[Celebrating World Falun Dafa Day] A Mother-Daughter Story
(Minghui.org) In my 17 years of Falun Dafa practice, Dafa’s principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance have reshaped my life, so much so that I have been able to treat my non-biological daughter as my own.
I want to write down my personal experiences, in hopes that all who read my story, when meeting up with life’s tribulations, contradictions, and low moments, will remember that the power of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance can help us cultivate selflessness and genuine kindness to make things right again.
How My Education Was Aborted
My family owns farms in the countryside. I was born with a tough temperament and a stubborn streak. I quit school when I was 13.
It was September 1976. I had just started junior high. During the politics class, the cap of my pen fell off to the floor. I bent down to pick it up and accidentally poked a female classmate, who got very upset with me and we got into a heated argument.
The teacher approached us and asked me, “What type of family are you from?”
I replied, “Rich farmers.”
He retorted, “No wonder! You come from pretty bad stock!”
Then, he proceeded to berate me.
When I got home, I decided I would not return to school.
My parents, my brother, my sister, and everybody tried to talk me out of my decision, but I was adamant.
Since then, I stayed home and helped out with all the chores. I did my best to take good care of everything, both inside and outside the house. But, I used all spare moments to read and learn on my own what I should have learned from school, and more.
And so, my unyielding personality accompanied me, through all sorts of ups and downs, for more than 30 years.
How Dafa Helped Me Raise a Stepdaughter
At the end of 1998, I started practicing Falun Dafa. That was also the year I got married. My husband was divorced, with an eight-year-old daughter by the name of Chenchen.
Chenchen was smart but rather hard to manage.
One day, she looked at me and said, “You are quite good, and look rather nice. You are a year older than my dad, but I don’t mind!”
I felt her remark was very interesting. I thought, “Poor child! Your parents got divorced and your mother left you behind. Although I’m your stepmother, I must take good care of you.”
Six days into my marriage, my younger brother bought me some new clothes. The whole time during his visit, Chenchen kept calling me mom.
As soon as my brother left, Chenchen asked me, “Didn’t I do well today? I kept calling you mom and not auntie, didn’t I?”
What she meant was, by calling me mom, she was trying to show my brother what an intimate relationship we had.
I was quite amazed by her remark. I thought, “This little girl is something…”
From then on, things got a bit tricky. She started giving me grief and causing endless trouble for me.
My husband worked every day, so there were only Chenchen and I at home. One day, Chenchen asked me, “How much money does my dad give you every month? How much have you spent and how much is left?”
She also told me I should make some money on my own. Later, she actually proposed she should be in charge of all money matters!
I was shocked and amused. I thought, “You are so young. You don’t even qualify for an ID card. How do you expect to manage our household finances? You are but a tiny person but your ambition is indeed huge!”
One day, a neighbor quietly shared with me, “Chenchen is no ordinary child. She was quite something from childhood. She’s used to everyone catering to her!”
She went on to relate to me a lot of capricious and vexatious things that Chenchen was known to have done.
I smiled and said, “I’m married to her father now. Knowing these things from her past serves no good purpose. Besides, I practice Falun Dafa, so I have to do the best for my child and my family.”
As a Dafa disciple, I have to live in accordance with Truthfulness-Compassion- Forbearance, so I often said to myself: “The child has been spoiled and misguided for so long. Now that she has become my daughter, I have to treat her well, tolerate her insolence and bad temper, raise her as my own fresh and blood, and help guide her with the teachings of Falun Dafa.”
Compared to my previous self before I practice Falun Dafa, I had truly experienced a rebirth. I was no longer capricious or stubborn, but have become very good and kind.
But Dafa cultivation is strict and I know I have a long way to go toward being totally on par with the demands of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance.
After three years of marriage, I gave birth to a baby boy. Now, Chenchen had a little brother 11 years her junior. I grew more and more patient with Chenchen.
When Chenchen graduated from junior high, she wanted a desk of her own. She found a desk she thought she particularly liked. I promised we would go check it out the following afternoon.
The next day, we planned to go look at the desk after I picked up her brother from kindergarten. But, the little boy fell asleep, so I decided we had to abort our plan.
Chenchen insisted we should leave her sleeping brother in the house and go. But I didn’t think it would be the right or prudent thing to do. Besides, the desk could wait.
Chenchen lost her temper, “We can still go with little brother asleep in the house. My mom used to go out to play mahjong and leave me alone by myself at home all the time.”
