As a Chaplain Intern at Griffin Hospital, one of my clinical assignments was to offer spiritual care and pastoral comfort to new mothers in The Birth Center. The first hours I spent with these moms, in this intimate atmosphere of gratitude and thanksgiving, felt like the very time to celebrate their recent child birth and to mark the event with some special recognition.
- "If you had a blessing for your baby, what blessing
would you say to your new baby? What blessing
in life do you wish most for your baby?"
A "Blessing for My Baby" came almost spontaneously from these new mothers. Some blessed with religious words. Some weren't sure what a "blessing" was until they heard "wish." Some mothers were uncertain: they "hadn't thought about it." Some said something that sounded like a cocktail toast. Others were certain and forthright, especially about "good health." (Given the "health care setting," and their own very recent childbirth experiences, this focus on health, their own and their baby's, is not surprising.)
Religious or not, these mothers also taught me how empowered they felt to be blessing their own babies in their own words.
Before leaving the mother's room, as their Chaplain I would walk over to the baby, quietly call it by name and say words that flowed from the heart of our conversations and the mother's own blessing for her precious baby, from her heart and mine, from her faith and mine, from her hopes and mine.
A Sacred Blessing
With every mother and baby, I felt I was on sacred ground. With every blessing I felt blessed. With every newborn I felt hope renewed for a better world. With every mother's words I heard the silent transcendence of eternal love.
Some Blessings by Mothers for their Newborn Babies: (names have been changed to protect privacy)
- Joanne for baby Tyler: "A blessing for Tyler? I hope that he
will be loved and accepted by his two-year old older brother.
That he stays well and healthy."
- Jeanne for baby Dante: "A good education: that he goes to
college, graduates, and goes on from there...health....."
- Linda for baby Ethan: "... that Ethan be well, and be guided
by God throughout his life, especially when I can't be with him.
I'd ask that for both my sons...."
- Amy for her baby twins: "For them: a long healthy life, with
lots of fun growing up like I had."
- Colleen for baby Hannah: "Happiness. I hope whatever she
chooses to do will bring her happiness."
- An Invitation: On Blessing Babies, Best Wishes for My Baby
- It's never too late to bless your child intentionally with your own words from your own heart. We invite you to share these "Blessings and Best Wishes" with our readers for possible future publication. If you have a blessing for your baby, what blessing would you say to your new baby?
- Send your blessing to:
- All About Baby Magazine Baby Blessings
- PO Box 565
- Branford, CT 06405.
- Letters to Baby: A Keepsake of Blessings and Wisdom for New Babies, Chaz Corzine, Editor, 1997. Many letters for newborns, mainly Christian, some from famous personalities.
- Great Occasions, Carl Seaburg, Editor, Beacon Press, Boston, 1968. An excellent source book for all "great occasions" for all faiths.
|Peggy Block was a Chaplain Intern at the Childbirth Center at Griffin Hospital and is studying for ordination.
She is a Residential Counselor at Green Chimneys Children's Services & lives in Ridgefield with
her husband & daughter.