Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Recovery Meditations: February 29th

~ Patience ~

There is no fruit which is not bitter
before it is ripe.

Publilius Syrus

There are some things in life you simply cannot rush. In the early stages of my disease, I went through life like a steam roller ... impatiently starting one project after another. If there was something in my life that depended on the actions of another for resolution, it was excruciating while waiting on the decision. As a result, sometimes decisions were forced. I have made many bad decisions because of lack of patience.

I have learned that sometimes we have to turn decisions over to others ... we have to let go and let others take control. We must wait it out and hope that our decision to let go was a good one. Many times it is. Sometimes it isn't.

I have become a very patient person ... and sometimes that is to my detriment. It can be hard to find a middle ground in the decision making process. Snap decisions aren't good. Neither are those we sit on forever.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will patiently wait on my Higher Power
to direct me ... to guide me ...
and to help me with the decisions I must make.

~ Mari ~

Patience was one of the toughest things I've had to learn in recovery.  Being compulsive, I want what I want and I want it NOW.  Impulsive decision making is a hallmark of my disease as well.

In recovery, I've learned to let go & let God direct my life.  I can sit back & allow Him to take over as I wait to see how things pan out.  Am I always good at this?   NO!!!!!!!!!

An old AA saw is this:

TIME = Things I Must Earn

When I put in my TIME is when I earn the fruits of recovery.  When I stamp my feet, wanting it 'yesterday', I wind up spinning my wheels in frustration & wasted energy.

I like how Mari says how it's hard to find a 'middle ground' in the decision making process. Middle ground? Balance? Not a word that I'm overly familiar with! My program, however, forces balance ON me since I have such a hard time finding it myself! 

These days, it's easier for me to make a tough decision after praying on it for a while.  EasIER, not Easy, by any stretch of the imagination, though!

For today, I will give up MY control to God, and pray for the patience to not rush through the process.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Recovery Meditations: February 28th


The people who get on in the world are the people
who get up and look for the circumstances they want.

George Bernard Shaw

        There was a time, not so long ago, that my life was much different than it is right now. My weight was skyrocketing because my eating compulsion was out of control. I couldn't walk very far without huffing and puffing. My lower back hurt because my stomach pulled my spine out of alignment. My feet and ankles were swollen, my knees hurt, just standing was painful. I was hot all the time because my fat acted as insulation, keeping my body temperature high. My wife was hounding me about losing the weight, my doctor was taking her side, and even the kids at my son's daycare were asking me why I was so big.

        I didn't start the recovery process (and it IS a process!) until I got to the point where I was so uncomfortable with myself that I had to do something. It wasn't just that I was physically uncomfortable. I had to get past the comfort zone I had mentally and emotionally set up for myself; I had to get uncomfortable. I had to jump into the unknown, which was the most frightening thing I'd ever done.

        Sitting around, moaning about my circumstances and suffering the physical consequences of my weight, didn't get me anywhere. It was only when I became ready to see my life change, mentally, emotionally AND physically, that I began the footwork of this Program. That was the key to the beginning of my recovery, the getting up and actually doing something about it. When I took that first Step, the miracle began.

        One Day at a Time . . .
        I will take the necessary steps to maintain my
        recovery from compulsive eating.

        ~ JAR ~


Step 1:  We admitted we were powerless over food---that our lives had become unmanageable.

Step one is huge............admitting defeat...........admitting powerlessness over something that is stronger than I am.  Stronger than me, yes, but not stronger than God or the powerful program of recovery known as OA!

When I was eating compulsively and obese, I too was hot all the time, sweating, uncomfortable, thighs rubbing together, back aching, sleepless, anxiety ridden, stomach aches & acid reflux...........and the list goes on.

I had to hit rock bottom before I became willing to surrender & hold up the white flag.  My compulsion to overeat had beaten me down.  I was ready to put aside my way & take on a whole new way. 

Finding abstinence from compulsive overeating opened up a whole new life for me.  Working the steps and interacting with other COEs has literally saved my life.

For today, I choose recovery over practicing my disease.  As hard as abstinence can sometimes feel, the pain of compulsive overeating is far, far worse.

