Inner peace comes with making space for uncomfortable feelings, which is a deepening process of…
How to release emotional wounds from your childhood
You release emotional wounds from your childhood by listening, empathizing, being receptive and ultimately holding space for your innocence. Then the wounds can settle into the safe embrace of your welcoming presence.
Childhood wounds do not seek catharsis or penance, revenge, or resolve. The wounds only seek love and care.
I wrote a poem about my inner child, moved by its need to be seen and heard. The poem served as a soothing balm for underlying sorrow, hurt and fear and a way back to love.
When I was a girl …
life was not so innocent as many people
describe their childhoods.
“Oh, if only I could be a child once more,”
I hear people say.
A parable to be told.
A fairy tale, I’m sure.
My beginnings were tumultuous and unsettling.
To buffer the turmoil, I remember humming from
deep within my diaphragm – the sound of a loud
engine roaring through me in rhythmic waves
against the storm.
Words like, “I’ll give you something to cry about,”
seemed normal then.
A smashed guitar or silence, and utter confusion
burrowed into and through my defences.
I had no defences.
“Where are we going?
I hummed louder.
It drove my grandfather crazy.
I still hummed.
And, one day I stopped.
Maybe it was when I learned songs,
or when I no longer needed
to diffuse discordant energy.
Instead, I discovered poetry.
I found friendships, beauty, and a place to settle
my soul in a lifelong relationship with sorrow, hurt,
fear, courage, forgiveness, love and faith.
I came to know that happiness is everywhere –
in the sound of rain, the touch of a hand, generosity,
and all the nuances of being human – the joys,
upsets, struggles, and small pleasures.
And I accepted that nothing is ever perfect
or safe. Instead, everything is always evolving
and becoming whole.
Cultivating an intimate relationship with your inner child returns you to wholeness.
Something precious occurs when you listen to the inner child – it reminds you of simple pleasures. It creates balance in your life, helping you realize that you are more than a protector and provider. You don’t have to hold it all together. You can be vulnerable and open to the beauty of your need for love and happiness.
In this way, you reclaim the joyous and innocent qualities of being a child and tap into its innate intelligence. You become receptive to your needs, yearnings, hopes and dreams.
In my book Mystical Intimacy, Masiandia explains that children are brilliant, able to intuitively draw vast amounts of information from spoken words and nonverbal body language, and especially the energy field of their families, friends and society. They have a highly attuned connection to their inner knowing. Thus, they witness far more than is apparent.
So, by nurturing the inner child, you naturally become highly attuned to your instinctive and intuitive awareness.
Returning home to yourself
I empathize with how challenging it is to nurture the inner child and truly return home to ourselves, as so many of us have become identified by our parent’s unconscious behaviour and beliefs. Like our parents and their parents, we also learned to override aspects of our neglected inner child.
In the book Reconciliation, Healing the Inner Child, Thich Nhat Hanh describes how we tend to run away from the wounded child because we are afraid of suffering. The wounded child seeks our love, but we reject it because the pain and sorrow feel overwhelming. The child needs us to return home to us, and yet we turn away. However, “when we become aware that we’ve forgotten the wounded child in ourselves, we feel great compassion for that child.”
I particularly like Hanh’s acknowledgment that our wounded child may represent not only our current timeline but also several generations. “Perhaps our parents weren’t able to look after the wounded child in themselves. So when we’re embracing the wounded child in us, we’re embracing all the wounded children of our past generations. This practice is not for ourselves alone, but for numberless generations of ancestors and descendants.”
“Our past no longer exists as something ‘behind us that we can ‘go back to,'” explains Michael Brown, the author of The Presence Process. “The past is past. However, these unintegrated emotional charges continue to exist as energetic conditions imprinted within our emotional body. Essentially, we aren’t ‘going back’ but ‘going in.’ The answers are all within us now.”
A Beautiful Shift in Consciousness
I’m particularly interested in this topic because the collective consciousness is undergoing a profound healing shift during this age of chaos that requires being attentive to the inner child’s needs and ultimately turning inwards for guidance and purpose in life.
Masiandia, “The healing shift is a long and slow journey of unlearning survival mechanisms and exploring a richer and more fulfilling relationship with yourself and life.”
“Now more than ever is a time to commit to your self-worth, nurture yourself, and surround yourself with mutually supportive relationships. Do not let yourself be defined by other people’s judgements or unconscious behaviour. See beyond their actions and choose love.”
“During times of chaos, it is natural that uncertainty and insecurity play a prominent role in people’s lives. Please try not to reject these experiences and feelings. Let fear, hurt, resentment, anxiety, depression, and sorrow come to the surface of your awareness. Try not to disassociate or avoid the pain. Instead, let your heart know how to love.”
“We cannot say enough that this age of chaos is a time to cultivate intimacy with yourself.”
“Reaching out to others for gratification, approval, or belonging is no longer available. It’s unattainable. You cannot live outside of your vibrational field anymore without feeling like something is wrong or becoming ill.”
“Now is a time to seek within for meaning.”
“Everything is changing so rapidly that answers cannot be found externally. All outer relationships, circumstances and opportunities now require utmost devotion to your own sense of value with self-care and self-respect. Without this commitment to yourself, your life is a mess, contributing to the chaos of the world instead of creating harmony.”
“Let harmony be your mantra. Affirm to yourself, “I am only here to live in harmony, to love and be loved. I am not here to fight, reject or be rejected. I am not here to defend, complain or attack. I am here to witness without judgment, especially when my evaluating mind needs compassion. I am a generous purveyor of empathy.”
“Our dear friend, let love be your only commitment. We assure you that life will reflect your generosity, and this generosity will then nourish the cells of your body.”
“Tending to your inner innocence nourishes your body, mind and soul.”
“Please relinquish the belief that caring for your inner child is synonymous with rescuing a wounded child. Rescuing, fixing, and resolving have their place; however, not if they’re yet another way of overriding the implicit needs of the inner child.”
“These needs may be buried beneath oppression, trauma and shame. However, only seeing the child as wounded obscures the joyous beauty it offers you and the sweetness you can provide. The inner child is a presence that guides you to uncover and nurture your needs. This is a blessing, not a distress to overcome.”
“Please understand that when you help yourself; when you pick yourself up; when you nurture the inner child, you enter into resonance with what you need, and life joins you.”
Your innocence is a needed expression
You need not leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. You need not even listen, simply wait, just learn to become quiet, still, and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked. It has no choice; it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.
– Franz Kafka
Honouring your inner innocence is a practice of doing less, listening in, and being open to what arises. It’s a devotional practice of self-inquiry and of being kind towards yourself.
Innocence is not confined to the oppressive bindings of the inner parent or societal norms. We didn’t incarnate to be bound by the collective definitions of reality. We were born to express our truth, live close to our hearts and be free to love and trust fiercely.
What is your relationship with your inner child? Do you trust your need for love? Do you pay attention to your need for creative expression and play? Do you make space for your intense emotions in a way that mom, dad, extended family and school teachers did not do for you? Are you honest, empathic and soothing toward yourself?
I hope and pray that you can be very receptive to your innocence and cultivate self-acceptance and self-care.
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This Post Has One Comment
Thank you for this Linda – this blog pairs well with a book I’m reading ‘It Didn’t Start With You’ ….. and quiet time I’m taking as I nurse a cold and sit, read and listen in to what arises.