I want to say “Thank you”! As I read your part of the blog post I see that you are an introvert and while I don’t want to overwhelm you at the same time I want to express to you my appreciation xo.
“Thank you” for agreeing to do this blog post for me. Your message brought tears to my eyes.
“Thank you” for hiring me to decorate your pregnant belly. Your Blessingway reminded me of why I love my job so much. I LOVE when I’m hired to share my love of art at such amazing events like your Blessingway.
“Thank you” to your entire guest list for their part in this blog post. Peace, Love and Happiness to everyone! From Linda, Wild Flower Artist.
A Blessingway is an old Navajo (Native American) ceremony, which celebrates a woman’s rite of passage into motherhood. Unlike a traditional baby shower, where gifts are purchased for the baby, a Mother Blessing is all about nurturing the mother-to be and celebrating motherhood.
It doesn’t matter what religion the mother is “A Mother Blessing” helps the mother to prepare herself for the birth, emotionally, spiritually and mentally, for the all-important role of a new mother. She feels “held” ‘love” and supported by those she loves and respects.
As a cherished and beloved member of Jaimie’s circle of support, I would like to invite you to Jaimie’s Blessingway to be held on Sunday, February 28th from 1-4PM at Jaimie and Mike’s house.
This is not a baby shower. Often times in the West, we celebrate pregnancy by anticipating and welcoming the new baby. Little emphasis is placed on the new mother and the fears and challenges that accompany the unknown. Blessingways are rooted in ancient Navajo tradition and serve to honor the mother and support her through her journey of labor and delivery and into new motherhood.
This is an afternoon of ritual, prayer, connection, sharing, pampering, laughter and storytelling. Of raising our collective energy, empowering, and dispelling fears to weave a web of support for Jaimie so that she feels prepared for her path ahead.
We’re looking forward to sharing this special afternoon with you.
"This was my first time attending and organizing a Blessingway and it was one of the most profound, meaningful, and engaging celebrations of motherhood that I have ever participated in. While baby showers in the West typically focus on gathering supplies for a new baby in (often times) superficial ways, the Blessingway served to honor and support Jaimie's journey through birth and delivery into new motherhood by drawing on the collective wisdom and energy of Jaimie's female tribal members. Linda from Wild Flower Artist was a fabulous addition to the group. Her spirit and energy were quickly welcomed into our group and she became an active participant. She painted a beautiful tree of life on Jaimie's belly with a vine of leaves and flowers on our hands to symbolize our interconnectedness and supportive bond with Jaimie. Linda-WFA added a beautiful level of art and beauty to our ceremony and we would recommend her highly to anyone considering a similar event.
First rays of light arose from a cold, dark winter--smelled like hope, relief. Already the day was blessed. I didn't know what a Blessingway was and did not want any baby party because, as an introvert, a baby shower sounds nightmarish. But the big bath of first spring sunlight said we were in for something entirely different.
Ashley had an idea, a book and a wish to create a ceremony to support the transition to motherhood-- to talk about the truth.
My job was to do nothing; to try not to block and to receive support and generosity.
Friends and family gathered around a ring of fire in our backyard and Victoria opened the ceremony with sage, sweet grass and an herbal mix to welcome us and to create the intention. To my surprise each woman was deeply moved, from the first moment, direct from the heart, to spontaneously compose blessings for us and baby. We knew something very real was unfolding- whatever it was.
It is difficult to receive a flood of love and generosity but I received it for Rosie. She is a miracle, as all babies are, but created against the odds. She is the seedling rooted so deeply underground that she did not bloom for many years.
I became receptive again as I I sat in a chair in a sunbeam to let Linda draw a Tree of Life on my belly- a symbol instantly recognized and loved by everyone- even by Obgyn docs who were delighted during subsequent exams
The feeling of henna ink, scented of lavender, being sweetly painted on my belly by the hand of the tender artist Linda was like a butterfly landing on your finger.
Friends and family read letters to baby Rosie. They gave me much needed advice and stories of courage and mothering in a thousand different ways. The resonant thread was the F-ing" messy, imperfect, frustrating, ravenous, tireless power of parenting.
