How many of us have been studying trauma resolution for many years?I started healing prenatal and perinatal trauma 20 years ago when a client remembered her birth on my table during a Biodynamic craniosacral therapy session. At first, I was curious about her experience and wanted to help. But, when I started tracking feelings of anxiety in myself while working with her, I committed to learning more about prenatal and perinatal experiences. It turns out we had similar birth experiences as babies. I asked myself, How could her experience affect me in present time? That question opened the way for my energy to flow into the work that has become my passion.
Our kinesthetic sense is the sense that tells you all you need to know about space: the space inside your body, the space around you and spatial relationships. It’s key to a body-oriented intelligence and, aptly, considered by many synonymous with extra sensory perception and intuition. Introducing a pregnant woman to feeling space, body breathing, and positive messaging is an effective way to wake up and empower her kinesthetic sense. And, trusting this inner-outer sense of space is essential for the pre and perinatal journey.
One of the most important and influential figures in somatic psychology is… a philosopher. Odd? Actually not. Because the more we learn about Eugene Gendlin’s revolutionary philosophy of the body, the more it makes sense that he is known as one of the originators of modern body-oriented psychotherapy.
Embodied sexuality can provide some of the best of what life has to offer including feelings of pleasure, connection and satisfaction. For many people, however, sexuality has led to some of life’s worst experiences—violations, broken connections, and traumas that lead to feelings of shame and guilt. Culturally, we have confused sexuality with how our bodies look rather than how we feel. Helping people restore healthy sexuality, defined as a specific state of vitality in the body, is a central focus of Bioenergetic Therapy.
While creating what some may consider as ideal circumstances for birth is important, I believe a new paradigm in birthing is greatly needed. This new paradigm starts with one vital understanding that has been overlooked in our western birthing model—babies are conscious beings. Our culture does not fully understand the concept that babies are conscious beings and all that comes with being a sentient being.
We develop in a sequence: conception, implantation, embryo, fetus, baby. Our cells unfold in a sequence, too. We form our bodies in relationship with our mother, our first environment, and then our family. Participants in the Womb Surround Process create specific intentions based on patterns that continue, in many ways, to confine and function as constrictions detrimental in their lives. These patterns are adaptive to the overwhelming event or events in our history but no longer serve in the present; in fact, they can get in the way of our growth or even the resolution of the original trauma.
Having no memory of an event does not mean it has no impact on one's life. These 'forgotten' events might still affect people's perceptions, emotions and behaviors without them ever being able to make a connection between present and past or process them verbally at a therapeutic session.
She says, "If only I could say everything I want", and tells us that lately she has begun writing a diary, despite her inner struggles. When she talks about her writing she diverges and tells how sometimes a style of writing can change and turn the most secret thoughts in her diary into what she calls "real writing", and gradually the energy in the room changes and we all feel that we are marching "into the real" with her. From the universal pain that pounds the room sprout new buds, her pale face becomes pink once again; her hands that previously froze over her mouth awaken and begin to move seemingly of their own accord in excitement, in order to add additional dimensions to the pouring words. Her body straightens up and starts swaying to the rhythm of her words, and she no longer needs support for her back, which was previously aching, and it seems that the strength of her vitality serves her and is like an internal support invisible to the naked eye, enabling her to sit straight and at the same to develop new dimensions. Gottfried, my co-facilitator for the group "Attending to the Silence" says, "Look how the energy in the room has changed". And this new recognition in transformation beyond the old standpoints is molded; another option beyond the painful dynamics of victim-aggressor-collaborator.
Shame distorts our judgment about the world, others, and especially about ourselves. It forms a harbor for self-doubt and anxiety and/or rumination around that doubting. Attempting to move forward to accomplish something, regardless of how badly it may be desired, calls forward an army of self-doubt or a cascade of depressive and freeze-like neuro-signaling.
Revival: Somatic Methodism & My Departure from the SE Trauma Institute