AS I LIVED SECLUDED within the walls of my mind, shut away with only negative, unhappy thoughts haunting me, my fingers bled from long hours of my biting my nails, a habit I acquired as a young child. I'm not certain why I did this, but it seemed to help calm me. I heard voices—although they were actually thoughts reeling around in my head—that yelled at me in childhood: You are fat, stupid, worthless, a bad girl, lazy, and sad. You are capable of very little. I accepted these thoughts as true, burrowed them deeply into my consciousness, and suffered immensely from them right on into adulthood. My hands and my heart needed healing.
At various times in my life, through various friends and neighbors, the healing message of Christian Science touched me like a gentle butterfly resting on my shoulder—something beautiful, but every time I came near it, I let it slip away.
For example, when I was a teenager my first love, a young Christian Scientist, spent many evenings with me on my front porch discussing how to listen to the still, small voice of God (see I Kings 19:12), that speaks to us in our hearts, telling us how to silence outside negative voices. My boyfriend gave me a copy of Science and Health and invited me to church.