Tuesday, April 28, 2015

My Blessingway

It may not always show on my blog, but I am a very natural minded parent.  I'm hippie or crunchy or whatever you want to call it.  Some people are really surprised by this, while others who know me closely know that's just "me."  And since living in Salt Lake City, I've met an amazing group of women/mamas who are so similar in their lifestyle choices as well as parenting philosophies.  It has been such an amazing addition to my life!

It has been especially impactful as I prepare for a natural birth.  They not only understand why it's important to me, but have been able to offer me a wealth of support.  Going into this pregnancy, I didn't have near the confidence I do now about having the birth experience that I want.  These women have all shared their birth stories and encouraged me each day as I get closer & closer to delivery!
And then came the biggest, sweetest surprise!  We all planned a little brunch together a few weeks ago, which was our first get together without the toddlers!  An exciting day!  But little did I know that they all had actually planned a Blessingway for me!  A Blessingway (or sometimes called a mother's blessing) is an old navajo tradition where you celebrate the mother-to-be.  Stories are shared, fears are let go of, and confidence & strength are instilled.  It empowers the mother for her journey through birthing & motherhood.  This gathering was such an amazing & impactful experience for me.  I felt completely supported & loved.

Each Blessingway is unique, but I'll share a few of the details from mine!  First, my friend Celka made us all bracelets with different stones & meaning..  Coral is about bringing new life into the world.  Hematite is a heading stone.  Red jasper brings you strength.  Lapis lazuli is for protection.  Red tiger eye is for the vision to see things through to the end.  Turquoise is for having wisdom.  We all have been wearing our "baby Finn" bracelets since the Blessingway, and they will not be removed until he is born.  It is a lovely reminder of the support I have; I smile each time I see the same bracelet upon my friends' wrists!



Next, my friend Gretchen gave everyone a candle which we will all light once I go into labor.  I find much comfort in the thought that each of them will have a candle lit for me while I journey through Finn's birth.  I can't wait to send that text to let them know labor has begun!  Also, my friend Sarah made a CD with a few songs to help me prepare for  & assist during labor.  Everything was so thoughtful!

And lastly, they all wrote down their favorite birth affirmations and put them in an envelope for me to read only once labor begins!  I know their words of encouragement will be such a huge support for me.  I can't wait to read the different affirmations they have written down!  These women make up my mama tribe!  They make me a better woman, but more importantly a better mother.  We are not competitive, but instead build one another up and support each other through some of our parenting struggles.  I cannot imagine my or Liam's life without them!

(the only picture we took that day)

So as I get ready to give birth, my doula had me create a "sacred space" in my house where I can go to relax, think, & prepare.  Here hangs a banner of birth affirmations from my doula as well as a few of the gifts from my Blessingway.  All of these things will help to aid me through childbirth.  While I love my mama tribe, they unfortunately will not physically be with me through labor.  Instead my doula will be that extra support.  Both Conor & I have developed a strong relationship with her and are incredibly grateful to have her.  I am truly looking forward to this experience! 



My body is capable and strong.
My baby knows how to be born.

I am so ready to meet Finn, 
but I know that he will come in perfect timing when he is ready.
For now, we wait!

18 comments :

  1. A blessingway sounds amazing. I am in awe of women who have natural childbirth and think having this kind of support is key! Sounds like you have met a great group of friends! Will you be having a hospital birth or do you hope for a home birth as well?

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  2. Laura, you have the best friends there! I know you are going to be amazing through Finn's delivery. You're so strong and you've prepared yourself so much for his arrival. I'll be thinking about you in the upcoming days and weeks!

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  3. Wow, what an awesome group of supportive friends! So thoughtful! And more pics that I love! Totally regretting not doing a maternity session!

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    1. Very thoughtful friends, I was shocked & surprised! And if you have more kids you must must must have maternity photos done!

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  4. That is beautiful and such an amazing thing to be surrounded with!

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  5. What an amazing support group! I love that they are so involved in the preparation and birth of Finn...what a special feeling!!!!

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  6. This is so sweet! How nice of them to surprise you and it sounds like you had a special day! It's great to have good support like that!

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  7. Your mama tribe sounds amazing. Y'all sound like such strong and supportive women and I'm so glad you have them. I think you're a rockstar for doing natural birth and I pray that all of your preparations allow you to have the birth you hope for with Finn. I love the idea of a labor candle, I might have to do that for my friends, it sounds like such a supportive idea.

    I have to say, I love that you describe yourself as crunchy :)!

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  8. What a beautiful tradition! I've never heard of it and it sounds amazing - so glad you have that support system!

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  9. Wow! So beautiful! I love this entire idea! I know nothing about birth, but i want it to be as natural as possible when my time comes! Love your sacred space, so inspiring!!

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  10. Beautiful words, "My body is body is capable and strong. My baby knows how to be born." If I have another baby, I'll remember these strong words. Thanks!

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    1. Very strong! I can't wait to see the other birth affirmations that my friends wrote down for me!

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  11. I'm so jealous!! That's so amazing! :) I hope I can make some friends like this! My closest "crunchy mama" moved away recently and it was heartbreaking but of course we say in close contact! She in my encouragement to never give up the battle that breastfeeding, cloth diapering and baby lead weaning can be. She really opened my eyes to trying to do what's best for my child but YOU have inspired me to push for a more natural birth. I wish so much I had made this decision earlier as I am not nearly as confident in myself and my body as I should be. I just keep telling myself exactly what you told me- my body was made for this and my baby knows how to be born. I can't wait for you to meet Finn and I look forward to reading all about it. You are an inspiration :)

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    1. This comment just made my day! One of the reasons I love blogging is to hopefully inspire others, and in ways that will positively affect their lives and their baby's lives too! That's awesome that you at least have one close friend that can guide you through the natural ways of parenting!

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  12. This is amazing!!! I am so happy for you that you have found such an amazing group of women who lift you up and encourage you. THIS is the group of women that I hope to find. Most of my friends don't have kids (and aren't married) so they don't really "get it". I'm hoping to meet some moms like this as Mason goes through school. These women will be friends for life.

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  13. This is so amazing! I've never heard of this before but I LOVE it! So glad you were able to find such a great group of friends. And come on baby Finn!!

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  14. This is so awesome, I haven't heard of a 'blessingway' before, how empowering!! And what an awesome awesome group of friends!! I know you didn't ask, but these are some of my favorite affirmations during (natural) labors/deliveries.. :)

    I am made for this // Good, strong contractions help bring my baby into the world // I will breathe deeply and slowly to relax my muscles and make it easier for my uterus to work // I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me

    You got this, momma!! :) Can't wait to hear of Finn's arrival.

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  15. I hope you know and realize that you inspire so many of us, including me, and this is another reason why I think you are fabulous! What an amazing group of women to have surround you during this special time! Xo, Stephanie

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