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To Heal My Injured Baby-Self (or To Soothe Infant Trauma)

In meditation

eyes closed

I check in with my body:

familiar tension,

arm pressed to side

where incision cut at 26 days.

Breath held.

Oh little baby,

I say to myself

aware of her suffering.

In my mind’s eye

I place my fingertips gently on my baby-throat      

where the intubation tube choked,

touch my tiny nose into which the NG tube was fed,

touch my incision, raw and red,

lay my hand gently on baby-belly

whispering, All ok now.

Breath finds belly,

rises to meet my warm hand.

Sweet release, relief–

my body shaking with tears.

"Becoming a Trauma-conscious Society"

is slow, but we are moving in this direction. What do I mean by a trauma-conscious society? The phrase, coined by Dr. Bessel van der Kolk in his book The Body Keeps the Score, has to do with understanding that many individuals are suffering from trauma due to conditions and situations of all sorts and that punishment… Continue Reading

1987 Headline: Newborns Do Feel Pain (Duh!)

New York Times November 24, 1987 Infants’ Sense of Pain Is Recognized, Finally By PHILIP M. BOFFEY  WASHINGTON, Nov. 23— Newborns do feel pain. Parents don’t have to be told that, and many pediatricians don’t either. But the contrary belief – that the smallest babies are such primitive organisms that they are oblivious to pain… Continue Reading

The Attack of the Great White Shark: A Trauma Trigger Strikes

As I lay in the dark in bed recently trying to sleep, the fear of death paralyzed me. My stomach was tight, my mind raced with fears: Has pyloric stenosis finally gotten me after all these years?   The week before, I had been pulling oil, i.e. chewing coconut oil, an ancient prescription for reducing inflammation in the… Continue Reading

The Year of the Body

My body. In 2017, I’m EMDR-ing my body part by part.  I started with my belly and abdomen. Here is where I was cut in 1952 in order to save my life. Back then, my stomach–the organ itself– was actually sliced in order to relieve pressure so the passageway into the small intestine would open up,… Continue Reading