After years and years of studying psychology and counselling, reading about theories and participating in group discussion as well as partaking in my own therapy – on a blustery sunny Saturday afternoon pottering around the house, I found my inner child!
It actually seems like a mini miracle, a light-bulb moment!
I have never understood the inner child, when I read article and chapters I felt like they were asking me to believe in gremlins. When I listened to others talk about their inner child being allowed to cry, make mess, feeling lonely – I felt detached. As a child I was very tidy, I colour-coded everything I could and felt comfortable in a small support network, even during a massive breach of that network I felt the other members pull round and keep me safe. So no mess, no loneliness and no child-like confusion. I haven’t changed; I am creative but tidy and logical, so where was my inner child?
I continued to read and listen to others, so as a therapist I could help others access their ‘inner child’ but I never felt wholly comfortable.
This afternoon I remembered being 11 and thinking things were changing, I was beginning to realise that there was no witch in my toy cupboard and the monster in the neighbour’s tree seemed to have disappeared. I made a promise to myself that I would never forget what it was like to believe, to pretend and have that sense of wonder in dreams and creation. There is my inner child – she is tidy and loves crayons, she doesn’t like arguments and tries to remain in control, but she also believes in dreams, in making a difference, in the ‘witch in the toy cupboard’. It is partly because I can visualise these dreams and monsters that I can connect with clients, especially children for whom these visualisations are very real. Battling with monsters and helping dreams flourish is part of my job. It doesn’t sound very scientific but for many people it is easier to understand than the atom.