One of the few good things I can remember in my childhood was my connection to the dogs we had. I had such a bond with them, I loved them so much. THey were my brothers / sisters (I was an only child).
Over the last 20 years of living on my own, I've always had a desire to have a dog. Opining for one so deeply, but resisting the urge to get one. I live in a city, in studios/ apartments, and didn't think it would be responsible to get a dog.
My sponsor convinced me to read up a little bit and bend a few rules to get a dog. I did.
Having the dog around is helping me to reconnect to the child that was - I feel joy and happiness when playing with him. I've become a little bit silly, and find my sense of humor spontaneously erupting with quips and sly jokes.
Something that might help you find the inner child within - to remember the things you DID love in childhood, and do them again. Or collect a few artifacts / toys from childhood, if you can. Remember the good (there was SOME) and bring it into your present day life. The child within will awaken and let you know how to be with him.