An Old Book Sheds Light on a Family Mystery
by Janna Colaco, C.Ht. (Written with Permission.)
Yesterday, while reorganizing the linen cupboard, I noticed a strange pink baby book wedged beneath a tablecloth. Abandoning my project, I grabbed some cookies and sat down to read.
The book was my mother’s. Grandma Raine (like the weather), had scrupulously documented Mom’s young life and milestones.
“January 16, 1945: Judy was sick on her birthday again,” Raine wrote in her whimsical style, with little circles dotting her i’s. “All the children and cousins came over for her party, and played pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey and spin-the-bottle. Aunty made cake and brought ice cream, but Judy missed it all. She was sick in bed.”
As I read on, it became apparent my mother had been an incredibly sickly child. Between birth and five years old, she'd had bronchitis multiple times, pneumonia, mumps, chicken pox, measles, virus X (whatever that was), ringworm, and multiple bouts of the flu.
“Her temp ran as high as 105 degrees,” Raine continued, “and she was attended by Dr. McGregor.” The same thing happened the next birthday, and the next.
December, 1942: Judy didn’t feel very well on Xmas. She got a lot of nice presents — 3 dresses, slack suit, slip, 2 sets of blocks, 2 dolls, several Holgate toys, and defense stamps.”
I imagined any two-year-old’s crushing disappointment of getting sick and being left out (defense stamps notwithstanding). How disappointing! How unfair! Deep childhood emotions become subconscious blueprints for life.
My intuitive mind ‘saw’ the parade of loving aunties and uncles chortling over my sick toddler-mother. “Oh, Judy, I’m so sorry you’re sick. Such a shame, honey…”
Two-year-olds aren’t logical. My mother, to this day, craves sympathy— her connection to love and attention. She never felt included. She still doesn’t. She’s quietly uncomfortable at parties, and assumes people don’t want to talk to her. Despite being brilliant, beautiful and accomplished, she feels she’s an outcast. Childhood fades, but the emotional patterns remain.
The puzzle pieces fell into place reading her baby book. This was nobody’s fault. She had a loving family. No parent can protect a child from the emotional impact of chronic illness. I doubt Mom is even aware — she was clearly too little to remember how it all started.
Nonetheless, deep healing is available.
As a Certified Hypnotherapist, helping others heal at the level of cause is the most rewarding part of my job. Every one of us has our own emotional blueprint. Inner child work is a powerful healing tool. Even when cause is unknown, inner child healing transforms lives. If you, or anyone you know experience uncomfortable emotional patterns, I’m here to help. Reach out, and we can turn things around together.