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Doorway to Wonder HOW INDULGING YOUR INNER CHILD BREEDS CURIOSITY & BRINGS HEALING with

Casee Marie

Your youthful, innocent, whimsical self lives inside you still. All she needs to show back up in your life is an invitation.

A

s part of my therapeutic journey to cope with a severe

Looking on the scene from my perspective of healing as an

anxiety disorder, I have worked on identifying my

adult, I understand where things had gone wrong in my inner-

myriad emotions as different versions of myself: each

life: that little girl was still scared, still ashamed, still in need

dominating feeling has taken the shape of me at a certain age or in a certain time of my life. My child self is the embodiment

of comfort and assurance.

of my Fear.

As part of my healing process, I emptied out a flowered

I can picture this scared little girl within me, who, despite

and found a few snapshots of my seven-year-old self, one

having a delightful life and a kind family, hid herself away in

in particular where I had been crying and my mother had

the back of her closet, always crying, always terrified that she

dressed me as my beloved American Girl doll to cheer me up.

had done something wrong. She was about seven years old.

storage box, dug through the family collection of photographs

I put the photograph in the box along with a few of my kept

With her brown hair still long, she hugs closely to herself

treasures from childhood: a stuffed bunny whose long ears I

the American Girl doll she was dressed to match, all frilly

would flop around and tie together whenever I was bored, or

white socks and patent leather Mary Janes. This was me the

content, or scared; a book of autographs from the characters

year I had a panic attack in front of my second-grade class.

at Disney World; a small card with an encouraging poem my

In response to my perceived outburst, my teacher chose to

mother had given me some time before I could remember.

reprimand me rather than comfort me. Though it was a small, short-lived moment in the space of my life, that scene had a big impact on my as-yet-unidentified anxiety, and it was a key source of fuel for the fear and avoidance that would render me housebound in my teens.

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The JOY ISSU E

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77

The Perpetual You_Joy through Whimsy  

Featuring Connecticut creatives Ave Rivera, Ann Marie Drury, Margit Fish, and Kellie Semmelrock

The Perpetual You_Joy through Whimsy  

Featuring Connecticut creatives Ave Rivera, Ann Marie Drury, Margit Fish, and Kellie Semmelrock