The baby you will see is not your baby!

Our brain is incredibly versatile. We have incredible physical capabilities and athletes prove that there is room for more, because records are kept being broken. We can achieve a lot with our minds. For every problem, there will be someone to solve it. This is how our brain works: when a question is asked, an answer is developed. What is particularly special, is that we can imagine all kinds of things. We save images of the past, and we create images of the future. We fantasize about the things that will happen and the more vivid the imaginations, the more real they seem.

When we are expecting a child, we make an image of that child. We have a memory of ourselves as a baby. This memory might not be so clear, but it is there. What happened to us when we were babies, is influencing our image of babies in general and in particular the image of our own future child. You don’t even have to be pregnant to have this image. The image has all kinds of components. If we have experienced a good childhood, these components might be: feeling like someone is watching over you, feeling safe, supported, welcome, etc. If our childhood was not as pleasant, these components might be: lonely, abandoned, unsafe, unwelcome, etc. The more specific we are in what we remember about our own childhood, the more precise we know what we want or don’t want for our child.

For me, the component was: unsafe. That is why I wanted to make sure my daughter would be safe. But with my history of insecure attachment, I wasn’t able to achieve that properly, because I missed safety as an elementary feeling. What I could achieve, was providing safety by my actions, like holding her hand when we were walking outside and making sure she wouldn’t get hit by a car. What this shows is that you are not able to give your child something you haven’t developed yourself yet.

It is useful to talk to each other about ‘the baby in you’ when you are pregnant. The more clear you are about this, the more you will be able to see your child as he is. But still, the way you will see your baby, is not who your baby is. It is a biased image of your baby, which means your partner is seeing a different baby. When you realize this, there is space for your child to be himself.

We have all these images of ourselves as a kid at different ages. The ages at which something bad or good happened to us will be the clearest. The memories of ourselves as a baby are very sensorial, because at that time we did not have words yet to express ourselves. These memories are key-notes in our emotional life and are about basic notions, like feeling safe or confident. At a certain stage these memories can get words, mostly at emotional moments through sensorial associations.

What is your key-note? Do you remember anything from when you were a baby? Please share below.

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