Chinese traditions: Ritual for 5-day-old newborn

baby's little foot

In July 2014, my husband and I are in Austria. When our son turns 5 days old, my Chinese mother-in-law (who’s living in China) asks my husband to perform a ritual:

My husband takes a blanket with both his hands and covers the door of our bedroom with it for a few seconds. He then does the same with the window. After that, he puts the blanket over our son for a second. That’s it!

When he’s done, I ask him about the meaning of the ritual. My husband doesn’t know, so we ask my mother-in-law. She tells us that this ritual should help keep illnesses out and away from our son.

Have you ever heard of this ritual? What are your thoughts on it?

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Hi, I'm Ruth, welcome to China Elevator Stories! I have been living in Kunming and Shenzhen in the past and am now staying in Northeast China with my Chinese husband and our baby and toddler son. Join us on our journey bridging worlds!


  1. Haven’t heard of this one either. My mother-in-law did a ritual recently to try and prevent my son from crying at night. I’m not sure I really believe in that kind of stuff, but if she wants to try, I don’t mind.

  2. robert

    I guess we all have our rituals that help us feel better. Live and let live, as long as nobody gets hurt.

    Also, great photo!

  3. I haven’t heard of the ritual. I heard of gifting the baby with jade and gold so he will be more calmer, I believe. In my family, we might use a pin or something to keep the evil eye away from the baby.

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