Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Birth Celebration Rituals

On Monday our youngest daughter, Sara, gave birth to their third child, our fifth grandchild. I am almost never in the country for the birth of my grandchildren; I was even 1,000 miles away when Sara was born. So to miss the birth of the latest addition was not unusual.

We live in amazing times. After teaching my cultural anthropology class I went to my room and turned on my computer. I noticed that Sara’s Skype light was on and knowing it was 3:30 a.m. their time I suspected something was up. Sure enough, she was beginning labor and about five hours later little Sofia Rose Toombs was born: 3.94 kgs (8 lbs 11 oz) and 53.34 centimeters (21 inches) long. Three hours after they returned home, and the next morning for me, I was able to see the little pink bundle in real time.

The birth celebration custom in India is after the birth the parents and/or grandparents give badam burfi (almond candy), to friends and family. Being on the other side of the world and not near family I bought some badam and distributed the sweets to my students and staff members where I am teaching in Hyderabad.

Someone asked me what the custom is for celebrating birth in America. It use to be the father passed out cigars, but with the tax on tobacco being so high and it being a socially incorrect practice, I’m not sure what people do these days.

What birth celebration rituals are practiced in your country?

Nevertheless, welcome, Sofia, to this great thing called life. God has brought you into this world for His purpose and we look forward to seeing how He will use you for His glory.


Aaron and Sara said...

LOVE IT! Great pics, Dad.

Amrita said...


In Uttar Pradesh we distribute laddus.

UBSGRAD said...

Dr. Lewis, I missed the sweet!

Julie said...

Sofia is one beautiful baby! Congratulations, Grandpa!