Because I wouldn’t agree, she grew more and more upset. She kept fussing and began hitting my back.
I thought, “This is not acceptable behavior. She dares to hit me the first time, there will be a second time. She has to be stopped right off the bat.”
So I turned around and held both her arms and said sternly, “Is a child allowed to hit an adult?”
Chenchen sat down on the bed and broke into loud sobbing.
That woke up little brother who wanted to know, “Mom, are you hitting my big sister?”
I told him, “I didn’t hit your sister. It’s your sister who’s hitting me.”
My son said, “I didn’t see big sister hitting you.”
I thought, “You were asleep. Of course you didn’t see what happened.”
Then, I thought further, “What am I doing? I’m a cultivator. I have to practice Compassion. I have to practice Forbearance!”
I never discussed with her father whatever happened between Chenchen and me. I only talked to Chenchen when things calmed down and we were on good terms.
Sometimes when she deliberately refused to listen to reason, I would say to her, “Let’s share this with your classmates tomorrow and see what they think.”
Chenchen would say at once, “If you tell them, I’ll die and not live any longer!”
How Dafa Changed My Stepdaughter
Gradually, Chenchen began to change. She would admit her mistakes. She no longer fought or argued uncontrollably. After a temper tantrum, she would even say to me, “Mom, I’m sorry. I was wrong.”
Of course, she would still have tantrums sometimes, and I would try my best to coax her. I didn’t feel anger toward her any more. I could feel my heart become more and more expansive.
One time, Chenchen wanted me to buy her a number of exercise books.
I said to her, “I’ll buy you the exercise books, but you’ll have to promise you’ll work hard on them.”
She got upset with my remark and began to throw a tantrum. She raised her face to the ceiling and started howling, deliberately wanting the neighbors to hear. But she wept without tears, and all the while she was also eating peanuts.
I teased her, “Your weeping is like thunder without rain. Anybody who hears you will no doubt think your stepmother is abusing you.”
She carried on for a little longer, and then stopped.
Sometimes I would fix her hair at home, and she would complain about this and that, or say that I was hurting her.
I would laugh and tease her, saying to her little brother, “You hear all that? She doesn’t dare to make any fuss at the salon even when she has to pay them big bucks. Her mother does her hair for free and gets nothing but complaints in return.”
We’re not well off, so I never ate snacks or spend money on anything frivolous or expensive, but I gave Chenchen everything she wanted and asked for. If she wanted to buy anything, I would buy it for her but would not spend any money on myself.
Whenever Chenchen said she would like to eat her favorite pot stickers with meat, I would make her a big bowl but would not partake myself.
One day, she went visiting a classmate whose mother made them some pot stickers and they ate them together.
Chenchen became curious and asked, “Auntie, you eat that?”
Her friend’s mother wanted to know why she asked, so Chenchen said, “My mother never eats that kind of food.”
That was what the classmate’s mother later told me.
With the passage of time, I began to feel that the relationship Chenchen and I were enjoying was no different than that of a pair of biological mother and daughter.
Although Chenchen never said anything to me about it, yet from the time she went to university to graduation to now entering the work force, she still comes to me whenever she encounters problems and feels she needs advice or a sympathetic ear.
Sometimes she asks me, “Mom, how do you get along so well with people? You have such a good relationship with so many of them.”
I then talked to her again about the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion- Forbearance that Falun Dafa teaches.
Chenchen would give what I said some thought and most times would agree that Dafa’s principles are correct and logical, but sometimes she would remark, “In society in this day and age, if you’re not tough and aggressive, people will bully and take advantage of you!”
So I would explain to her, “What the Communist Party advocates are falsehood, brutality, and struggle. But what kind of problems have they solved? They only make people more and more indifferent to each other, dragging society's morality lower and lower, and finally everyone is victimized.
“As people who live between heaven and earth in the universe, we must follow the characteristics of the universe: Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance. Only these principles will bring people greater harmony and prosperity. Look to the future, and you’ll know that what I’m telling you is the truth.”
Chenhen nodded her agreement.
My brother’s daughter Xiaoxia also has a stepmother with whom Xiaoxia does not enjoy a good relationship.
One time, Chenchen said to Xiaoxia, “You don’t have my luck. I have a good mother.”
How My Stepdaughter Came to My Rescue
In 2015, the police raided my home and took me to a detention center where I was detained for over 10 days.
