(Workbook Page 44)
For most of us our mothers were the first source of soothing. Touch, taste, sustenance, thought, problem solving, social interaction, sound, sight, smell, warmth, relief, pleasure all come from these interactions. The actual shape and flexibility of our DNA is profoundly affected by these early experiences. The infant cries and someone responds. When that response is soothing, the brain and body make new connections and set up a memory of being soothed. The link of crying and being soothed is established. Over time, the child is rewarded for more pleasing behaviors, like smiling back at someone. As sounds are made by the child, they are often responded to with other pleasing sounds. Body language and facial expressions are read, interpreted and addressed even before any negative or positive value is assigned. In this way the child’s needs are attended to and anticipated, before they become anxious and fearful. Mirror neurons between mother and child are firing back and forth to make this preverbal connection that ushers the child into a world of increasing comfort, experience and pleasure. Mirror neurons look no different then the other nearby nerve cells, but their function is dedicated to read what is happening in others and to link that to our own experience. Long before rational thought is even possible, the most sophisticated part of our body, the connection between ourselves and others, is being stimulated. Literally, the infant is learning to connect to another and communicate what it needs, have those needs met and regulate their internal electrochemical environment. Thus, the association between soothing and relationship with another is established.