Mayyim Hayyim is a mikveh - a ritual bath - and much more. We hope you'll find our website to be full of fascinating information, insights, and surprises. We look forward to hearing from you.

Open Waters: Mikveh for Everybody

This documentary film celebrates the principle of petichut, Hebrew for "openness" and "inclusivity" by making mikveh accessible for everyone.

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Drawn to Transitions

by Lisa Berman

Lisa Berman, Mikveh and Education Director

When I have occasion to mention to people that I work at a mikveh and also happen to be a birth doula (a trained labor and childbirth support person), some of them chuckle and say, “You certainly are drawn to individuals in transition.” And they’re right. I am someone who, in the face of others’ emotions, feels a sense of calm strength; my senses are heightened and I feel eminently present and ready to serve and support.

Last Sunday morning at 4:00am I received The Call from my most recent doula client. I drove alongside the sunrise to meet her at the hospital. Less than five hours after our arrival, a beautiful baby girl made the ultimate transition from womb to world. During those five hours of labor, mom-to-be Andi was never alone. She and her husband’s silhouettes could be seen down the long hall, walking slowly, pausing often. They would return to her room and now as a trio we would confer and stretch, stroke and breathe. A nurse would join the gathering, saying “Slow, slow” and we would all inhale deeply in unison. As the intensity of the journey grew, so would our numbers, with Andi surrounded by midwife, doula, nurse and husband. And yet, as the gathering grew, Andi’s visible connection to us diminished as she withdrew into her own world to manage the powerful experience, eyes closed, arms stretched out to clasp the nearest helper. Read more