A Psychotherapeutic Experience of Premature Birth
Without hesitation I begin to feel my connection with another human being. I experience that being connected with another human being is a fundamental part of life and procreation. If something threatens that connection, then it is life threatening – the reason being, I am in the womb! To lose my connection threatens my life. But my life is threatened. I am expelled from the womb before my body and soul are mature enough to be ready to be separated, ready enough to undertake life disconnected from the placenta. I feel incredibly vulnerable. Each sound, whether a bird singing or a car going by, is a possible threat to my existence. I had been physically and psychically attached to my mother. Now the bond is broken.
I realise as I experience this that the broken bond, the feeling of life threatening isolation, enormously increased my sensitivity to threats. It set me up for what happened at three when I was placed in a convalescent home and was deeply traumatised. In itself the short absence of my mother was not as potentially traumatising as it turned out to be. But because of the birth experience, I was already traumatised to abandonment. To be hit by it again increased the volume of it enormously.
I wasnt properly formed, so it was very traumatic to be separated as a baby. I am trying to heal this at the moment. I feel the struggle of resisting what has happened to me. I cry out that I dont want to be born. I am not ready. I feel deeply alone. There is in me a sense that tells me I shouldnt be alone. It is like something that pushes me to seek not to be alone. I feel lost. Im not ready for this world. Im feeling awful.
In fact I do feel awful, like I am ill and can barely move, or move only with effort and concentration. I go on to say that I have felt awful most of my fucking life. I can see from the feelings I am meeting how they have contributed to my lifelong feelings of being lost and cut off – alone. I have always called it independence, and perhaps seen the positive side of it more than the negative. But it has been a source of restlessness and a spur to seeking a bonding with someone. Of course I want to find the security of the womb. I want to know someone is deeply committed and bonded to me.
I am so alone. Even when someone loves me I cant feel it. I want to change. I dont want to keep hurting Hy by living like she isnt there at an emotional level. But that is the feeling world I have lived in – who is there for me? I was part of something and I lost it. I was part of something that was good, and I lost it. I was a part of a woman and I lost her. I was rejected. I was rejected. Now I face this struggle just to exist, just to breath, just to be. This feeling of life being a terrible struggle just to keep going has pervaded me all my life. I’ve got to struggle to exist just to keep alive. Got to struggle just to keep alive! GOT TO STRUGGLE TO EXIST – JUST TO KEEP ALIVE! GOT TO STRUGGLE BECAUSE THERE’S NOTHING THERE. I WANT SOMETHING TO HOLD ONTO. I’VE GOT TO STRUGGLE JUST TO KEEP ALIVE.
I cry like a baby. The question burns in me – Why is life like this? I cry again. Then I realise that at first when I was born I was too small and undeveloped even to be able to cry properly, so I couldnt let out my misery. It is such a relief to cry now and be understood, to have known what I felt at that terrible time.
I am aware of my connection with my stream of life having been broken – the umbilical cord. What I realise as the adult watching this, is that because of its proximity to the genitals, there is an unconscious connection made between the genitals and the connection I seek to sustain my life. So even as a baby I am reaching for that connection with my genitals. I want to be fed. I attempt to reconnect through my genitals, but the pain of the separation is so acute even when I do try in adulthood, the pain of the separation turns me back. This is the story of the Garden Of Eden. I was in the garden and was cast out. Now when I attempt to return, an angel with a burning sword turns me back. Not only was it painful every time I attempted reconnection, but I had the unconscious expectation to be fed, to be nourished. Instead of that every time I had sex I felt cheated, deceived and betrayed. I was not fed, but deeply sucked dry of what small nourishment I had managed to build up. I wasnt fed, I was fed upon by a predator. Each sexual act was a betrayal, a predation, and a torturous pain. Yet I had to find my way to the garden again, because there lay the secret of my genesis and myself. So I would return, to be wounded once more. It is even painful to look back on those years of misery now. Why is life so painful?
Seen from this level of experience, that of the uterine baby, God is a projection. You were in connection with a great creator, the mother. You were at one with them, but now you have been cast out of the Garden of Eden, so you have lost your contact with God, the creator in whose bosom you had existed. Perhaps that is why I searched so long for God.