The Red Tent

the red tent. photo-  Sarah Matheson

the red tent. photo- Sarah Matheson

This past weekend I had the opportunity to host ‘A Red Tent,’ '- celebrating the journey of Motherhood. I have been a guest at many of these events over the years, and I was beyond excited to share this experience with the women in my life. The very women that I share this crazy, beautiful journey with. The women that lift me up, mother my kids, take care of me, and love my family. This was my ‘thank you’ to them.

It’s a night to recharge, connect, and laugh but mainly to remember... that we are all supported. Even if we’re in different stages of motherhood, we’re all in this together.

So, Friday night we danced under the harvest moon, drank wine, and sat together- shoulder to shoulder in the red tent.

Sarah Matheson captured all these radiant Mamas in these photos.

I asked Peyton Callahan to write a few words about the history of this event. She has hosted an annual Red Tent for many years and now hosts and facilitate women retreats, teen retreats, and mother/daughter workshops. Incredible right?

The Red Tent is rooted in ancient history as a gathering place for women. "The Red Tent" is based on the best-selling novel by Anita Diamant. The author was inspired by native cultures where women were go during menses and childbirth. She referred to this sacred space as The Red Tent. It was in this space where women would experience birth, loss, reprieve...together. Her novel has inspired a profound movement of "Red Tents" throughout the world.

Eighteen years ago, my friend Nicole and I were invited to our first Red Tent ceremony in honor of our friend's birth of her baby. We were both recently married and without children. Julie Hobert, our dear friend and mentor, was hosting this unique shower celebrating Leslie and her baby girl. It was the Friday night after the terrorist attacks on September 11. Feelings were tumultuous. But light shined bright that dark evening. We felt what it was like to share and hold space for others. We felt what it was like to feel connected to strangers. It was a powerful experience that transformed the way we now relate to other women. Since that profound experience, we have hosted annual Red Tent ceremonies that continue to fill us with wisdom, love and support.

Why a ceremony? Ceremonies remind us to remember. They are organized with intention and ritual. The Red Tent reminds women that they are heard and held. It reminds them to celebrate their power within and that they are supported on their life’s journey.

-Peyton Callahan

the harvest moon. photo-  Sarah Matheson

the harvest moon. photo- Sarah Matheson

Many women have expressed interest in hosting something similar for all the women in their life. Please reach out to me if you want to learn more details about the event. I’m happy to share!

Long live the Red Tent.