Some time ago I received an intriguing invitation: making a death mask for Samhain with a small group! I didn't have to think long and decided I'd definitely want to be there. So last Saturday it was time! Unfortunately one of the women wasn't feeling well, so we ended up being with 6 'wyld & wicked women'! ;-) Some had met each other before. I only knew the hostess beforehand, so I had the privilege to get to know 4 wonderful women.
We made the masks in pairs. To protect our skin and to make the mask easier to release we covered our face with a lot of cream. I had a nasty cold, so I was a bit nervous whether I could persevere the plaster. I decided to put some straws in my mouth, so I had both nose and mouth to breathe. Still, it wasn't easy! I started thinking a lot of "what-ifs". That wasn't going to help me persist so I went into a meditative state and that was the right decision. I did it!
Then it was my turn to make a mask. I soon felt I was very tired and the cold didn't make it any easier. I wanted to finish the mask, so I kept on putting plaster bandages. I struggled. I realized it wasn't working and felt so bad... Finally I asked someone else to take over. That was so hard, I felt I had failed miserably. In the kitchen I cried, but everyone was so kind and comforting! My mask partner got a beautiful mask nevertheless and she wasn't disappointed (as I had feared). On the contrary, she accepted her own lesson in this with grace; we talked it over and hugged.
Afterwards we all talked about what making the masks had done with us. Generally speaking death-masks are made after a person dies. Look here for examples. To do it on a living person can feel strange, especially when the eyes and mouth are covered. You literally shut them up...
Meanwhile, it was very late so we set up the beds and dived in! Unfortunately one of the women had to go home. I slept next to the veils in Ons Ding. In the morning we had a long breakfast / brunch, closed the circle and then we said our goodbyes. Thank you for everything, lovely ladies!