I am lying in bed with my baby. She’s just woken up and finished eating. This is the time of day when she is most bright-eyed – everything about her is awake, clear, ready to play.

I coo, she coos.
I say “aaaaaah” and she says it back.
I smile and she smiles. I laugh and she laughs.

As I stare into her eyes and look at her, I wonder what it’s like for her to look at me. Of course, I’ve read the child development books that tell me now her vision is 20/40, that she can see subtle contrasts in color, that she can see me when I am farther away. But what is it like for her – what is she experiencing – at a time before words, before conscious concepts, before beliefs?

As I look at her, the phrase “baby body” occurs to me. She is a baby body moving through the world, soft and small and sensing – all feeling.

When I coo in a spirit of delight, her whole body feels it and is lit up with that delight. When I talk to my husband in an even slightly stressed tone of voice, her baby body feels it and she immediately begins to cry. If I read a great novel on my phone while she’s falling asleep nearby, no problem. But if I check my email, her baby body feels it and she comes right out of her hazy doze.

She experiences life not just in this baby body, but through this baby body – sounds and images and the very quality of the space she’s in, shaping what she feels.

And at that moment something says in my head: Tara, inside of you, there is also a baby body. My own baby body is still there, like a Russian doll nested inside the bigger, tougher, worldlier bodies that have been layered around it over a lifetime.

That baby body is still inside of me, sensing her way through the world, absorbing a trillion pieces of data – sounds and images and facial expressions and the feeling in the space – that make my body-mind-heart system tense up or relax, open or close, stay or flee.

Yes, now, at almost 40, I have some tools that help me work with what my baby body senses.

But that is not what is interesting to me today. What is interesting is that the baby body is still alive within me and within you, always sensing, reading the cues, feeling her way through what is safe and what is not, and responding.

How many times have we neglected to return to the places, the conversations, the activities that make our baby bodies joyful, or relaxed, or at ease?

How many times have we pressured ourselves to return to the places, the conversations, the activities that make our baby body contract, constrict, sadden?

Our baby bodies deserve respect.

I don’t just want to remember my baby body.

I want to remember that inside of everyone else is also a baby body, as sensitive and ever-sensing as my baby’s own.

I want to be the kind of person that other people’s baby bodies relax around. I want to meet them as tenderly as I would a little one who just came here.

After all, we are all little ones who just came here.



photo credit: Oleg Sergeichik

Join the discussion 16 Comments

  • Lisa DiMona says:

    This is wonderful, Tara. That baby body must be what we’re being asked to try and access when we turn onto our right side in fetal position at the near end of yoga class. Now I get it. xo

  • Carenna says:

    Hello Tara,
    I feel so connected to my inner world and bringing it to the outside world is the process I am currently navigating. Your book and 10 rules doc are helping me feel supported as I venture inward. I am so grateful for your specific deeper questions. Thank you.

  • Neha says:

    Dearest Tara, What a beautiful post. I felt right there with you and your little one…in touch with her preciousness. And then to connect with our own preciousness and in everyone we encounter…beautiful. I found your last lines especially inspiring…to remember the kind of person I want to be for others, a space to be playful, free, safe, and loved. <3 Thank you!

  • Anne says:

    I love your post Tara. Really resonates with me – I often sense the baby body inside my teenage daughters when I wake them and really feel the baby that they each once were in the half state between being awake and sleeping. Absolutely reminds me that we all have our little selves inside and need to remember them and appreciate them,

  • kiki says:

    Wow Tara, how beautiful. It touches me. I love it when you also write so vulnerable.

  • Jill Bell says:

    Love this Tara. How beautiful, sweet and poignant. And what a great reminder to nurture ourselves and everyone else – at our core truth. Thank you as always!

  • Robin says:

    This is so beautiful, Tara.
    Thank you for writing and sharing.
    Much love to you and your little ones 🙏🏻💞

  • Laurie says:

    I love this whole notion and can sense and feel the Baby Body inside of me and how important it is to remember that it, too, lives in every other human being, no matter what they may be showing to the outside world. Thank you, my dear.

  • Jean Vaux says:

    Ahhh. Uh huh. Coo.

  • Karen says:

    Thank you for this post. It resonated deeply and is a wonderful reminder of our inner baby bodies. We can use this idea as guidance in our daily encounters to see what is aligned with our inner selves and what isn’t.

  • Marion Robbins says:

    What a gift you have given us! Yes, we all know our wonder-full baby bodies, but we forget. Thank you for this sweet, nurturing reminder! With great love!

  • This is so beautiful, thank you!

  • Elle says:

    YES, just beautiful. Thank you.

  • Tere Insley says:

    You’re a wonderful writer Tara.

    I love the concept of being at ease

  • Elaine Bailey-Fryd says:

    What a lovely way to honor our bodies. Thank you for this beautiful insight, Tara!

  • Sophie Cospain-Davidson says:

    What a very natural and brilliant observation. I will bring this into my daily awareness with myself, my family and those around me.

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