As I am writing this, my niece is about to be born.
Okay, yes, she is my second niece, and also, yes, she isn't really my niece.
It's technically my 'adoptive' sister's second daughter. It doesn't make it any less exciting to me, though. Also, I'm technically writing this piece a few days ahead of pasting it because I'm having some weird health issues this week and I like to stay on track. I'm posting this piece today because I am hoping they don't have to wait until next week to induce. If I am lucky, Ximena will be born today, on All Soul's Day, because it is a special day, a beautiful day. It is a day of remembrance, a day that connects us to our past.
A lot of people feel that our pasts way us down, but I'm a big believer in honoring where you come from, even the less pleasant parts, because they help you know where you're going. Trust me, my past ain't no picnic, but even I can find and pick out the good parts from a distance, and if I can, then I have hope for everyone. The good parts are still back there, and they are good. And the bad parts? They are parts I survived, and that makes me strong.
All of it is part of me, and I am comfortable enough in my own skin to be grateful to all those who made me, those who came before. Every year, on this day, I try to honor that, and to honor the memory of those loved and loathed and lost, but who still live here, in every breath and heartbeat. For that reason, I'd like to think of little Ximena coming into the world on a day where the wall between the past and the present is thinnest, a time when we honor our ancestors as we look toward the coming year.
But whether she is born today or not, I've been thinking about her and my sister Erica, particularly as I've been sampling our sixth and final Primordial Scent Project: Air Set offering, Naked Leaf Perfumes First Breath by perfumer Suzy Larsen.
In honor of midwifery, First Breath is a liquid prayer to empower when you need an unshakable inner strength and resilience--whether beginning new projects and challenges or birthing new ideas. The mysterious and sensual First Breath is clean, fresh, expansive, innocent and green while being a little sweet and comforting. It's your own midwife in a bottle giving you courage to take that first tentative step in a new direction. Let your inner sage-femme (midwife) guide you.Lime, lavender, and bergamot are strong in the opening, which is very green and a little sharp. Ten minutes I start to get some rose and some of the patchouli base. I like rose/patchouli combinations, and the green and citrus notes lighten and compliment the combo, adding a pretty and, yes, innocent quality to a combination that I usually find earthy or sexy or dirty.
First Breath is an AIR element-inspired perfumer for Perfume Pharmer's 2012 Perfume Project: 'Primordial Scent'.
Notes: Sage, Lime, Lavender, Amroise, Bergamot, Clementine, Red Mandarin, Green Pepper, Rose Bulgarian, Rose Anatolian, Neroli, Lavender absolute, Black Current Bud absolute, Jasmine grandiflorum, Clary Sage, Fir Balsam absolute, Vanilla, Vetiver, Patchouli, Oakmoss, Benzoin and Hyrax in organic grape alcohol.
This is a pretty scent. A gentle scent. It doesn't have much of a 'skin' quality, or I'd say it was the air of newborn baby skin. This is not the brutal, bloody reality of birth, but the light, fuzzy bliss-fill memory of those first moments, where all you remember of a difficult new beginning is how it was all worth it in the end.
And to Erica and Ximena, and all lucky soon-to-be-moms and their almost-people, may your memories be as pretty as this scent.
You can buy First Breath for $50.00 for a 5ml parfum extrait direct from the perfumer. Samples are also available for $5.00.
You can buy the entire Primordial Scent Project: Air Set for $28.00 here.
For more reviews of the Primordial Scent Project: Air Scents, try: Perfume-Smellin' Things; The Perfume Critic; John Reasinger, writing for Perfume Pharmer; Indieperfumes; Donna Hathaway, writing for Perfumer Pharmer.
Can you fix this? It's a broken heart.
It was fine, but it just fell apart.
It was mine, but now I give it to you,
Cause you can fix it, you know what to do.
Let your love cover me,
Like a pair of angel wings,
You are my family,
You are my family.
~ "Family," Dar Williams