My sister came over to my house to help take care of my son.
Later, she told me, “After you were abducted, Chenchen took a leave of absence from work and went to the police station, the Public Security Bureau, and the Procuratorate to demand your release. She cried every night until you came home safe.”
I learned that during my detention, Chenchen would go every day to visit all related government officials to talk to them at great length.
She would tell them, “My mother is not my own mother, but I took leave from my work and come here every day to ask you to let her go. Why? Because she has raised me for 17 years as if I were her own flesh and blood. She is able to do that because she practices Falun Dafa. How could you abduct and detain such a good and selfless person?”
She would relate to them in great detail a whole lot of stories between us through the years.
Evidently, she had taken to heart my Dafa sharing with her all the years she was growing up under my wing.
Despite her constant flare-ups, she knew right from wrong, good from bad, truth from lies. The notion of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance had taken root in her heart.
Chenchen was able to store in her memory many touching stories of our 17 years together, when I had strived to live my belief in Falun Dafa and to do my best according to Dafa’s teachings of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance.
Now, these stories in turn were touching the hearts of the police, prosecutors, and lawyers, and allowed them to see the beauty of Falun Dafa and the goodness of those who believe in and practice it.
When I was arraigned, the prosecutor showed me due respect. I knew he was aware that I was the responsible producer of a good amount of Dafa materials the police found in my house.
The prosecutors started by informing me, “I am in full awareness of your family situation. Your daughter has talked to us extensively…”
Then, he signaled hints to me not to answer a lot of routine inquiries. On the official document, he noted “Did not respond.”
Finally, he asked if I had any last request, whereupon I responded with a resounding “Release!”
He noted my response on the official document, and said to me, “You’ll hear our decision in three days.”
Three days later, I was released.
After that, I went to the Procuratorate to clarify the truth about the persecution of Falun Dafa.
The prosecutor informed me, “You Falun Dafa people are all good people. Your arrests are all miscarriages of justice... I’ll see to it that every case that passes through my hands is settled within seven days. I’ll quietly help all Falun Dafa practitioners to the best of my ability. I can promise you that.”
How I Continue to Validate Dafa to the Police
I also went to the police chief who had ordered my abduction. I knew he had arrested a number of local Falun Dafa practitioners and had threatened some of them with loss of employment. We had written letters and made phone calls to him, but our attempts had so far failed.
When I went to his office, I told him sincerely not to listen to the lies of the Communist Party. I also shared with him how it would be prudent and important for him to renounce such an evil Party, for his personal peace and future safety and security.
He suddenly confided in me, “My aunt was not the biological daughter of my grandmother yet my grandmother also treated her very well. But, that happened a hundred years ago. It is now next to impossible to find people like you and my grandmother.”
Then, he shared with me what Chenchen told him when she sought him out to seek my release.
He added, “People who want to persuade me about something have to convince me with their exemplary words and actions. My family believes in God, but nobody has succeeded in convincing me of anything.”
I said to him, “You already know that Falun Dafa is good, why don’t you allow me to use the overseas website to help you renounce the Communist Party?”
I also told him honestly and frankly, “You were lacking in compassion in the past, but when you separate yourself from the evil Party, your compassionate side will come out.”
He agreed without missing a beat, “Yes. I’ll quit the Party.”
I now continue going to the local police station to clarify the truth. The police there notice how their chief is cordial toward me, they also behave likewise.
Sometimes when we happen to be where there is no surveillance or other monitoring devices, some of them even open their hearts and share with me the vexing problems in their lives.
I always try to use the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance to analyze their situation and recommend the best solutions to them.
I realize the natural inclination of many in the police force is still that of goodness and kindness. They are merely poisoned by the Communist Party’s constantly reinforced propaganda and lies, so that when they perform their duties, they are inadvertently led astray by the “need to carry out orders” they have been bombarded with.
One day, I woke up in deep reflection from a dream where I dreamed I was out looking all over for my child, who happened to be none other than the police chief.
The dream and my reflection make clear to me that, as a Falun Dafa practitioner, if I was able to treat a non-biological daughter as my own, with no complaint or resentment, shouldn’t I be doing the same with all sentient beings, including the police who are so deceived by the evil Party?
Dafa’s compassion transcends everything. As a Dafa practitioner, I must and will utilize the compassion learned from Dafa to wake up all people so that every precious life will enjoy a good and bright future.