We have all experienced pain and trauma at some point in our lives.
Ideally, at the time of the painful situation or event, we were able to work through it and return to health and wholeness. Ideally, any trauma we experienced fully resolved and we returned to our lives even more resilient than before.
Unfortunately, that is not how things go all of the time.
Often, we don’t receive the proper care and attention our body-mind-spirit needs in order to fully heal and return to wholeness following a painful or traumatic event.
In these cases, the pain and trauma remains stored in our bodies, in our nervous systems.
Our nervous systems then tend to recreate situations that are similar to how the original wound occurred in an attempt to heal the original wound.
A personal example from my life involves sustaining severe cranial trauma at birth.
For the first 25 years of my life, I repeatedly hit my head on shelves, when getting into cars, etc. I would even fall off of ledges and somehow land on my head. Further, my head was a constant target for basketballs, volleyballs, you name it.
This is one way in which my body attempted to work through the original trauma – through recreating the trauma in the hopes that this time I would receive the support and healing I needed.
Unfortunately, this approach doesn’t always work. Instead, more pain and trauma is layered on top of the original wound.
The same thing happens within lineages.
If a trauma occurred and was not resolved within the lifetime of one of our ancestors, it will be passed on to the next generation. This wound will then continue to seek healing through playing out in ways similar to the original wound in the lives of future generations.
If you are interested in HOW this happens, check out the science of epigenetics – amazing! Or, listen to my class on Healing Multigenerational Pain and Trauma – I go into this part in greater depth there.
My head trauma exemplifies this piece as well.
Looking at my lineage, birth trauma is present in my mother’s mother’s line. Headaches and migraines are rampant in another of my lines.
What if the wounds of these two lineages intersected in me, in my body, in a way that led to both the cranial trauma at my birth and the ongoing migraines and headaches I’ve experienced throughout my life?
In this example, if I work the cranial trauma/headache/migraine piece from only the perspective of personal healing (which I did for decades), I’m not going to get very far. And, I didn’t.
If I can work with this same pattern using a multigenerational perspective, something different has the potential to open. And, it has. (I’ll speak to this in more depth another time.)
It is crucial to consider both our personal trauma and the wounds/trauma that flows to us from previous generations.
Working towards healing on just the personal level, in my experience, will only get you so far.
This is because, without the multigenerational perspective, you will be working and working on patterns that aren’t solely yours. Patterns of pain and trauma that aren’t solely yours require a different approach.
Working only on the ancestral level, in my experience, has the potential to get your further faster; however, you will eventually hit a wall here as well.
This is because both personal and multigenerational trauma is held in our bodies, in our nervous systems.
Healing and elevating our ancestral lineages does go a long way towards also clearing our bodies and nervous systems of the residues of past trauma.
However, engaging in present moment, body-centered trauma resolution work at the same time allows this work to proceed with more ease and grace.
In summary, when it comes to working with the stuck patterns of pain and trauma in our lives and bodies:
- Both paths are necessary.
- Walking only one path (although you will make some progress) is unlikely to result in the full healing you desire.
Of the two paths, I recommend first working with your Ancestors to heal the wounds of the past. From there, doing your own healing work will proceed with much more efficiency and completeness.
I can support you in walking both paths.
The Tending the Sacred program focuses primarily on multigenerational healing, on healing the wounds of the past. For assistance walking both paths simultaneously, consider the Recover Your Natural Power and Wholeness journey.
Rosi Goldsmith says
Beautifully said. Thank you, Larisa. I love how you weave multiple levels. An inspiring tapestry to move out of pain into resolution.