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Water: A Prayer/Mikveh Ritual for an IVF Miscarriage

black and white photo of woman with eyes closed underwater bubbles around her mouth

“The embryo is considered to be mere water until the fortieth day.”
—Babylonian Talmud, Yevamot 69b

There is nothing “mere” about water. 
We couldn’t see the embryo,
but we saw water enter my womb,
carrying a cluster of cells, hopes, and DNA,
a Divine Spark soaked in darkness. 

There is nothing mere about water. 
Blood tests, urine tests,
numbers and letters coded in liquid.
We treaded water in the rising tide
until it spilled over, spelling “loss.” 

The nurse brought me ice chips in the hospital,
my gown drowned in feverish sweat,
as my body released “mere water.”
There was nothing mere.
There was so much more.

First immersion

El Malei Rakhamim,
God, Saturated in Womb-Love,
I am drowning, I am drenched
I am a torrential downpour
I am made of tears

Divine Mother, 
Dissolve me in Your mikveh
Cradle me in Your waters
Diffuse me, cell by cell,
until I am once again One
with the Womb of the World

Second immersion

Shekhinah, bless my womb 
with waters that grow
A Divine Spark whose glow
floods the darkness 

Sing me to shore,
a wave on Your waters
Returning, rebirthing,
emerging whole 
There is nothing “mere”
about water

Third immersion

Blessed are You, Source of Life,
God of Hannah, Sarah, Rachel, and Rebecca,
Who cleanses, heals and renews us in living, breathing waters 

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