Last week when I had my ridiculous scare with the health exam (see the post dated 10/4) I turned – as I often do when I’m ascared or troubled – to my Christian Science literature for inspiration, and… well… I ended up reading my own Madcap Christian Science triology. I hadn’t read these books for a really long time. In fact, I don’t think I’d ever read them one after the other before. There have been books I’ve written that, when I re-read them again later, I did not like so much – but last week when I finished reading the first book in the trilogy, Blessings: Adventures of a Madcap Christian Scientist, I found myself saying out loud – with some surprise – “Dang! This is really good!”
I wrote the first book back in 2005, as a response to other books I’d read about being raised in Christian Science. I’ve never discounted other people’s experiences with Christian Science – but I felt impelled to share my own story – which seemed to be much different from the stories other people had shared. My experience being raised by a Christian Scientist mother wasn’t scary or gloomy or depressing. I wasn’t neglected. Sickness wasn’t ignored. My childhood was full of joy and light and love and happy adventures. My mountain-climbing father got me into the Great Outdoors, and my Christian Scientist mom introduced me to the healing power of Love. I was blessed, and my book was a means of expressing gratitude for those blessings.
The second book, The Madcap Christian Scientist’s Middle Book, was about my experience dealing with massive depression during My Year of Insanity. I included messages from my friends, David Allen and Kathi Petersen, that inspired me then, and inspired me again when I read them last week. As I read the book anew, I gave thanks once again for the wonderful community of friends and neighbors who helped me survive that year.
The final book in the trilogy, The Madcap Christian Scientist: All Things New, chronicles my adventures as I transitioned out of my work as a public school teacher into work teaching at a non-profit alternative high school. As I read it last week, I remembered, again, that year of change and all that I learned, and all the wonderful new students and colleagues I met.
It was cool to be able to go back to those books – to remember the things I’ve learned and the progress I’ve made – and then use all that to help me through the challenges of last week. When I wrote those books I was hoping that they might help others get through challenging times. It never occurred to me that someday they might help ME get through a challenging time. 🙂