The Necessary Act of Closing the Birth Portal in Ceremony with Ceremonialist Kirstin Ford
When you hear the word “postpartum” what comes to mind? Anxiety, depression, pain, mood swings, exhaustion? If you’ve given birth, you might also add overwhelming love, tenderness and indescribable joy. However, society’s connotation of postpartum is more negative than positive. And the focus is primarily on the baby, failing to see that the baby’s well-being is inextricably tied to the mother’s well-being.
So, what if society’s focus was on supporting you first, mama? Cherish and support you, ask about your heart, shower you with praise. Imagine being honored and celebrated in ceremony as the one who brings life into this world. You transcended time and space to bring your baby to Earth. As you emerge from this immense Rite of Passage, well-meaning friends and family marvel at your perfect baby.
Mothers are aching inside to be marveled at, to be cradled in someone’s arms, to be held and touched as tenderly as they embrace their babies. And mothers not only deserve this, it’s my belief (and a growing community of many other birth keepers and mothers) that this is actually essential for humanity to thrive. Focusing on the well-being of the mother will ensure that her baby, her family and the community she is part of is healthy and happy. Tending a newly birthed mother is life-sustaining for the entire world.
Birth is a life-altering, earth-shattering event that leaves you irrevocably changed. It’s as if every bit of yourself has been thrown up in the air and at the moment of your birth it all comes crashing down. Some of those pieces may fall effortlessly into place. But the rest of you feels like you’re walking around in a haze searching for something familiar in the dark as you navigate those vulnerable first few months.
This precious time asks so much of the mother and modern culture has more or less abandoned her at her time of greatest need. We weren’t meant to be alone in this. Physically, spiritually, emotionally, mentally carrying the weight of postpartum is a community responsibility and time of transition supported by all. Many indigenous cultures have beautiful rites of passage to honor this massive transition. Inspired by these ceremonies and my unique spiritual path in Reiki, Ayurveda, Quantum Healing, Herbalism and Somatic Health, I created the Birth Portal Closing Ceremony. Its purpose is to honor, celebrate, nourish, alchemize and hold you during a time when the veil between worlds is thin and the portal is left open. Your own ceremony facilitates the closing of this energetic portal through integration rituals and practices as you are carried forward on your path as Mother. Assimilating the internal and external landscape of your birth is a vital first step forward in your motherhood journey. Without this integration process, your body and mind cannot find closure. It’s like having one foot in the past and one foot in the future.
The Birth Portal Closing Ceremony is a four-week deep-dive into your birth story, matrilineage, connection to your womb. It reestablishes the flow of energy in your body by closing the door on the fluid, liminal space you navigated to bring your child into the world. And, when necessary, sutures your heart and womb from the events that led to your birth as a Mother. Because no two births are alike, your birth story is uniquely encoded with wisdom only you can interpret. My role as a ceremonialist and mother shepherd is in guiding you toward those golden threads woven into your birth experience so you may recognize the wisdom and power held within them. Through this process, you not only encode your own DNA with this intelligence, but you are altering the genes of your lineage – past, present and future.
Over this four-week period, we move through aspects of your birth story with a blend of ancient and modern healing techniques. Storytelling is powerful medicine. You’ll share your entire birth story aloud, first to me and then to your community and family in the following days. The next two sessions focus on: honoring your former Maiden Self, exploring your new identity as Mother and reconnecting to your incredible body and powerful womb. It’s a return for you, but not to the home you knew before. It’s a return to your heart, your true north, your sovereignty. The world around you may change. Your baby’s face grows older. Your priorities shift. Your relationships evolve. But in your heart, you are home. And rooted here, you are nourished, balanced, sovereign. The final session is an elaborate and stunning ceremony filled with sacred rituals, sound healing and calming ayurvedic treatments to help you feel beautiful and divine. This final ceremony signals to your body it is time to close the door on this chapter and step forward confidently and joyfully as you grow alongside your baby.
For mothers who’ve birthed before, this ceremony can feel especially healing and heart-warming. Mama is able to integrate aspects of each of her births. She will gain a deeper understanding of why her children came into the world in the unique ways they did and peer back in time to this truly magical period in her Matrescence journey.
Ready to close your birth portal? Book a call here.
In the meantime, here are three potent rituals I use with clients that start the process of integration, celebration and rejuvenation, Mama!
- STORYTELLING. Share your birth story with a supportive person who can anchor the space as you work through the bigger, possibly painful moments of your labor. Choose someone who can show up how the banks of a river hold the tumultuous waters as they collide with rocks descending down the mountain.
- JOURNAL REFLECTION. Spend 7 minutes writing on the following prompt: What makes me feel resourced? Resourced is a functional state in which you’ve met all of your essential needs and can respond in the moment from a place of self-regulated presence: well-fed, rested, calm and supported. Keep this list in the notes section of your phone and add to it over time. Reference this list when you feel under-resourced and share this list with your people so they can support you!
- THRESHOLD CROSSING. Build a living threshold out of beloved objects from your home and in nature. Include meaningful items like: candles, sand, leaves, your baby’s umbilical cord, photos, affirmation notes from labor, ultrasounds. After you’ve gathered and built your threshold, take a few minutes to reflect on your path here. Your fertility journey, conception, pregnancy and labor or adoption and life in Motherhood. When you’re ready, step across your threshold and let the significance of this moment move through you. On the other side, pause, breathe and acknowledge your willingness to embody this new version of yourself. Celebrate your journey here and recognize that the journey matters more than any destination.
Kirstin Ford is a Ceremonialist, Wellness Guide and Certified Ayurvedic Coach & Reiki Master. Her mission is to create safe spaces for women to return to themselves and witness their divine potential through ceremony. A resonant blend of science, spirit and nature infuse her life and her work. She believes and has seen, both in her own life and the lives of her clients, the power in moving toward the shadows in a world where people often escape their darkness at all costs. Through her use of ancient healing modalities and modern wisdom, she helps you bring the light of Love into the far corners of your body + mind + soul.
The content provided in this article(s) is provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical or other professional advice. Neither Carson Meyer nor C & The Moon LLC are liable for claims arising from the use of or reliance on information contained in this article.