The Blessing of the Monks
Many years ago we found out that we could not have a baby without medical intervention. Being a mother was something I wanted for so long, but surprisingly, getting the news was not as devastating as I would have expected. In fact, it was almost freeing. It was as if someone or something had simply pointed me down a different path. There was an odd peace about it.
Years passed and I became fulfilled in my career and the joy of being an aunt. I suppose I looked for other ways to “mother” and felt I was contributing to the world in ways other than by raising a child.
Through a series of coincidences, I ended up volunteering to assist a group of Tibetan monks while they were visiting and touring the U.S. They stayed in our home while they were teaching and performing in the Seattle area. As we pulled up to our driveway, I remember being a little embarrassed at the size of our house, especially given what they are used to; sleeping multiple people per room with a dirt floor in India. I apologized for the size of our home and explained that when we bought it, we thought we’d have a family, but that it wasn’t possible.
We had a lovely couple of weeks. We took them to schools and churches and community centers to give talks, and we hung out at home when there was downtime. They did their daily prayer and meditation practice in our living room. It was incredible to see the circle of monks chanting, and luckily, they welcomed us to sit in on their pujas. The sense of peace and compassion was amazing. I don’t even have words for it.
A couple months later, I started feeling a little “off.” You know where this is going. I, of course, had no idea. I hadn’t thought about pregnancy for years and years. In fact, I made an appointment with the doctor and asked if I could be starting peri-menopause because of the odd symptoms I was feeling. My husband and I joke that after we told them of our troubles of having a family, the monks must have said some special prayers. We have no idea what they were saying—it was in Tibetan.
Whether it was a specific prayer on our behalf, or just some kind of energy-altering response to the experience, we do think that at some level they had something to do with Daniel coming into our lives.
We are blessed and I am quite happy with the long winding path that I took to motherhood.
By Jennifer Loomis Photography, Barefoot & Pregnant