I’m going to share some of the causes and origins of core isolation, the mistaken beliefs that can arise out of it, and how it can be transformed.
In a state of core isolation we can feel as if our most vital self is hiding in a dark cave within, waiting for someone to come and get us, whilst we quietly, and desperately yearn for a connection that never seems to reach us. Core isolation is caused by a challenging event, trauma, circumstance, or environment that occurred during the foundational developmental period from preconception through newborn. Isolation originating in this period can feel like “this is just how I am” or “this is just how it is”, when in fact it is about something that happened to you, or that did not happen when, and how, it was needed. We all have a need to belong, even if we are not in touch with that need.
Because many of us were conceived into unconscious, disconnected parents who were stressed, anxious, maybe traumatized, and not ready to be parents, and/or we were not welcomed, wanted, or planned, we have, at our core, feelings of isolation that can be coupled with mistaken beliefs, such as:
Can you hear the isolation inherent in each of these? Such core beliefs are deep, somatic, and debilitating, and are all too common. They can be transformed when they are deeply, and somatically, heard, integrated, and embraced. And, even though they may feel as if they are part of the fabric of who you are, they are not – they are usually about something that happened to you, or about the environment in which you grew, early on in your development.
There may be a strong yearning to connect, and we may have loving people around us, but we are unable to feel the love touch us deep inside. It can feel like there is something between us and others that prevents us from receiving, or even from perceiving, the love that is here for us because we can’t see, or feel it. We can heal and transform core isolation, and many of us need help with that because it is usually a relational wound, and relational wounds require relational healing.
During the formative stage of our lives, our experiences go deep to our root on all levels of being – both the good, loving experiences and the more challenging one’s. These experiences are not stored in our cognitive mind; but are deep somatic imprints (body/energy/emotional memories). We can be experiencing early imprints as if they are still happening in the present, and they physiologically feel just as they did back then. They manifest on the Soul, spiritual, emotional, psychological, physical, and relational levels, and impact us deeply at our core.
Everyone has a baby within who remembers her journey into life through conception to birth, and I refer to her as the Little One. Our Little One’s within, unborn babies, and born babies, all need to connect, and to be lovingly held and heard with attunement. We are all conscious, and sentient, so connection, welcome and love are what supports healthy development, the integration of our experiences, and gives us the feeling that we are held in love and warmth. The Little One, unborn and born babies combined will be referred to here as The Collective Baby because they all have the same needs.
Everyone has a healthy blueprint inside, a natural impulse towards health and connection, and integration and presence, right from our earliest beginnings. If you experienced early isolation because of a challenging womb environment, or a traumatic event, you may have had to struggle back then to hold on to your life, or find a way to adapt to stress and/or trauma. In the womb we find astonishing ways to use our limited resources to survive trauma and challenges. These kinds of experiences can hold deep inside of us, and absolutely can be transformed at any time afterwards. The widespread unconsciousness in our culture about how very conscious we are as babies, significantly contributes to our core isolation. Babies need love and support long before we can look into their eyes, and hold them in our arms. The Collective Baby’s are talking to us constantly, in their own language, about what they have experienced, are currently experiencing, and about what they need, and it’s our task to learn how to listen to them. We have a need to tell the story of our coming in to life, and to be heard deeply, this is natural and necessary human need. Everyone needs to be included, loved, and seen during this most extraordinary and foundational time of life when we are learning about people, the planet, relationships, sexuality, and what to expect here. We need conscious early parenting!
Core isolation can be transformed into deep connection, and gentle, loving contact with the isolated part/s of us can be profound and life changing. Isolation is an unnatural state because humans are fundamentally about connection. In my offices I’m daily in contact with isolated little one’s within babies, adults, and children who have never been truly seen and heard, or had a chance to unwind from stress or trauma that happened early in their lives. What is happening to us as unborns, newborns, and children that is causing so much enduring isolation? It can be a symptom of something that:
1. Happened early on that was stressful, traumatic, or too big to manage, and that has remained unresolved in the body/energy system resulting in an isolating imprint (somatic and energetic memory). It may be unresolved because there was no support, contact, healing, or acknowledgement available back then to help with what was experienced (in the womb, during birth, after birth, etc).
