Sometimes I’d like to kill the crazy bitch, but she’s a part of me. Sometimes she makes me insane with her crying, whining, and constant needs, but I’ve made a choice to honor myself and the baby within me- my Big Inner Baby, that is. Adults are just large-scale babies with better verbal and motor skills. You’ve learned to potty in the toilet and use your inside voice, but if too tired, hungry, cold or pushed beyond your limits, I bet you’re a whiny, snippy, weepy, irrational fool. You become incapable of being a decent human being or recognizing that anyone else could have good intentions. One minute your girlfriend is the greatest blessing of your life, the next she’s the idiot who doesn’t deserve to be in the car if she can’t read a map. Your husband goes from the man quietly sitting on the couch, to the man who did that horrible thing that one time, and now, you’re pretty sure he’s going to cheat on you.
We all need help caring for our Big Inner Baby. With ourselves, we are like first time parents. There is a lot of trial and error in self-care. Even if you are a competent adult, there are extenuating circumstances that can take you from mature to cry baby. The Big Inner Baby tends to comes out in an adult when drunk, hung over, PMSing, in any family dynamic, if affected by illness, waiting in line, driving in traffic, constipated, caffeine deprived, under-sexed or any other stressful situation.
Since I was born extremely sensitive, I’ve had to become an expert on controlling my emotions. Now, if I’m under-fed, over-heated, exhausted and menstruating when I fall mountain biking, I can refrain from eating my fiance's soul. Even when he immediately says, “ Yeah, you’ve really gotta push hard through that point.” How do I have such mercy when he is clearly begging for death? I have a few guidelines I always try to follow.
How to Care for Your Big Inner Baby…
- Stay fed.
- Sleep as much as necessary. Don’t sleep the hours you think you should need. Hint: It’s more than five hours.
- Employ the 24 hour rule: If you want to yell at someone for being a dingbat, wait 24 hours and see if you still need to discuss or argue with the person. Usually, you don't, and you leave yourself more time to enjoy life.
- Have fun. Let someone tickle you, chase your lover around the house, laugh at the obvious jokes, skip, jump, dance, play. Make fun your number one priority. Enjoyment can be an added ingredient to any activity. You’ll naturally start to avoid personal drama and needless worry because you’ll recognize that it isn’t fun.
- Know your limits. I’ve got limits for skiing, drinking, hunger, everything. The limit is malleable from day to day, but I’ve learned to sense when I’m coming to my breakdown point and stop before an issue arises. Clearly express these limits and expectations to other.
- Don’t gossip or talk shit. If you don’t want drama in your life, stop gossiping. Just don’t talk about other people and their business. By giving your own opinion so much credit, you are building the belief in your mind that opinions matter. As a result, other people’s opinions about you are really important. You know what? You can’t do anything about their opinion and what they think doesn’t matter anyway. I feel so passionately about this, that I’m going to quote a poem: Be who you are
- Use your grown up words. As in, communicate as fully and accurately as possible. If something doesn’t go your way, but you never articulated what you wanted, try not to be mad. Either let it go, or explain what your expectations were and try again.
- Which brings us to, play nice. If you want the respect of others, respect them. If you want their clarity, be clear with them. If you want fairness, be fair to them. I can’t guarantee you will get what you give, but you will live a happier life knowing you did your best.
And say what you feel
Because those who mind don’t matter
And those who matter don’t mind.
“Adults are just obsolete children and the hell with them.”