From the moment I began the descent through my mother's portal into the realm of the living—there was a disconnection. Birthed from a teenage mother who had no concept of what it meant to nurture her own inner needs and a father whose presence was sporadic and then non-existent the first year of my life and well into adulthood—one can see clearly where the foundation of my healthy sense of self begin to disintegrate. When a child is born unto parents who are not yet ready to receive to them, the ability to parent in a way that is supportive and innerstanding of that child’s emotional needs suffers greatly; for one cannot build upon a foundation that was eroding and unstable to begin with. These wounds of rejection, abandonment and insecurity do not fade as we transition through the stages from adolescence to adulthood. They exist in a place locked deep within—kicking and scratching at our insides—wailing like banshees to be acknowledged.
Oh, how I ignored the howling of this loss sense of self—this ghost haunting every aspect of my being—just wanting to be felt. But how could I be appeasing when the only example I had was a mother who provided for me financially, but was emotionally distant and repressed my self-expression. “Be seen, not heard.” This was the creed embedded into my young soul whenever I attempted to voice my emotions—whatever they were. The bond between mother and daughter was never quite established and I learned at a young age that it wasn’t safe to BE. So instead of flourishing into womanhood self-aware and unafraid of using my voice—my throat chakra retracted and fear just about swallowed me whole whenever I tried to communicate what I was feeling.
It’s amazing how one damaging blow to the emotional body can cause a rippling effect that rocks every area of your life. The absence of a father—the one relationship that sets the tone for every man you will ever cross paths with—when fractured—leads to a string of relationships that project even more pain onto the already damaged spirit. I had no sense of trust or idea of what it meant to be in a healthy relationship with the opposite sex. My young eyes had only witnessed the coming of various male figures, but never staying—never any longevity. So I mimicked these patterns from the moment I experienced my first real attraction—giving very little of my true self—because there was no assurance they’d be around to pick up the pieces of whatever part of myself I laid down.
So one drifts through life—oblivious to the concept that an inner child even exists. The Child is pleading, screaming, acting out through your unexpressed rage and hurt. Resistance to moving forward into unknown territory, inability to follow through, fear of letting anyone get too close—these are all the workings of an inner self that has no other outlet—so it expresses itself the only way it knows how. It doesn’t care about the inconvenience you experience or the causalities it leaves in its wake—corpses of failed relationships and endeavors that litter your path like some war ravaged ghost town. It wants to be felt and will achieve this by any means necessary.
Spiritual awakening and a deep, penetrating torture that I didn’t have the strength to keep enduring was what finally made me tune into this abandoned self. A session with an intuitive healer revealed a three year old me having a violent fit; screaming, rolling around on the floor, and trying desperately to escape the stone box that I had unknowingly stuffed her down into. The expression on my healer’s face when she described the agony that this little girl has been experiencing all these years pierced a hole right through my heart—and the tears began to flow and they wouldn’t stop. I didn’t realize that my inattention to the small things She accomplished; my impatience when She was angry, irritable, or just wanted to chatter on about the insignificant; my judgement when she wandered out side of the stone box of perfection that I had built for her and made a mistake—these were all reenactments of patterns I had learned from the woman who birthed me.
This revelation—although disturbing—brought me to a place of deep innerstanding concerning the abuse that I had been inflicting upon this light-filled child who just wanted to be seen and loved and heard and I finally began the journey of reconciliation. I journeyed through each stage of life with Her—from the moment she entered the womb to the moment that she began to become aware of everything that surrounded her—and allowed Her to feel all that she was denied. I let her express the pain of feeling alone and misunderstood by the family she thought would love Her unconditionally. I let Her express the inadequacy she felt of being punished for not doing well in school due to symptoms of a ADD (attention deficient disorder)—a condition that She went through life not even knowing that She had. All that had plagued Her begin to rise up through me in fits of depression, fury, and despair—and I gave her permission to feel it all.
Through this allowance to FEEL—we have begun to build a relationship based on trust, openness, acceptance, and compassion. I find that emotions come up in different stages—from the three year old me to the seven year old me—and I give them all the space to be. I tune in and listen to what brings them joy—and then I act on it through playing out in nature, creating art, or simply scribbling in my journal about the happenings of the day. Whatever it is the Child enjoyed doing during at that age—I allow Her to indulge.
She and I—we are reflections of one another.
Every time I heal a neglected part of me—She becomes freer.
So I journey within, again and again—cradling Her in my arms and rocking her back and forth when She is scared, lonely, or simply in need of my time and attention.
As I nurture my dreams and all the things that I am passionate about—I nurture Her.
And because of my courage to face, once and for all, the hidden aspects of myself that were in pain—I can finally be to Her the parent that I’ve always needed.
Akasha Oshun is a traveling freelance writer and blogger hailing from the “Windy City” of Chicago. She’s a hedonistic Goddess and holistic health enthusiast who’s passionate about educating women and young girls on how to be more connected to mind, body, and spirit and hopes to be a catalyst for helping others transform every area of their life and be their most authentic self.