2. Caused a deep mistaken belief about yourself, or about others, which arose out of a direct experience, or out of the womb environment in which you grew, e.g. I am alone here.
3. Was missing, or that was supposed to be available and wasn’t, e.g. enough mirroring/attunement from a primary caregiver, not enough connection/attachment, etc.
4. Interrupted the embodiment process, making it hard to fully come into your physical body. This can cause a feeling of disconnection from yourself, others, your body wisdom, emotions, instincts, and intuition.
An example of transforming isolation with James:
James was having marital difficulties, his wife constantly complained that he was unable to show up, or take responsibility for anything, and that he was very avoidant of any kind of intimacy. James touched into deep feelings of isolation that went right back to the womb when he sensed that his mother was struggling. His response to her lack of resources was to feel that he must take care of her, and please her. This continued throughout his childhood as he held this role with his mother who constantly talked to him about all of her troubles and woes. This was way too much for a little James to manage. Both of his parents were very isolated people; there was an ancestral history of isolation and of not asking for support. His job, learned as a prenate, was to please his mother so that he would survive, and his Little One felt that if he didn’t care for her in this way, he would not make it. He continued to feel this deep imprint working through him as an adult. It is very common for us all as prenates to take on a role based on a mistaken belief, and often to feel that we won’t survive if we don’t do this job. As we connected more with his Little One James realized that in present time his Little One had been trying to do the very adult jobs of keeping his wife happy, parenting, and being a professional. His Little One was working so hard, without the resources to do these big adult jobs. When we connected with little James he was feeling profoundly isolated, and was whimpering in a corner. James made loving contact with his Little One, who was very receptive, and James felt his whole heart area open up and was engulfed by a feeling of bliss. This was the beginning of a beautiful new relationship that would continue to free James’s Little One from many years of being alone. A relationship between James’s adult self and his Little One developed that would eventually shift the burden of these adult jobs to where they should be, with the grown up James.
The roots of core isolation lay deep and can remain untouched even by our intimate others. We are not creating isolation in our babies on purpose, we are in the unconscious grip of a culture-wide unconsciousness about early consciousness, our own and that of others.
The Collective Baby’s want to come into whole health and balance, feel safe, and be present to receive the love that is here for them. They need our care, attention and awareness, and our help when something goes wrong. We all have a blueprint inside that naturally wants to move us towards health. Experiences that we have to cope with alone during our formative period create isolation on the Soul through somatic levels, which manifests in all aspects of our huwomanity.
Three causes of isolation, and how it can be transformed into deep connection:
1. Cause: Unresolved trauma and shock (overwhelm) during the foundational period:
A traumatic or stressful pre-conception, or prenatal event and/or prenatal environment, or a difficult birth can leave us feeling isolated at our core if unresolved or unacknowledged. This can affect attachment outcomes, leaving us feeling unable to receive, or connect deeply.
Transformation of core/early trauma is possible for all ages through attuned somatic and relational support that integrates early trauma and shock, and that listens to the Little One within. Anyone can make an intention to listen to his or her baby self within. Babies speak to us somatically through emotional crying, showing us how they are feeling in their eyes, movements and postures, and by sharing energy. Children are able to process their experiences, and their feelings, and tell us their womb/birth stories through attuned play, with hands-on support (attuned touch, cranial sacral, etc). Play and exchange of energy is their natural language. Interruptions, birth interventions such as drugs and induction, routine separation at birth, and common prenatal trauma’s such as twin loss, show up somatically and respond well to attuned touch and sensitive listening by an experienced practitioner, and sensitive, empathic parents. Learning how to listen to our babies and children, and supporting them to come into balance, is imperative for health and satisfying connection with others throughout life. Adults can get support to connect with, and listen to their Little One so that they can deeply understand what is truly driving their lives, and have more choice about how they want to live, and parent. Conscious parents can look at their own early story, dynamics, attachment styles, and trauma, and get some support to heal and transform those imprints before, or during, pregnancy so that they don’t unconsciously repeat their own imprints when they step into parenting.
