you have connected to the most awesome blog in the galaxy. Lucky you. Read away. And dont be a lame spammer. cuz that's lame and stuff.
My photo
Glanvillia, Saint John, Dominica
i am a mom/wife/textile designer gone haywire. I love to sing(music/arts AA degree), craft, exercise, and be goofy. Just living life outside the norm. And the norm thanks me for it. Oh yeah, and I like me some haikus. . . . . . . . . . What are we up to currently? Aaron recently started medical school at Ross University on the island of Dominica in the Caribbean, and the kids and I are along for the crazy ride :)

Thanks, God, for Spit-up

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Tonight I went to my B's blessingway.  Have you ever heard of a blessingway?  Traditionally, it is a native american ritual where an expectant mothers' closest friends come together while the mother waits for her baby to come and they offer spiritual support and such.  This was not that.  This was a really refreshing alternative to a baby shower (even though Brittney also had a baby shower last week, ha ha).  Here's a little from the invite:

A blessingway is for honoring the mother and giving her love and support before her birthing time. Learn more about blessingways here.

Appropriate gift ideas:
~personal letter
~poem by you or someone else
~coupon offering specific help, ex: "1 hour of babysitting any weekday morning"
~something handmade for the mother
~pampering item for the mother, like lotion

A light dinner will be provided. Bring your birthy love energy and well wishes for Brittney and her baby!  We appreciate your prompt RSVP.  Can't wait to see you there!
We all got together for a light dinner and chatting.  We went around the room and offered a poem or word of advice or spiritual thought for Brittney in preparation for her baby to come this week (yes, there were tears), shared gifts (I'll show you mine in a second), and each stamped part of a leather bracelet for Brittney to wear this week.  She chose the words Birth Faith and we each stamped a letter into the leather band with a mallet.  Before we left, we each chose a bead and a word to be made into a necklace for her as well.  My bead was a sphere with swirled lighter shades of this dark sandy-textured sea green  (HTML #698B69).  I chose the word "calm."   We were each given a little jar with a candle to light when we hear the news that the baby's ready to come (to remind us to keep our thoughts with her while it's lit).
This whole thing sounds so hippyish, and those who know me know I'm a little anti-hippy sentiment, but I have to say that I'd rather this than a babyshower any day (although britt's baby shower was fun- don't get me wrong- this is just a general observation).  This is just so much more personal and supportive for mommy-to-be.
If you know my B, you know that her baby was found to have a cleft lip in the ultrasounds.  They don't know yet if he'll have a cleft palate, but they're preparing for it.  They've got special expensive bottles and B is worried about nursing and how difficult feeding him will be.  She also mentioned how all of the things you normally worry about with your baby seem so trivial once you're faced with a big challenge.  Mothers who worry that their baby has a little mark on their arm or funny hair or the like, need to wake up and realize what miracles their children really are.  Be thankful for the cries (that means your child can breathe).  Be thankful for your child's eavesdropping when you're having a serious conversation (that means your child can hear).  Be thankful for the midnight feedings (that means your child can eat).
With that in mind, I made this haiku and these burp cloths (specific to her instance):
 What a goofball.  Do you like the fifties outlet right in the middle of the wall?  I know. weird.  Also, see the mickey mouse band-aid I have on my middle finger?  That's cause I accidentally sawed through the top of my finger and fingernail yesterday.  You'd think that the knife wouldn't make it through that sheild of a fingernail, but holy crud it sliced through like butter. fun stuff.

ug slouching. and dumb face.  why do I make such faces?  oh yeah, that's just how my face is.  drat.

And that's just how HIS face is too, apparently.  Yes, that's a QT cup back there.  And yes, there's also a cup from Costco where I had the always amazing polish sausage with kraut and diet coke this afternoon for a buck fifty.  Also, see the cloth I'm making- how it's got a little dip in it along the edge?  That goes right by your neck so it stays on your shoulder more easily. 

the haiku goes:
a baby who burps
is a baby who's well-fed.
thanks, God, for spit-up.

and I put TGFS (Thanks, God, For Spit-up) on one corner of each burp rag (using the freezer-paper method).  Helps keep things in perspective.  Brittney got some pictures at the blessingway so I'll post them when she sends them :)
These are made of cotton print and jersey. The top two are backed in an olive green jersey that matches the green stripe on the the 3rd cloth and the bottom two are lined in dark brown.

ADDENDUM: Here she is :)

 Isn't she cute? :)
oops, I should've had her wear it on the other shoulder so you could see the writing. oh well :)


Lori Thompson said...

CUTE!!! You are so creative!

Francesca said...

Nice post! I wish I could have stayed for it all. I, like you, am a little ant-hippy sentiment, but Cherise has helped me see the goodness in some of it, like blessingways. If you ever have another baby, I will throw you one!

I also wanted to apologize if my story made you feel bad. I did not mean to do that. I understand what it feels like to be in your shoes, not with breastfeeding but with birth. Everyone in that room (well, not sure about you) has had one or more natural births, and my attempt ended in a c-section. In fact, I was a little nervous going because obviously the topic of the night is birth! Anyway, your story reminded me of the bigger picture. Caden is healthy and happy. Thank you!

Stephanie Shumway said...

ha ha Francesca- nope, I wasn't offended at all. And I've not had a natural birth either. Both of mine were breach csections. you're not alone :)

Lacey said...

If it makes anyone feel better- I don't have birthing hips! Genetic. They come how they come! I focus more on being a good mom rather than how I delivered a baby!

Super cute birth cloths Stephanie! You rock!