The emotional wounds of our children, the children we were and the ones we still are, live in our bodies. We do not outgrow their issues until we allow ourselves to revisit them, to touch in to their feelings and begin the process of releasing. As we attempt to keep their struggles separate from our lives, we compromise our own creativity and spontaneity, depriving ourselves of their youthful brilliance.
The yogis and ancient sages teach us about samskara, the unresolved energetic experiences that live as energetic cysts in our bodies. In the body-mind paradigm of yoga, we learn that life brings to us the appropriate triggers, the perfect people, places and things, to begin releasing the samskara. The gifts of this practice are many; more internal spaciousness, freedom from the past, and a renewed sense of energy and flow, to name a few. Yoga on and off the mat both activate and integrate the samskara, as do different therapeutic systems.
Pema Chordin, the wondrous Buddhist nun, talks of “befriending” our different selves. How might we use this concept to connect to our wounded children? Here is a practice of befriending our inner children. Is there anything here for you to practice? Just consider:
Sit quietly, releasing distractions from your environment. Soften into your breath, as your eyes relax, drawing your gaze inside. Spend a few moments in contemplation, listening to the sound of your inhale, the whisper of your exhale. Be slow, be gentle with yourself.
As you are ready, imagine the child that you were. See her, see him, right in front of you. How old is this dear child? What is she or he wearing? What’s happening in her world? As you sit with her, with him, let each breath relax you and soften you into this child’s world. When you feel readied, here are some questions to consider–
- How was this child most hurt? Consider and contemplate. Watch with radical compassion.
- Imagine you could become this child and channel her words. Become her. Speak, write, or consider the words of her or his hurt.
- And now, as an adult, from this vantage point of healing, speak directly to this little one. What words of wisdom, comfort, or hope can you offer her? What do you want her to know?
What is something you could do together, something fun, today, just for today, with this essence of internal playfulness? There are many ways to continue mindful relationship with this child, if that draws you—writing to one another or having a consistent playdate are just two.
Dear Readers, let’s move forward into this spring with intentionality and compassion for our own journey. Please, as always, keep me posted—has anything touched you in this welcome letter and blog? I am email@example.com.