Despite being part of our cultural heritage, ceremony and ritual are rarely present in our daily lives. Significant events
and transformative moments are often lost in the busyness of life.
When women, groups and communities support each other, wonderful things begin to happen. People feel acknowledged, considered, heard and valued; time given from one to another is never time wasted.
Ceremonies offer focused care at each stage of womanhood, here I share the journey from pregnancy through to the post-partum period.
I also offer this space for women's circles as they flow through the transitional seasons of their life ~ Maiden, Mother, Maga, Crone.
Celebrating the Mother as she moves towards the end of her pregnancy, filled with wonderful rituals that recognise the importance of her emotional health as she prepares for the birth of her baby at a time of deep transition.
Surrounded by a circle of women this ceremony is a shared one. There will be focus on relaxation for the Mother: herbal foot bath, massage, reflexology, positive affirmations and stories shared.
A birth bead line or necklace can be made using beads chosen by each person present, to be kept close at the birth .. a reminder of the feminine strength that surrounds her.
A bracelet string, red in colour, joins the wrists of the women present. When all are connected, it is then symbolically cut between each person, enabling them to tie off and wear it, representing the circle of friendship.
Belly art, painting or henna is a happy and fun way to bless the blossoming belly.
(belly casting can be arranged separately as is more suitable as a stand alone)
Salt bowl, this is where flowers and herbs are added to salts, along with shared love, good wishes and intentions for the Mother; each person getting some to take home to either simply keep or use for their own relaxation.
Bespoke ceremony, lasting approximately 2 hours, £80 or £60 for birth clients
Cerrada - Closing the Bones
A sacred and traditional post partum healing ceremony, acknowledging, nurturing and deeply honouring the Mother and her journey to this point and onwards. Cocooning her in warmth and love, facilitating moments in time for her to direct her energy, or chi, back inwards, with gentle attention paid to the openness that can be felt following birth.
We expand and unfurl during pregnancy, particularly around the hips and pelvis, emotionally we bare ourselves and energetically we give out. It is this openness that is at the heart of my care for new Mothers and how I can gently support this, with a focus to encourage heat back in the body to assist with healing.
A herbal foot soak begins the relaxation and offers a soothing way into the ceremony, there is opportunity here for birth story to be shared; exploring all feelings that arise within this. A short reflexology relaxation can follow before moving into the sifting/massage with the Rebozo, it is used to rock the pelvis gently back into alignment and physically bring the bones closer together, followed by more specific abdominal massage using warming oils, which leads into the closing.
This sealing element of the ceremony is where the woman is held and honoured at various points from her crown to her toe, using the scarves to physically encourage this bringing back together, with particular emphasis on the hips and womb area. Holding this space for her to feel, acknowledge, release and re-gather her energy inwards, allowing as much time as is needed while she integrates her experience.
Here she lies, for as long as she needs to. Nothing is rushed; the gift is time and open-hearted intentions.
This closing can take place with just myself, chosen women folk or birth partner.
Ceremony lasting approximately 2 hours, £80 or £60 for birth clients
Bengkung Belly Binding
(or you may find simply belly wrapping using a Rebozo scarf, or similar, is more manageable for self care).
Bengkung is rooted in Malaysian culture, and is a traditional method of healing following birth.
Binding offers torso stability while the vital organs begin to shrink back to their pre-pregnancy state, supporting the back and encouraging good posture, while providing warmth to encourage the healing of the abdominal muscles.
It can also help in bringing back together separated abdominal muscles (diastasis recti), this is where the tummy muscles can separate as a normal part of pregnancy pregnancy.
A long piece of cloth is used, weaving and wrapping around the torso, providing strong support for womb, belly, ribs and hips.
It can be done soon after birth, and is especially effective during the 6-8 weeks post partum and can be worn for between one and twelve hours day. It remains important to actively engage the abdominal muscles while binding.
On an emotional level it offers the feeling of being 'held', warming the womb space and lessening the empty feeling that some women can experience following the birth of their baby. It can form part of the symbolic transitioning towards new Motherhood and also be an element of a cerrada ceremony.
Incorporated as part of my post partum service, or as a stand alone at my hourly rate, £20ph.