(Minghui.org) My childhood was miserable. Skinny, small, and often sick as I was, even my mother called me by a derogatory nickname. That made me really sad, so I hardly ever spoke and thought of myself as the ugly duckling in the fairy tale. Every day I was depressed and by dusk, I was always longing for my real home—although I did not know where it was.
I got married at 27 to a man three years younger than me. As the youngest son in his family, he was spoiled and never helped around the house. After we married, he did not care about our family and just wasted time playing Mahjong, chess, and poker. He often skipped dinner and sometimes did not come home all night.
I was very upset and fought with him about his behavior every day. As a result, I did not feel like taking care of myself and was often sick. With no money to pay for medical treatment, I had to endure the pain day after day.
One day at work, I had to process a big bucket of mushrooms. But when I tried to lift the heavy container, it wouldn't budge. A coworker saw this and offered to help. “Which bucket do you need? I can move it for you,” he said.
I thanked him and asked why he wanted to help me since none of my other coworkers did. He said he was a Falun Dafa practitioner and the teachings taught him to be a good person in all circumstances. I was curious and asked for more details. He recited a paragraph of Lunyu, and I really liked it. It was as if I was seeing light at the end of a long, dark tunnel.
I asked if he could recite another paragraph of Lunyu and he did. Realizing how important this was, I begged him to write it down so that I could learn myself. “Why don't you join our group practice after work? There are many practitioners like me,” he suggested.
That was how I found the path of Falun Dafa and started my journey back to my real home.
I went to work during the day and read Falun Dafa books and did the exercises with a group in the evening. But I did not understand the importance of improving xinxing, so I continued to fight with my husband at home. “I don't think you need to go there [group practice], since you haven't changed at all,” my husband said to me one day.
I was surprised, realizing that this might be a hint from Master for me to look within. Cultivation means following the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance in my daily life and letting go of attachments, but I'd failed to do that. Full of regret, I apologized to Master and hoped to do better next time.
I encountered a test several days later. I fixed dinner and waited for my husband to come home so we could eat together. He had played the entire day, but I didn't know that and casually asked, “Did you find some work to do today?” He was furious and swore at me, saying he had not done anything that day. Not only that, he said that he would keep doing nothing and it wasn't my business. If I wanted a divorce, that was fine with him, he added.
I reminded myself that I was a practitioner and needed to act upon Dafa's principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance. I told myself not to get angry. With no resentment or fighting mentality as usual, I calmly asked him for dinner. When going to group practice that evening, I was able to do the sitting meditation 20 minutes longer than normal and there was no pain. By then, I had a better understanding of what Master said, “One’s gong level is as high as one’s xinxing level, and this is an absolute truth.” (Lecture One, Zhuan Falun)
After seeing me improve, my husband became supportive of my practicing and participating in related activities. After the persecution started in July 1999, I decided to go to Beijing to appeal. My husband sent me off and told me to take all the money we had in case anything unexpected happened on the trip. Later on, when I went out at night to hang up banners or put up posters about Falun Dafa, he always came with me and said encouragingly, “Don't worry. Your Master is the greatest of all, plus what you do is the most righteous.”
When my husband went elsewhere to work as a contractor, he sometimes brought Falun Dafa materials to distribute or talked with people about that information. One time when we were visiting a cousin, I explained Falun Dafa to him. Influenced by the communist party propaganda, he was scared and tried to stop me, saying he had already practiced many types of qigong in the past. “No matter how many you learned in the past, they were all just a foundation for you to hear about this today,” my husband told him. “Falun Dafa is now practiced in more than 100 countries. You need to look into it.”
Because of his kindness and support for Falun Dafa, my husband also experienced blessings and miracles. One day at work, he was assigned to carry six sets of old heating pipes. The metal bar holding them together broke on the road and all the pipe landed on his foot, breaking two toes. He recited “Falun Dafa is good” as I'd often told him and did not feel any pain. He needed six stitches on his toes and the doctor said it would take at least six months for him to recover.
Although not a practitioner himself, my husband had learned from me to be considerate of others. He did not request paid disability leave, nor would he accept any monetary compensation. After continuing to recite “Falun Dafa is good” and “Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance is good,” he fully recovered in three weeks and was able to return to work.
My mother-in-law had cancer of the eye, and the doctors in the hospital could not cure it. She returned home and my husband told her to often recite the two phrases just like he did. Within about two months, my mother-in-law's eyes became completely normal. My husband was thrilled and became even more supportive of me.
Seeing these positive changes, many family members were also impressed. My daughter often gave me money to produce materials or purchase phone cards so that I could help more people break away from the Party's hate propaganda. She also received blessings for doing that. She used to earn 4,000 yuan a month but now her income is over 40,000 yuan per month.
My neighbors share an old townhouse complex with me. Whenever it snowed in the winter, I would clean the entire building. My neighbors were touched by my kindness and said they knew Falun Dafa practitioners were good people. When the police came to arrest me after the persecution started, the neighbors sent them away and notified me immediately, so I was able to leave home safely.
Many years have passed since I began to practice Falun Dafa. People who knew me from the time I was young said I'd changed a lot. When I visited my hometown, my neighbors were impressed at how young I looked and how fair my skin was. My childhood friends said I was much more beautiful than before and that the ugly duckling had been transformed.
I know all this happened because of Falun Dafa. And I am just one of the tens of millions of practitioners who have benefited from it. I feel so fortunate and grateful because, just as the fairy tale goes, “I never dreamed of such happiness as this, while I was an ugly duckling.”