. Some got in to help cook meals, while others had tea and cake and wrangled babies, because we had about twice as many kids to adults present.

 

Baby shower or blessingway (baby blessing) Which one is right for you?

While I had lots of fun at my showers, for me personally I have found that I have found that the blessing is what I need going into birth. It helps me feel connected and supported and so loved at this incredibly vulnerable time.  I guess it creates a safe space for us to go a little deeper and share a little more openly, whereas a shower often keeps the conversation surface level, bright and bubbly.

 

I personally would choose a blessing ceremony over a shower, although there is no reason why you couldn’t combine both where you have the ceremony and the celebration together.

 

I guess the biggest barrier to a blessingway or baby blessing might be finding someone who is confident to run it. If you search your local area you might be able to hire someone to run it for you or there are lots of resources on the internet that can help guide you to know what to include.

 

Have you had a baby shower or blessingway / baby blessing? Which did you prefer?

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