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What is a Mother Blessing?

Updated: Apr 30

painted pregnant belly

And a Mother Blessing might be way more valuable than a traditional baby shower.


Let me set the scene, you and you are 30+ weeks pregnant and your friend/sister/whoever organises you a baby shower…pretty standard right? You are expected to shlep your large and in charge self out to a party, stand up for hours and play weird games (all while sober.) You receive lots of presents for your unborn baby, and unless you have been really specific, you will probably receive a bunch of stuff you already have, or you wouldn’t choose yourself. And lets face it, your little babe has no idea what’s going on. You most likely end the day feeling tired and with a load of stuff that is nice, but isn’t going to be actually useful to you. Pals, I am here to tell you there is another way.



A Mother Blessing (also known as a Blessingway) is an alternative to a baby shower, the main difference is that it is centred all around you, rather than the baby. (Above and below are some photos from my own lovely gathering!)


A pregnant woman with flower crown hugging a friend

Your loved ones come together to cuddle you up in love and reassurance, sending you off on your journey to parenthood feeling positive and well supported.




The beauty of this is that you can literally do whatever you like, there is no societal template and it is all about you! You are the one who really needs this nurturing and support right now, not your unborn babe. Normally you come together, do some relaxing activities of your choosing, eat some delicious food and come away with gifts for YOU, to set you up to thrive in your fourth trimester.

 

I have planned a few of these in my time (including my own!) so here are some ideas of things you could include:

  • Hand massages, hair braiding, mani/pedi, or any general pampering for the Mother to be (and anyone else who wants to get involved!)

  •   Belly Painting/ belly henna/painting a belly cast you have already had made

  • Hire a local yoga teacher to take you through a relaxing yoga practice and guided relaxation

  • Everyone writing messages or affirmations for you for birth or parenthood

  • Everyone brings some beads and you make bracelets together

  • You all tie a red thread round your wrist to connect you together, which you all cut once you go into labour (this all depends on how woo woo you want to get!)


There are loads of different things you could do, but the most important part is that YOU enjoy it, it is in YOUR style and that you leave feeling happy and loved. Not knackered and weighed down with a load of baby junk.



I had the opportunity to make this gorgeous belly cast for my pregnant bestie, and all her loved ones came together to decorate it at her Mother blessing! Also pictured is my little boy painting my belly at my garden based celebration!


So here’s the other thing that sets a Mother Blessing apart. The presents are for you, and the aim of them is to support you after birth.


Here are some ideas:

  • Postnatal doula vouchers. WORTH THEIR WEIGHT IN GOLD

  • IOU’s for  homecooked food once babe arrives

  • Postnatal massage/ closing the bones vouchers

  • A meal train. I.E they have worked out between them who is going to bring what meal and when. There are even websites you can use to set this up, one is https://www.mealtrain.com/learn/

  • Depending on the closeness to your due time, people could actually bring food for you to portion out and freeze for your postpartum


Are you feeling the theme?! Food is everything! Having good, tasty food available to you is so important for your postnatal recovery, and it is vital that you are not up and cooking for at least a month (you heard me!) AND you will need your partner for support so its best that they are also not busy cooking so they can help you figure out this whole ‘keeping a baby alive’ situation.  Delicious food is what you really need when you are in the postnatal trenches….Your fancy nappy bin is just not going to cut it.


Baby showers are very much about: a. the unborn baby and b. about the friends and family. Although your loved ones are probably well-meaning, they may not understand how knackered you are or how much support you need…so the best thing to do is tell them! If the last thing you want to do is get all dressed up and go for a fancy afternoon tea, then get a big takeaway curry and ask all your friends to come in their pyjamas. Do it YOUR way. Don’t be hemmed in by tradition, or what you feel you SHOULD do. Getting into the swing of asking for what you actually need and being direct with your loved ones will also come in super handy once the baby arrives. Prioritise yourself, your wellbeing (both physical and emotional) and soak up all that oxytocin and love, to carry forward into your birth and fourth trimester.


Preparing for Postpartum needs to take just as much of your energy as preparing for birth, it can be a really rocky time and our society is just not set up for new parents to thrive during that time. Invest in that time, for heavens sake make a postnatal plan, AND make sure that your antenatal education covers the fourth trimester too!








A big part of my fourth session in my Hypnobirthing course covers postnatal planning and expectations, AND you are also sent a free postnatal planning and preparing to breastfeed workshop! My Hypnobirthing antenatal course takes place at Evolve Injury Clinic in Long Eaton, which is easily accessible from across Nottingham and Derby! Don't leave your birth and postpartum up to chance, come and have a chat with me and see how I might be able to support you.




 

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