The precious rarity of the imperfect connects.
Linda further connected us by painting a henna flower on the hands of the guests, who could linger in that reminder- a lasting smile.
Stories were sealed by beads and yarn tying us together.
I want to give Rosie everything but I know that there is only one thing I can give her perfectly- a community of loving, crazy, wise, weathered, women.
The honesty and love gshared made a web around my fears
The beauty of the Blessingway is not anything I could have created, only something I could take in like a sunset.
We crave storytelling and ceremony and wished we could do it more.
Henna drawing is a powerful and lasting element of that story. I'm basking in the beauty of it when I look at my belly. The tree is still here more than a week later and I hope a shadow of it remains during labor.
Thank you Linda, friends, family, sunshine, stories and Rosie.
I'm so lucky and amazed.
with growing love !
It was wonderful having you (Linda-WFA) at my daughters' Blessingway on Sunday. I love the way you made her feel so comfortable and tended to her with such respect and professionalism. She was in pure joy the whole day and had beautiful belly art to enjoy. You are a very talented artist and a kind woman. Thanks so much!
I will say that the experience of the Blessingway was special, in that it focused on storytelling and storytelling by women, in order to share wisdom-support. In this way, I'd imagine, it must differ from a baby shower, which I can honestly say I have never attended. I would guess, where a shower is materially oriented -- "Wow, look at these little booties for Baby X!" a Blessingway focuses on giving experiences to one another. It represents telling tales from the heart and Linda, you also told/tell visual tales, via your body art. The beads collected represent pieces of truth from each of our tribe of females
As the women of the Torah (Old Testament Bible for Christians) had gathered away from men at the pending time around a birth, to support one another in a separate tent, we also formed our tent, in Jaimie's living room.
We created a festival ei: "the tribe of Rosie."
And that's quite cool
The glow of that Sunday at Jaime's still fills me with so much warmth.
Cousin Susan Xo
I don't know if I have the right words to say. It is so hard to articulate what that day meant. It made everyone feel involved in the birth of Jamie's baby. Unlike a baby shower for everyone just lose and as this was so much more. It seemed to have Jamie's personality all over it. Rosie is one very very lucky little girl. Jamie and Mike will be incredible parents. The all-inclusive experience was something I will never forget. I tried to explain it to those who were not there but words cannot describe. Thank you for putting it all together it was an experience that can never be repeated. With much gratitude and thanks.
Linda what wonderful photos you took! I loved the ones of all hands around and Jaimie in the middle. It was so incredible to see all the flowers on each hand, reaching out and being separate yet deeply connected extensions of Jaimie’s tree of life. I have been enjoying watching the transformation and deepening color of the pattern on my hand. The henna looks so gorgeous with the turquoise yarn. It was the first time I ever experienced the application of henna. I like the temporary permanence of it. Once, a long time ago in Europe, I had seen it done for a bride and her attendants.
Your presence, as you moved from hand to hand around the circle, was so full of love, focus and creativity, yet totally unobtrusive as the swirl of blessings, wishes, advice and contributions of creativity continued throughout the afternoon.
Wishing you all the best and I hope many more belly blessings are celebrated and decorated by your skilled artistry!
In deep appreciation, xo Helena
This picture was at the end of Jaimie Blessingway with all her family and friends gathered around her. Jaimie had such a loving and supportive group of women.
Would you like to have Linda from WFA decorate your pregnant belly with Henna? I enjoy drawing all my intricate Henna designs free-hand. The process of Henna Body Art is very relaxing, both for the recipient and the spectators. Each batch of Henna is handmade 100% natural aromatherapy relaxing essential oils are added to the Henna for you relaxing pleasure. You will be mesmerized as the designs emerge. Many people report a deep sense of ease while having henna applied. A Henna Blessingway session begins with selecting a design element that speak to you. If you let me know your design ideas ahead of time, I am happy to do some artistic research to find some unique ways to represent the elements you have chosen, or I can create an original design spontaneously for you. I will travel to your event to decorate you and your guest with Henna.