This ceremony is based in part on Navajo traditions concerned with healing, creation, harmony, and peace. But the tradition of caring for, supporting, encouraging the new mother and the celebration of a new life is nothing new in many cultures. Women for centuries have come together during this time to connect with one another in the celebrations of life—something that we have lost in our Western culture.
A blessingway ceremony can be based on any religion or no religion; it varies according to the desires of the mother-to-be. The elements of the blessingway each mother chooses are symbolic of what are important to her, her family, and the blessing and protection of her and her baby. Elements include prayer, chanting, meditation, alterspace creation, adorning the mother (henna, belly casting, floral crown), sharing stories and mother’s wisdom, and preparing a gift from the attendees. Often participants will offer beads for a necklace that can be worn on the mama’s birthing day. Other times, an affirmations hanging can be created with special wishes, blessings or powerful affirmations which influence the thoughts around birth and the mother-to-be’s ability to birth. The mother’s blessing ends with a feast.