Embrace your sacred Inner Child
Updated: May 25, 2020
“The cry we hear from deep in our hearts comes from the wounded child within.” - Thich Nhat Hanh
Do you know? Lot of times, when we feel powerless, shameful, anger, fear, confused, and loneness, it is a call from our wounded inner child who is screaming for help and attention.
Who is that Inner Child?
As a child growing up, we were naturally innocent, playful, simple and straightforward with lots of vital life energy. We have also been experiencing life in many different situations and we were told what to do, what not to do, what mistakes we made, what things we could do better, how good or awful we look or talk, etc.,
Like a piece of blank paper, we religiously took in any comments and critics from the outside and believed that is who we are. Out of survival instinct, we also have learned to repress our feelings of confusion, anger, sadness or even joy in order to feel safe or “normal”. Then every time when we repressed or ignored our true feelings or emotions, this part of us got pushed back or stuck as if it’s frozen in its own time and space, remaining as a wounded child within us. This part of us doesn’t really disappear or freeze as much as we wish it could, whenever there’s a situation in life with similar dynamic would trigger repressed emotions.
Over time, we wonder, what is this mysterious energy driving our emotions and behaviors? Why we are attached to the same type of people over and over again? Why do I often feel so helpless, lonely, disconnected, fearful, angry, shameful, etc?
Many of us attempt to comfort and smooth out our feelings of loneness and fear by getting into relationships with others, especially intimate relationships. We try really hard to fill up the emptiness inside of us with the energy of others.
At the beginning of an intimate relationships, being loved and attended by the partner seems cured our pain. For a while, we thought: it worked! What really happens here is, in a way, we have given out our inner child to another person to take care of. Sooner or later, we become dependent on our partner for love and security, we start to take energy from him or her. This dependence then leads to conflicts and power game between the two, which creates the separation. At the end, both of us feel even lonelier than before.
On an unconscious level, trying to get love and fulfillment from relationships means we believe the solutions to our pain, fear or loneness is not something ourselves can handle. If we start a relationship with this kind of mindset, we are looking for someone else to be responsible for our pain and easily we see ourselves as victims. It is giving out our own power when we need the others to fill up our emptiness.
Can a wounded Inner Child be healed?
Absolutely YES! A wounded inner child can be healed and become whole again if we tend them with love and compassion. As the book The Dance of Wounded Souls, the author says "It is necessary to own and honor the child who we were in order to Love the person we are. And the only way to do that is to own that child's experiences, honor that child's feelings, and release the emotional grief energy that we are still carrying around."
Like a child who got hurt when she tripped by a rock. Instead of focusing on blaming the rock being in the way, or criticizing the child not paying enough attention, we bring our full attention to the wounding and the healing without any judgements. Blaming or criticizing the child for not being careful or repressing the hurt by telling the child to be stronger is simply not an organic process that supports the child's growth.
Instead, with love and compassion, we take actions to treat the wounding and acknowledge the hurt feelings the child is experiencing. By doing so, the child knows her hurt is being honored and accepted the way it is, which makes her feel safe and loved again. By staying authentic with the hurt and the feelings associated with the hurt is indeed the first step towards healing. Once the healing takes place, the valuable learning follows, and the child re-gains the strength to move forward without any strings holding her back.
From Surviving to Thriving - You are holding the key.
I’ve worked with many clients who came in with that deeply wounded inner child who was angry, sad, confused and lost. By gently revisiting the inner child with genuine love and compassion and bringing deeper understanding and acceptance to the previous dynamics just the way it is, the clients could be able to re-connect to this vital part of them and allow the healing and integration take place. The healed inner child normally brings back a sense of completion and wholeness, as well as vital energy and life essence to the self.
My own person experience with my inner child might give you an idea of how it feels like to have when an inner child is somehow healed and integrated.
Had been sent away to live with relatives twice in my early infancy and childhood, I had never gained any connection with my parents either physically or emotionally. Thought I had made lots of progress in life on my own, there was always a part of me that felt unsafe, worthless and not needed. Like a child who had lost her home, unconsciously I had been searching and collecting material things or relationships that I thought would make me feel safe or wanted. Though none of the strategies had worked for me. As a matter of fact, the more external stuff and "friends" I'd collected for myself, the more confused and empty I'd felt inside. At one point in my life, I was in deep despair and thought I'd never be happy again.
Thanks to a miraculous spiritual awakening experience occurred in my darkest time, I was guided to begin my journeys for self-exploration and healing. I started entering a brand new world that I never thought its existence before.
Sometimes I felt I’ve got so close to my goal after getting done so much work on myself; but then, some life situations would reveal to me that there was still a part of me that felt small and hurt with a tendency to withdraw. I learned it's my inner child who's reacting with the old pain. Sometimes, I just felt greatly discouraged, not knowing whether or not if my inner child would be healed or how much more work is needed, I just have kept working on myself through several different healing modalities.
Then one day, when I got a chance to visit my parents for two weeks, something miraculous happened. Time flew by quickly as we spent lots of times together even travelling places. Towards the end of the trip, all of sudden I became aware of a huge shift that had occurred in my own inner space, which was, I felt calm and relaxed towards my parents like never before. Not only I felt strangely comfortable to share the same physical space all the time, I also genuinely made great efforts to do things to take care of them just in the same way I take care of my own son. My parents seemed a lot more open and receptive at the same time that was a quite shocking too.
When I was reflecting the time we spent together and how the relationship had changed in this wonderful way, I then noticed not even once my “wounded child” had showed up with a sense of anger, sadness, shame and insecure. All I have experienced was some pure love and care coming out of my heart towards my parents no matter what they were saying or doing. I know, this cannot happen from a place of a wounded child. Energetically, I felt more spacious and solid, and I know, my inner child had finally found her way home. This gives me tremendous confidence to continue the work I’m doing now.
Healing is a life long journey and growth is always just around the corner, as long as we keep going.