A Bit o’Sunshine

I was invited to a baby shower/blessingway thing for a friend of mine, which is really lovely, and I’m totally gonna go.  I haven’t been to one in a long time…I’d sworn off them because it was too hard for me emotionally.  I made the mistake of agreeing to host a blessingway a few years ago, and I spent half the party out on my patio, crying.  After that, I made excuses not to go because it was just too hard to pretend to be “ok” when I really, really wasn’t.  I felt selfish for not being able to get the hell over myself and go celebrate my friends happiness, but I also felt like it was unfair (to me and everyone else) to have me lie convincingly about being ok, just so as to not ruin their day.  Sounds complicated, but it’s all just part of the self-inflicted mind-fuckery of fertility troubles.

But now… well, it’s different now.  So I was thinking about that today.

I’ve been really bogged down by how bad I’m feeling physically, and really, I *am* happy and grateful, but it’s hard to be present in that when I feel like crap all the time.

So I took a moment to imagine forward to being at my friend’s shower, and then another one for another friend just behind her, and then another friend after that…. and knowing that now, I’ll have my own fullness and joy to bring there with me, instead of an empty womb full of sadness.  And I realized that after all of theirs, it’ll be time for mine – something I didn’t think I’d ever have.  Happy thoughts!

And then… I decided that I don’t want a baby shower or a blessingway for myself.  I often find them to be either cheesy, or stilted, or too gift-pressured.  I’m just HAPPY and I want to have a relaxed, happy day with my womenfolk, and be happy together.

So I decided that I want a shikhatt!

I want dolmades, tabouleh, and olives, and I want a roomful of women cracking jokes, making sexy eyes and doing pelvic drops. Yes!

Oh, what’s a shikhatt, you ask?

Well, in a nutshell, it’s a special thing at Moroccan celebrations,  commonly seen at weddings and childbirth.  A shikhatt is led by a woman (a sheikha), or a troupe of sheikas who come to entertain the celebrants.  Sort of like a halfa (Mid East dance party with food & belly dancers), but rowdier & with a mission.  The sheikhas are women of “worldly and carnal knowledge”, which they communicate through their bawdy songs and dancing.  The sheikha’s performance is not only to entertain, but also to coach a virgin-bride for the marriage bed, or a mother-to-be for the birthing room.  The very famous belly dancer “Morocco” (with whom I had the pleasure of taking a shikhatt workshop with a few years ago), wrote an article on it.  It can be found with some digging on her own site, or directly here.

If we have any “official” sheikhas in town, I don’t know of them, and I don’t feel I need it to be all official even if I did.  But I do know plenty of dancers, and I’d want a lot of them at my celebration anyway, so why not make it a fun thing?  I can’t think of anything better in the world than a feast of Middle Eastern food & music, and a crew of happy women dancing together. 🙂

Also, please enjoy some video reference. Great music too!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LPt827Bs1vA

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BvBBtLpqZ7E

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XXEGwjzdjco

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