After some reflection, though, there might have been some clues.
THEN: I CHEWED ALMOST EVERYTHING. I didn’t just chomp on my fingernails or pen lids—reliable choices, if a touch pedestrian. I bit whole hands off my baby dolls. I left bite marks at the foot of my wooden bunk bed. If it was pliable, my teeth chewed it. This lasted until puberty. Textbook self-soothing.
NOW: I throw out pen lids and have gum nearby at all times. My fingernails are still, um, “manually maintained.”
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