There is a lil one inside of us, actually several lil ones if a person is constantly engaged in doing unfamiliar or new activities - a new lil one is born in our psyche in the process of doing the new activity who finds ways to maneuver through the new activity/inquiry, and each of these new ones, just like children we see around us, grow in their own time depending on how much the activity has been continued to be engaged in and the child grows up to be a fully grown adult adept at that activity. That is how we unconsciously become more skilled if we continuously spend time engaged in an activity of interest, and over time our 'expertise' in these activities join up with our existing expertise and form interesting combinations of skills hitherto far unthinkable, and that is how we become cameleonic (who says that is only a bad trait?!) and able to adapt with changing challenges - the ability, of course, depending on what you have spent time in developing routinely.
Inner child?! How do we know there is an 'inner child' within? Butterflies in the stomach, anxiety of any kind that is either always there or comes about at different points of time during the day or at specific instances of experience through life, overwhelm of any kind about anything, 'I don't know what to do' panic, pure innocent glee about anything, 'I feel like I want a cuddle,' 'I wish I had someone to rely on or hold onto,' curiosity (that is a pure lil one trait; people die or get old if curiosity is not a part of their constitution!) - if you have any of these above symptoms, you have a lil one inside you that definitely needs and deserves to be taken care of. Actually, you should be concerned if you don't have one or more of these symptoms because these symptoms are a great sign that you are alive and are playing the game of life. If you don't have any of these above-said symptoms, you should definitely do an unfamiliar activity or take up an activity that you have never done before (updated on 3-June-17: Maybe learn a new language or learn a musical instrument or try growing a plant in a pot or learn to cook or try rock-climbing!), and you can be sure to get back into the zone of living (as against merely surviving) with at least some of the zing/excitement of living back, and the zeal of living is soon on its heel (I bet on this)...and what's more, your side of the lawn would get greener again (I bet on this one too!).
The idea is not mine originally. It is the idea of Pamela Levin who takes special interest in Transactional Analysis and published the idea of Cycles of Development. The following images are excerpts from her work as interpreted by other psychotherapists.
So, how do we take care of these lil ones within us? Just like any baby would be. They love mushy food, fine gooey textured, not too spicey. It could be a nice smoothie or plain pongal or khichdi or curd rice or that bucket of icecream when things get a little too much to handle (this one is a popular with homemakers or had-it-up-to-the-neck mothers, but you need to make sure you have a wide selection of comfort-foods and not just icecream or we are talking about putting on weight, and putting on weight is a popular stressor, so make sure icecream is NOT your only comfort-food), or maybe dal with rice and curd nicely mashed (that's MY comfort food). Oh! Your favourite comfort-food is most likely to be inner-baby comforting food, because what gets comforted is that aspect of us that has us feel anxious and clamped up when faced with unknowns and daunting whatevers out there in the world. You could do one or all of the following:
1. Mushy, gooey food. Smoothies, curd rice, pongal, khichdi, dal curry and rice with curd, icecream, porridge, any of your favorite comfort-foods; just make sure you have more than one comfort-food to fall back on when the going gets a bit choppy. Better still, include one of the inner-child care food as part of your daily eating habit so you are taking care of your inner-child every day. You are bound to be surprised at how much the quality of your life would enhance.
2. Placing one palm of either hand on the navel (yes, your belly button) like you would place a hand on your pet puppy and feel it breathing, i.e. place a palm gently, kindly, mindfully on your belly button and feel the warmth of your abdomen as you breathe; this helps a lot in calming the anxious/flustered/overwhelmed feeling. A lott of the times, it also helps regulate constipation and/or loose motion (try it!).
3. A nice warm oil massage. Ayurveda recommends the practice of Abhyangam, which is self-oil massage with sesame oil followed by warm water bath (don't require soap after) with all joints and crevices nicely massaged. Try it. Your skin is most likely to feel plump and well taken care of and your emotional state a kinda fullness that can be akin to 'rich' and comfortable. The term 'comfortable in your skin' has a literal meaning with this practice. I suspect the phrase 'elbow grease' (as in, work that pays for elbow grease) must have some origin in a practice such as a massage.
That's it for now. Will add to this post as new inspiration floods in richer content. Until then, take care of your inner-child. I dare say, that is quite enough to suffice having taken care of yourself for our inner-child (or children) are our most vulnerable parts of us that we don't dare reveal to another and perhaps the only parts of us that actually gets hurt or saddened or happy. Our inner-child is very close to our true selves - the part that we won't easily expose to another but which needs our greatest care for it is our selves; it is our self, or at least leads us to our Self.
Dripples (drops n' ripples) attempts to invite a relook at our current definitions, what we know and don't know, of our selves, at health and of life itself, and perhaps have a perspective that is new.