On the 23rd January a large audience welcomed Matthew Appleton to talk to TAP about Prenatal Umbilical Dynamics.
Matthew is a Craniosacral Psychotherapist with a practice in Bristol. and through his own clinical practice, backed up with research from Otto Rank (a student of Freud) and Frank Lake, he spoke about how babies have stories that need to be told and how they need to be welcomed into the world.
Matthew asked the question: - What is your relationship with food, money and intimacy? Our patterning and imprinting starts in the womb and we need to discover what is at the other end of the umbilical cord. Matthew showed some video clips of babies’ body language and how he can gauge in which trimester the baby is experiencing toxicity. As the hands develop the baby can clamp down on the umbilical cord and regulate what they receive.
There is specific umbilical body language; pinching, arching, umbilical shunting, hemispheric shunting, pedalling and conducting, which the baby uses to show what negative umbilical affect has been experienced in the womb. A therapist trained in Pre and Perinatal Psychology can work with the baby and parents to show the baby empathy, and acknowledging their pain the baby becomes more relaxed. This work can result in the person being able to pull out of pain quicker later in life. Metaphorical umbilical mouth movements, using the tongue, gulping, straw breathing and defensive blocking, are all indicators of our relationship with food, money and intimacy in adult life.
It was a fascinating talk, emphasising how, by being attentive to body language in the therapy room, the pre-birth story can be told and acknowledged.