2. Cause: Isolation and separation in hospital birthing:
99% of babies in the U.S.A. are born in hospitals. Our primary, instinctual, survival-level need is for connection; as babies we are wired to feel life threatened if separated from our primary caregiver. Routine separation of babies from their mothers at birth in hospitals can feel life threatening for babies and increases their cortisol levels (the stress hormone). Routine removal of baby for washing and other procedures may cause stress and if it becomes unbearable for baby they can dissociate (leave their body) to manage the overwhelming experience. Interruptions to the natural birthing process can be stressful for the mom/baby dyad. Hospitals need to do everything they can to keep baby on moms body after birth, skin to skin, because that is simply the best place for them. A woman’s chest/breast area is designed to change the temperature according to her baby’s temperature needs! Assisted Reproductive Technology can add to isolation imprinting for our babies (see my article on In Vitro Fertilization for some great ways to mitigate the affects of stress and trauma during a medical conception before you begin your I.V.F.). page link here.
Transformation can happen when we – parents, caregivers, hospital staff, obstetrician’s, gynecologists, labor and delivery nurses, grandparents, midwives, doula’s, childbirth educators, therapist and healers, etc embrace that we are conscious, extremely vulnerable, sentient beings even before conception, or at least from conception onwards. We need support, connection, and parenting all the way through our journey. Babies are having their own experience and need to be included, loved, parented, and considered at every point in their journey. Ideally, preparation for conscious parenting/conception would begin a year before conception – sign up on my website for my E-Book The 9 Principles of Conscious Early Parenting, or contact me for a copy. Many mothers are naturally in touch with their baby before conception through dreams, intuition, felt sense, messages through other siblings, etc. Prenatal attachment (two-way connection and communication between baby and her parents) builds a strong attachment between mom and baby before birthing. This connection makes mom the authority on her baby because she alone can connect with her intimately and know how she is doing. This is very empowering for mom and baby. Prenatal attachment develops a mom’s connection to, and trust in, herself and strengthens her intuition and momma instincts. See Conscious Early Parenting, Healing Womb & Birth Imprints, and Cranial Sacral for Babies under Services for more information.
When we experience our own Little One we are gifted with a felt-sense level of understanding about how conscious we all are when we came here to this life. Having this somatic and spiritual knowledge means that we will automatically place our babies and their needs at the center of conception, pregnancy, and birthing with a deeper sense of empathy for their whole journey. It also gives us an understanding of the need to create an optimal growing environment for our baby, and a way to think about how we can best do that. In our current cultural milieu adults, children and babies need help to heal from early separation, interruptions, trauma, stress, and our general unconsciousness in this area of life, so that they can live a fulfilling life, and have more choice, fulfillment, presence, and connection.
Birthing parents can seek empowering coaching for their births from midwives and doula’s working from an attachment based model. Many medical procedures can be carried out with baby in the arms of a parent, or skin-to-skin. In this way attachment, safety, gentleness, consciousness, and calmness are paramount, not procedures, schedules, and technology.
3. Cause: Soul, spiritual, emotional, and somatic trauma and deficits:
An absence of mirroring and attunement of our Soul’s embodiment journey from Source through pre-conception, conception, our nine months in the womb and onwards can affect how we feel at the existence level, e.g. wanting to be here, feeling good about being here, feeling present here, etc. Being heard, held, and seen, not just emotionally and literally, but feeling met in our somatic and spiritual selves is important because we are primarily spiritual in nature, especially at the beginning of our lives. When our Soul consciousness, emotions, and spiritual life remain unacknowledged this can cause a deep sense of isolation for us especially if there has been some difficulty, or even trauma, in the Source to pre-conception period. Stress and trauma can disconnect us from our sense of purpose, and from Source, making it harder for us to land in this life, body, and family. We may feel isolated and disoriented and wonder why we are here. We may feel a deep longing, or a sense of homesickness that is hard to understand, or touch in to, until we look at how our journey into this life disconnected us from ourselves, from Source, from our body, and from others who were here waiting to love us.
