Little me – one step towards facing trauma?

Yesterday night, after an exhausting afternoon that I spent crying, I felt the sudden urge to draw a picture of how I might have looked as a child. I don’t really know why I wanted to or where the urge came from, because I also still felt hollow and not in touch with myself at all.

Anyway, this is what I ended up with:

 

I think I must have looked kind of like that. It looks vaguely like the pictures of me that I know.

It’s the first time I have wanted to focus some attention on myself as a child. I usually feel this great big reluctance to think about my younger self. Now I wonder if maybe that was the reason behind my emotional numbness yesterday. I didn’t feel much of anything, so maybe that was what enabled me to go and think of myself as a child. It might have been one tiny step down to my basement of demons – getting an idea of who I was. But maybe at the same time putting some distance between myself and “this child”. Putting her out there, on the paper. Not me. Nothing inside of myself.

Today I’m still sort of unfeeling, but when I look at the picture I feel a bit sad and sorry. The kid looks sad. Apprehensive. Tense. Like she doesn’t understand what goes on. When I look at it, I don’t even want to think of how long she still has to wait, still has to hold on and bear up against life until she finally finds her family. But I guess I will have to think about those things. Somehow.

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7 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. vwoopvwoop
    Nov 10, 2012 @ 00:39:16

    this is a great therapeutic exercise. my sister did something similar on a whim the other week, and actually around the picture of her inner child that she drew, she wrote all the words she could think of that the child thought about and felt. i wonder if maybe that would be something you could try? i know that for me personally, the dissociation i experience is so extreme that i can’t connect to my child-self and understand or feel what she feels, which is frustrating (partly because i hate that my sister can do it and i can’t). do you think you could?

    • Lola
      Nov 10, 2012 @ 10:01:48

      Writing what the child thinks and how it feels around the drawing, yes, I could try that. I think I could connect, if probably in an emotionally detached way. I think it’s some form of dissociation, too, like dissociationg from my own feelings now, including my feelings about myself as a child, only focusing on that like it were someone else I’m thinking about. So that even when I feel something, it doesn’t feel like the feeling concerns me, personally. Does that even make sense?

  2. wellcallmecrazy
    Nov 10, 2012 @ 01:55:01

    You are a wonderful artist!

    • Lola
      Nov 10, 2012 @ 10:05:49

      Even when it’s hard to accept the compliment without pointing out the thousand things that I think are bad about my drawing, I’ll just say thank you for the kind words. 🙂

  3. Sparrow
    Nov 11, 2012 @ 08:59:03

    I write down conversations I have with my inner child: I ask her how she feels and respond to her concerns the way a responsible, caring adult would. It’s been a great way to acknowledge my needs, and to nurture my adult side as well. Re-parenting myself. I found the technique in The Journey from Abandonment to Healing, by Susan Anderson.

    • Lola
      Nov 11, 2012 @ 11:46:56

      Wow, I think it’s awesome that you are able to write down conversations with your inner child and assume the role of a nurturing adult for your inner child. I’m not able to get into any kind of dynamic interaction with my younger self yet, but I hope I’ll get there eventually. It sounds like a helpful technique. Do you find it emotionally challenging or exhausting to do it?

      • Sparrow
        Nov 11, 2012 @ 23:50:11

        It can get very repetitive, and so I don’t do it as often as before. I used to do it daily, now only if I feel a bit in crisis. The hardest part is getting around to it. I thought it would be more challenging, but once I assume those roles, it seems to just come out naturally. At the end I feel good, like I’ve been heard, and like someone is looking out for me.

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