Do you have an ISO baby tucked away safely at home waiting for their chance to get out and meet all those people that love them.
Have you or someone close to you had a baby in 2020, the year of the Covid pandemic? It’s now late May and a dear of mine had her gorgeous baby daughter- amidst the pandemic. They are both well and healthy and the world is a better place for it. Im thankful it’s now and not late March, as we are now starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Weddings are now ten plus two, and people can travel for recreation from 1 June.
In general it is good practice to allow the couple some time to adjust to their new life with their newborns before visiting. It is good practice to respect the wishes of the parents and comply with any requests to be fully vaccinated (my husband who hates needles was reluctant to have the Whooping Cough immunisation before our first baby was born, he did it, but sulked about it), before and more so now we are washing our hands and ensuring we maintain good hygiene around the vulnerable.
So many of us are meeting the new important people in our lives for the first time via videolink (and there are so many options! Facebook, facetime, Zoom, Skype and the like). So now more than ever it is a time to embrace those Welcoming parties – a time for the Name Giving Ceremony to really shine.
So many people are still unsure of what a Naming Day is and how it would look for them.
Its similar to when I talk to my couples about planning their wedding ceremony, I remind them of the legal requirements that we must include in the service and then I encourage them to work with me to create a truly unique ceremony that reflects them as a couple. Not what they think they should have, but what they WANT. It is the same for Naming days, I have been to quite a few. Some have been at a local park, or the family home in the backyard, I’ve officiated a formal naming ceremony in a reception venue with a sit down lunch and DJ for music and when it was our turn we held the ceremonies of our two children on the very same land that we married on, in my parents gardens. Each place is chosen for a reason, and it incorporates the feel and message that you want to create on the day. Because of Covid-19 families are missing each other, some families are separated by oceans with closed boarders and the restrictions are heart-breaking to many.
I am typically contacted to give a Naming ceremony in lieu of a religious ceremony (a baptism or Christening) however I have also been engaged to officiate for families who decide to do both. They attend the Church with the closest family and friends for a formal service – and then I attend the reception after and officiate the more personalised ceremony that confirms the relationship between the infant and their godparents – but also it’s a specifically tailored service to include everyone that attends, a service that is all about the little one and the little personalities that they have, their own characteristics that they have already developed
Often I officiate Name giving ceremonies at the first birthday party. Again, all those little legs that have celebrated their first birthday while in isolation missed both the party and the opportunity for their name giving. So if you’re little one missed their first year celebration – you still have an opportunity to get your loved ones together to celebrate that important milestone. The bonus of having a Naming ceremony when the infant is 12months old, or older, is that there is so much more to share, so many more memories to draw on, so many more little details to include in the service.
If you are at home nursing your newborn maybe consider a time in the future, a time when everyone will be safe to come together, to celebrate your family. It will be a period of joy and also of gratitude for having the freedom and safety to enjoy a healthy life. At the Naming day you will want to welcome everyone and invite them to have an important role in the life of your family and of your dearest. It is a chance for you to thank people for the assistance that they were able to provide you during your time at home with the baby. That’s the messages and check ins, the wholesome food and if you’re lucky someone came over to help clean and wash.
It may also be a chance for you to publicly thank the frontline staff that continued to work tirelessly thru the pandemic to ensure your baby was delivered safe and healthy. It may be the frontline staff amongst your guest that you wish to acknowledge for providing essential services.
It is the best communities that will come out of the covid-19 pandemic ok, the ones that have each others support. The communities that are made of the spirit to work together, to allow the strengths in the groups to counteract for those that are weaker, and not in the sense of duty but in a sense of companionship, for care and concern.
These are the communities that you want to raise your children in, a place where they will always be safe and cared for. Your Naming Ceremony will affirm your childs place within their own community and your community will be strengthened for being recognised.
Tragically around the world there has been many deaths and great sadness, and in Australia we are fortunate to carry a low (although still significant and depressing) Covid fatality rate. We are indeed blessed in this sunburnt country, we deserve to be happy and we deserve to celebrate.
If you’d like to talk some more about the ideas you have to celebrate your family, please get in touch.
Stay safe, Tanya xxx
information on Name Giving Ceremonies please read the other blogs