My inner child and the angry girl
Note: I published this piece on Medium a year or two ago, so circumstances have evolved. Nevertheless, it was good to reflect on these thoughts once again!
Why Hello There, Child
I never realised that I had an inner child, until my psychologist (let’s call her Rita) guided me to her. Now some of you are already thinking, ‘what a quack’ or ‘what rubbish’, but do a search on Google. You’ll see that it’s a popular method used in psychotherapy.
My inner child was (is) a hot, screaming mess! Boy did she know how to whine, and she’s always scared and panicky. My chronic illnesses and the trauma I had to deal with over the years must have magnified her fears. She doesn’t handle stress well, and starts to shiver and go mental at the slightest hint of it. It’s never difficult to ‘tune in’ to her voice. She’s always there, mostly crying and whining about something. But there are those good days where she’s quiet and content, humming and minding her own business.
Oh and to You as Well, Little Miss Angry
Then I have this adolescent whom we call ‘the angry girl’. She’s the grumpy guardian of my inner child, and would question me, the adult, whenever I mixed things up for us. She didn’t appear loving at all, but guarded my inner child with a fierce passion. She lived to protect the innocent. Nobody was going to hurt my inner child, especially not me! She would question me, applying logic and fact to her arguments against my actions. But as Rita pointed out, “what logic?” It was often warped, and twisted to suit her in a fit of fear or anger.
Getting to Know Them Better
We spent many months working on the both of them. Befriending angry girl and gaining her trust wasn’t easy at all. My inner child was happy to tag along, as long as she got her cuddles and reassurances. It took a while before angry girl allowed me to approach my inner child without too much suspicion. I am happy to say that she’s been quieter of late. She spends her time stalking in the background, protecting both of us now.
Becoming Aware of the Power I Have Within Me
One surprising realisation that dawned on me, was that I was the adult, the one in charge. I had the power to make decisions for us all, and they had to listen to me at the end of the day. If angry girl thinks that she’s the logical one, I as the adult made more sense. If inner child is hysterical, I was the one who could soothe her. Angry girl would only scream at me and block my way, making everything worse as a result.
I am still a work in progress, and always will be. But I’m grateful to Rita for having brought my awareness to it. One thing that worried me however, was that I’d start to lose my grip on reality, and develop split personalities (pardon my ignorance, DID people). But she said that I was fine as I could differentiate between my selves with clarity.
What My Inner Child Represents
I would say that my inner child represents my true self, and she’s frightened down to her very toes. She has endured much suffering, while pain and expectations have broken her spirit. As a result, she’s fragile and lacking in confidence. Yet she is quick to put her trust in people again, and it doesn’t take much to keep her content. She’s friendly and happy when she isn’t in panic mode. She is like an innocent child in a field full of spring flowers, enraptured in wonder. When she’s well cared for, my entire being experiences a sense of calm.
Who’s the Angry Girl?
I’m not quite sure who angry girl is, perhaps a manifestation of my protective mechanism. One that may not be the most advanced technology, so to speak, but is still standing despite constant battering. Like a wooden shield up against solid metal maces. She’s not always right, but she manages to keep us alive somehow.
She analyses everything including emotions, and processes them too quickly. This creates a distance where I’m safe from feeling hurt. I find it difficult to feel for the sake of feeling, unless I’m watching or listening to something sad (then the tears come flowing)! (I’ll blame my inner child for this ;)) Affection and physical touch is the only way I know how to connect with others, without first judging the intent. Which can be warped, if you think about it.
I am the Sum of All My Parts
And as for myself? The adult me? She is the wise and sensible one, the firm voice who keeps the home intact. She is the key to empowerment, the true protector, the dignified woman. She tempers emotion and approaches logic with humanity. Above all, she is resilient.