" Pregnant and birthing mothers are elemental forces, in the same sense that gravity, thunderstorms, earthquakes and hurricanes are elemental forces. In order to understand the laws of their energy flow, you have to love and respect them for their magnificence at the same time that you study them with the accuracy of a true scientist." Ina May Gaskin, Spiritual Midwifery, 1977
A ceremony to honour the pregnant mother and assist her to prepare for childbirth. It brings women together in a circle of sisterhood around the woman as she readies herself to give birth. It gives close friends and family the opportunity to express their love, appreciation and support. And it gives the pregnant mother the opportunity to receive these blessings, and to honour the scale of the changes that are taking place in her life.
The ceremony is generally held in late pregnancy, so that the pregnant mama can carry the blessings with her into the experience of giving birth. A blessingway can also be held in early pregnancy, as a way of welcoming and celebrating the baby's spirit and the pregnancy journey which has just begun. Or at any other point at which a woman feels the need.
Beginnings and endings go hand in hand, so a blessingway ceremony can be a useful place for beginning to consciously release and grieve aspects of the old life, the pregnant or pre-pregnant self, even as we open ourself joyously to the new beginning, the new way of being which is ahead of us. A blessingway circle is a special place for heart-to-heart sharing between women, where fears and doubts can be aired, honoured and released into the light. Or it can be pure celebration, something like a baby-shower, only with the focus firmly on honouring and blessing the mother-to-be.
The Pregnant Mama Blessing may be offered as an alternative to, or combined with, a more ttraditional baby shower
A ceremony to welcome the new child into her or his circle of family and friends. Often (but not always) done within the first year of a child's life or around the time of the first birthday. Traditionally this kind of ceremony would include a formal naming-giving or announcing of the baby's names, possibly with a brief explanation about how/why these names were chosen.
Other elements that the family may wish to consider including are:
Find support for the passage to motherhood
Pregnancy is one of the most intensely demanding physical, emotional and spiritual transitions in a woman's life.
Becoming a mother is always life-changing. The changes to your sense of self can be positive and empowering, but that isn't always how it feels. With time and support to open to its healing gifts, the passage to motherhood brings a deepening in your intimate knowing of yourself - a powerful, alive, embodied, instinctual feminine being.
Ishara offers herself as a spiritual companion on the journey, to witness and assist the blossoming mother in you.