7 Interesting Birth Customs from Around the World
Every society has a different way of expressing and doing things. There are a variety of different traditions related to marriages, birthdays, deaths and birthing. Here we have listed some of the most unique and interesting birth customs from around the world.
1. Making beschuit met muisjes in Holland
The Dutch have a cute way of celebrating the joyous occasion of a birth. They serve guests and well wishers who come to visit the baby, a unique dish called beschuit met muisjes, which literally translates as ‘biscuits with mice’. The ‘mice’ are actually little licorice bits with blue-and-white coating if a boy is born and pink-and-white coating for a girl child.
2. Indonesian jamu massage
Indonesian mothers are very relaxed because of the refreshing tradition of the Jamu massage that is practiced there. A masseur or masseuse comes to the new mother’s home everyday for a period of a month to massage her and give her the much needed rest after giving birth.
3. Cake sprinkled on the head of Irish babies
Believe it or not, but a part of the wedding cake of Irish people is saved until the baby’s birth so as to ‘wet’ the baby’s head at its christening. This ritual symbolize the circle of life and the top tier of the whiskey wedding fruit cake which stands for good luck and ‘fertility’ is saved for the birth of the couple’s first child.
4. Germany name registration
In Germany, you can’t keep crazy sounding names like Apple, Coco, Kyd, etc., like people do in the US. The government is strict about a baby’s name as it doesn’t want its kids to be the butt of all ridicule when they grow up. You either have to settle with a common name or give a very valid reason for naming your kid something unusual.
5. Preserving the umbilical cord in Japan
The Japanese have a somewhat weird ritual of preserving the umbilical cord in a box made of wood called heso which is symbolic of the mother and child’s relationship for the past, present and future. The baby remains unnamed until a week after his or her birth.
6. In Bali babies’ feet are not allowed to touch the ground
Hard to believe, but the truth is that newborns of Bali are not allowed to keep their feet on the ground or touch it for 105 days after the birth. They are rested on a sofa or mattress and constantly held up by relatives or the mother.
7. Tibetan banners
People in Tibet put up two kinds of banner on the side of their houses after a baby is born. One to ward off evil and the other to protect the child and attract good fortune. Well wishers gift the newborn and their parents stuff like clothing, yak-buttered tea, barley wine, meat and cheese to signify a great and rich life. The celebrations begin on the third day after a male baby is born and on the fourth day in case of a female.