Our Blessingway

August 13, 2009

On August 9th, many of our friends gathered together for a Blessingway celebrating the upcoming birth of our son, Mateo Kenika Carpenter.

A Blessingway is a traditional Navajo ceremony that honors mothers- (or in this case, parents-) to-be. It is similar to a baby shower, though the focus is on using ritual to celebrate the community connections that will support the new family on its journey.

Our community gathers around as we assemble a mobile from symbolic items that people have brought for us.

This is the mobile. Each item hanging from it has a special meaning. I am sure Mateo will be fascinated by it!

Michael and I in the seats of honor. This is also where we sat to open a multitude of thoughtful gifts for our baby. Jen, who facilitated the ritual aspects of the celebration, stands nearby.

Michael and I cut a delicious three-layer cake that Lane made for us.

Me with my sister, Sarah, and our little buddy, Julian.

At the end of the celebration, everyone gathered in a circle, and we all held onto a piece of hemp twine. Our friend, Jen, asked me and Michael to look around and see how each person in the circle was connected to us and was there to support us as we walk the journey of parenthood. Jen asked that we take a moment to think of Sage, Mateo's brother, and honor him as well. Then a length of twine was cut for each person, and we tied them around our wrists to wear as a symbol of solidarity until Mateo is born.


Anonymous said...

Hi Jessie, Glad to hear from you again. Mateo's site is on my "favorites" list now. George and I will be in Oregon in late October and hope to meet the little guy. Love, Susan

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