Healing dimensions: Part V

by tamarjacobson

In the final chapter of my book: Don't Get So Upset: Help Young Children Manage Their Feelings by Understanding Your Own, I write about how we can all change our emotional scripts. Lately I realize that understanding my emotional script has been instrumental in helping me change it, even though at times it is very painful and requires constant courage and hard work. After all, I learned those feelings about myself from patterned, repetitive behaviors and interactions from the most significant adults in my early childhood.

In a way it is a little like living in a self-made prison, believing that the way I was treated was because I deserved it – a common way of thinking that many young children develop in circumstances similar to mine. The more I understand that most of what happened had nothing to do with who I was, and so much more to do with what was going on in those adults lives at the time, I am then able to break out of the made up myths and misconceptions, and thus change the script. 

By writing my books, I guided myself towards the exit of the self-made, emotional prison, that in some ways helped me survive some excruciating double binds and scapegoating. But now, I can start to break free. I am an adult myself, feeling safer, and can shed the shame that binds, as I head into my next writing project. 

For one reason or another lately, I have been pondering about what contribution I might have made to the profession, and have even been asking colleagues and friends how they see my contribution to the early childhood field. I must say that people have been most generous in their responses, for which I am always grateful and humbled.

More and more I am coming to the conclusion that one of the ways is through both my books for teachers, where by modeling my internal ethnography, they are able to learn how to do the same type of self-reflection for themselves. Consequently they are able to make theirs and young children’s lives better. At one level, sharing my feelings and life experiences has not been easy, but on the other hand, it has quite often helped others share theirs too. I believe that we commit a kind of violence to children we care for and educate, if we are not willing to become aware of how and why we tick. Because then we act unconsciously, and often unintentionally take out on small children many of our own emotional biases and personal issues. As professionals we owe it to young children in our care to know who we are!

Thus, the healing continues in spite of myself. For once I set out on this path towards freedom and light, there is no turning back.