begged him to help me. He was renowned for his wisdom. If anyone could free me
forever from my food addiction and compulsive behavior, he could. I finally stopped
talking and waited to receive the healing words than would end my problem and bring
about future bliss.
Dr. Murphy was quiet for what seemed like an eon. “When you get home, Carol, I
want you to look into your dresser mirror and repeat, ‘I am a child of God. I am a child of
God.’ Do this several times a day and think deeply about what it means.”
That’s it? Six words? That was going to heal me? That was the best advice the famous
Dr. Joseph Murphy could give me? I tried not to show my disappointment. Where were
all the words of deep wisdom? Where were the practical, beneficial and specific rules that
I could immediately put into use toward becoming a stronger and happier person? I
wanted a plan. Ten steps. Easy to follow instructions. Suggestions of what to read.
All the way home, I groused about the pitiful piece of advice I had been given. It
would never work. With each step I took, I felt more depressed and deflated. My
anticipation had been so high. I had placed this man on a high pedestal where someone
with such a great mind deserved to be. I had thanked my lucky stars for the glorious
opportunity to visit with him one-on-one and receive personal advice that came from
years of experience working with people like me.
I tried the ritual. Religiously. I peered into a mirror every time I passed one and recited
the phrase. Before I went to bed, I gazed into the dresser mirror sobbing, “I am of child of
God. I am of child of God.”
Each week, I gained another two pounds.
The face in the mirror reflected my feelings of despair and failure. My life consisted of
work, sleep, laundry, cooking, grocery shopping and house cleaning. I rose at four
o’clock some mornings to finish work assignments so that I could deliver them to Marcia
after taking the girls to school. This, after addressing envelopes until 11:00 p.m., because
I could no longer focus on the script. My life was not only affecting the girls’ behavior, it
was affecting mine. I developed an increasing impatience; just about everything annoyed
me, from the beeping of a car horn to the chirping of a bird.
This was my life in the mid-seventies. I was approaching my forties.
“Of course,” I reasoned on good days, “I’m not the only woman in this position. Every
major city has hundreds to thousands just like me.” But a woman suffering from
emotional or physical wounds can’t see further than her front door. She knows she is
absolutely the only woman in the world suffering
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