Transformation comes through reconnecting to our Little One gives us access to our early consciousness, our body and emotions, our connection to Source, our journey into life, and why we are here on the planet at this time, with this family. Connecting with the Little One’s inside of our babies and children will help them, as we are opening up to their consciousness and meeting their need to be heard. The Collective Baby’s, and children, know when someone is open and listening to them, and they will share their experiences, feelings, and story. They are telling us about it every day, in their own language. When I sit with a newborn, or unborn, I am absolutely holding a space for the epic journey they have just taken to get here from Source to this point in their life, and how hard I know it can be just to find oneself in a physical body – without anything else happening! You can hold this space too in the presence of The Collective Babies. Healing early spiritual and emotional wounds can transform isolation into deep connection, both inside (feeling more connected to self/body/emotions) and outside (feeling connected to others, life, Source). I have seen many babies and children settle into themselves when their early journey into life is heard with empathy and understanding. They become more present, embodied and calm. Our journey into embodiment/incarnation can be thwarted by difficulty, interruptions and unresolved trauma. It needs support and a place to be heard, and to unwind towards integration, deeper presence, and embodiment. A sense of purpose is important for many people, as it can feel very lonely to be here and not know why; it may feel pointless and frustrating, as well as isolating. Healing from very early trauma can help us to reconnect to our Soul level of being.
An example of transforming isolation with a 5 week old baby:
Five-week-old Matt and his parents came in to my office looking very frazzled. This was their first baby, and he had been crying inconsolably the whole time he was awake, ever since his birth. He had been conceived through In-vitro fertilization (IVF). They were at their wits end, and extremely sleep deprived. I held Matt in my hands, tuned in to him and his body, and as I looked at him I was totally open to hearing what he wanted to share with us. Inside I am saying “you can tell me about anything here” and sometimes I say that aloud too. He was crying and looking very unhappy, and his eyes looked very boggy and watery even when he wasn’t crying. He was looking up to his right as if he had a connection with something up there that was upsetting him. I have seen this look many times in babies; its as if their energy is going out and up after something ‘up there’, and at the same time they are trying to land in their body. I asked the parents to tell me if there was another one with him in the womb. Their story unfolded as they shared that after the assisted conception there was a brother conceptus who was chosen by the doctor to be placed in the womb with Matt. The doctor said his brother would give Matt more of a chance of surviving. Matt and his brother were placed in the womb together and they both implanted. The parents only wanted one baby, but were prepared to welcome two if necessary. Matt’s brother left, and Matt was bereft from this loss. This had been a very challenging process for him, and he had a lot of grief about losing his brother. Often with the loss of a twin it’s hard for the survivor to really land here, because part of their energy is pulled out towards the one who left, and there is longing and grief. When all of these dynamics and feelings were deeply acknowledged Matt stopped crying, and then turned his head and looked me in the eyes clearly for the first time. His eyes no longer looked boggy. The non-stop inconsolable crying stopped for the whole of the next week! Matt ands parents had two more sessions in which we helped him with other aspects of the In-Vitro Fertilization process that were hard for him, and he has been doing great ever since. Just imagine what it would have been like for him to hold all of that trauma and experience on his own. It was way too much to bear alone, and could have resulted in core isolation, and other issues, from unresolved trauma.
Our first nine months are the most formative of our life! We are laying down our emotional, spiritual, psychological, somatic, and attachment imprints and beliefs as we grow our foundation, and embody into the physical realm, into this world, and into our new family. This is a phenomenal and multi-layered developmental period for all of us, like no other time in our lives. Let’s not leave our babies to manage alone for the first nine months in utero, and let’s learn how to continue to listen to them once they are birthed to the outside world.
That we are deeply and profoundly affected for the rest of our lives by how we come into this life is deep information that can help us to heal ourselves at the core level, and to understand our children and ourselves more deeply. Core level healing is where the real change can happen.
Breaking isolation by lovingly and empathically attuning to a Little One – be it your newborn, or the baby that lives inside of you, or inside of your children, is a profound act because it breaks the deepest, core isolation, shines the light of love into the dark, lonely cave, and wakes up the precious Soul so that it can shine out into the World and do what it came here to do feeling fully present, and receptive to life on all levels.
Core isolation requires deeply gentle excavation, negotiation, and attunement. Initially, working with an experienced somatic practitioner is recommended, one who is skilled at reaching the deeper, somatic, core places.
I offer free telephone consults for people who want to talk to me about this work for themselves, their children, and babies, and for therapists/healers who want to refer to me. I offer supervision to practitioners and professionals in the pre and perinatal developmental period.
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