Or, "How My Inner-Child Got My Outer-Adult to Play... in a Play.
Even at my age, which is more than a few decades, I'm learning to embrace all of me, even my inner-child. Part of that means allowing my inner-child to let my outer-adult how to have be creative and have fun. Many times, this means peering out from underneath my comfort-zone security blanket. This time, a phrase in an open audition event description for a theatre group in meetup.com caught my attention:
"No theatre experience is necessary, just a desire to have fun!"
I thought, "Hey! I qualify, no experience!" My inner-child squealed with delight and gave a shove to my outer-adult and said, "Go!" So, I went. My only goal was to participate in the audition for a play, something I've never done before. I participated in the audition and had fun. Goal accomplished. Went home.
But, apparently, they weren't done with me. I got a callback. Wow! That meant they liked my first audition and wanted me to return for a second one to see if they would cast me in their play.
I was floored and honored.
So, I went again, auditioned again, and went home again. They would let me know their decision. In the meantime, they invited me to be an understudy even if I wasn't cast in the play. I decided to commit to attending rehearsals and learning all I could even if I didn't get a part.
First, I had to Google 'understudy'.
I needed to see what I committing myself to. It was pretty much what I thought: learn what you can from seasoned actors and step in to read lines for anyone who absent from rehearsal. There was also the possibility of playing a role in the play if the casted actor couldn't attend. I wondered if that was possible; stepping in for an actor who dropped out of the play or got sick or something.
Long story short (Too late!),
I was ultimately cast in the play... and it was awesome! What a tremendous opportunity! It was challenging, fun, wonderful, and took quite a bit of energy. The directors and other cast members were all terrific people, and I had a very uplifting experience.
So, if and when my inner-child nudges me again, I'm going to take having fun very seriously.
"Who Else Can Love You? Things to Tell Your Child, Inner or Outer"
This book contains wonderful things to tell children of all ages. What I call an "outer child" is an actual child. Children are precious people in our lives. Perhaps they are your own children or the children of friends. Most are students. Perhaps you know them by some other relation, such as niece or nephew.
But what is an "inner child?"
Only a few of my friends and family realize how profound this project, writing and publishing this book, was for me. I wrote it with and to my inner child. Some hearing about this book may not even know what that means. Is it just me being a kid at heart? Do I have a split personality or dissociative identity disorder (DID)? Have I forgotten to grow up?
None of these, actually.
An inner child is someone I believe we all have in us. It's the part of us who is creative without self-judgment. It's the part of us who is compassionate without holding back. It's the part of us who belly laughs, gets excited about life, and loves wholeheartedly. It's the part of us who lives fully.
However, not every adult is integrated with their inner child. We may have experienced hurt and suffered pain of some degree at any time in our youth. This can cause our adult selves and inner child to part ways. Our adult selves want to forget the past and move on with our lives. But, our inner child can still be screaming for compassionate attention.
Our inner child probably remembers the pain quite well, even if the adult side of us downplays its role or even it's existence. This hurt part of us, the wounded inner child in us, may have hindered our belief as adults in our innate lovability. Often that continues and results in adult problems: excessive sadness, extreme shyness, isolation and withdrawal, severe depression, addiction or workaholism, etc.
Perhaps, we just need to be reminded of just how wonderful and loved we are so we can embrace and heal our inner child. As an adult, it can feel like the inner child is causing the problems at first. But, it's really the lack of love and acceptance, resistance in other words, that causes the problems to persist.
Let our inner child know we love and care about them. We believe in them and fully accept them.
To that end, my inner child and I got together to write this book for ourselves as well as others. We needed gentle and caring reminding of our own worth, and we know others would benefit from it, too. More than that, we wanted it to be irresistibly uplifting and positive.
So, it is with all our heart, me and my inner child, that we hope you enjoy this book immensely while taking it seriously.
You are so worth it, you and your inner child.