Recovery is a journey, not a destination. 

Monday, February 27, 2012

Recovery Meditations: February 27th


And we have ceased fighting anything or anyone ...

The Big Book, page 84

When one goes through life at full speed ahead as I have done, it's hard to really step back and look at one's life. Everything is happening too fast and each day seems to blend into the next and, before you know it, the next segment of life seems to take over.

When I began my Twelve Step recovery program, I found myself slowing down ... examining my life ... observing those around me ... and reflecting on my past. I began to know who I was and I didn't like one of the things I discovered: I was a fighter. I didn't accept people, places or things unless and until they met my expectations of what they should be. I tried to control situations that I should have walked away from. I clung to people I should have distanced myself from. I tried to manipulate things that were toxic to me, and make them un-toxic ... and, in the process, did myself great harm.

When I first read those words from the AABB, "We have ceased fighting anything or anyone," I felt it didn't apply to me ... because at that point, I hadn't categorized myself as a fighter. It took living and working the Steps to realize that. And it took living and working the Steps to take the action necessary to stop being a fighter.

Life is calmer now. Relationships are smoother. I sometimes miss the excitement of going through life as though I were on a roller coaster ... but I won't go back there. Serenity means too much to me. Fighting is something I have put away forever.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will direct my thinking and doing to those things in my life which will contribute to a meaningful and pleasant journey.

~ Mari ~


When I fight, I look for comfort in excess.  When I complain & find fault everywhere, I again look to my drugs of choice to cope with the 'injustice' of life.

Coming into program has helped me recognize this fighter trait in myself and to lay it to rest.  When I stop fighting & trying to control the world is when I surrender my powerlessness to God.

Living in conflict is harmful to me & to my program.  Having a goal of serenity prohibits me from fighting & causes me to calm down & chill out.

For today, I repeat the Serenity Prayer to find my inner balance:

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change;
The courage to change the things I can;
And the wisdom to know the difference.

As I go about my day, I will look for the good in others. I will not find reasons to fight or to buck the system, and I will have an easier time staying true to my food plan because of it.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Recovery Meditations: February 26th


Some memories are realities ...
and are better than anything that can ever happen to one again.

Willa Cather

When one is young, the world is large and the thought of exploring it is exciting. Each year that we live we add to our memory chest ... and by middle age those memories are substantial. I have found as I have grown older that I remember more of the good things that have happened in my life than the bad. The good things seem to become sharper as time goes by ... and the bad seem less so. It's almost as though the memory has turned into a "feeling" rather than a specific event.

When I work on the fourth and the eighth Steps, my life flashes before me and, like one of those calendars from an old movie, time whizzes by and people who have been part of my life hurtle through space ... each triggering a memory.

Memories aren't made more poignant by time. One might think that a decade of recurring events might be remembered with more clarity than a year ... but I have found in the case of my own memories that it is the quality and intensity of time that produces the kind of memories Willa Cather talks about. A year or two or three, given the right circumstances, can produce the feelings we love our memories to trigger, more than those experienced during a lifetime. And a lifetime of memories can be dwindled into just moments.

One Day at a Time . . .
I will cherish my memories ~ Because I may never experience the reality of some of them again.

~ Mari ~

One of the memories I cherish from childhood is being a part of the holiday festivities with my cousins. As an only child, I felt lonely & isolated much of the time.  But during the holidays, I felt like I belonged.......I felt like part of the crowd, and not lonely at all.

When I overeat compulsively, I sometimes think I'm trying to recapture the feeling I had at those gatherings so many years ago.

When trying to fill a hole in my soul, food isn't going to do it. When I need a hug, a bag of Hershey's kisses isn't going to fill the bill, either.

The memories that give me the warm fuzzies are the good ones, of course, but the bad ones aren't as dull and shadowy as perhaps they should be.

For today, I will take a trip down memory lane to recall the feelings I had during the finest moments of my life. The birth of my children, my marriage, my travels abroad..........and those moments in between the huge events..........the small & touching events that weave the fabric of my life.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Recovery Meditations: February 25th


Vitality shows not only in the ability to persist,
but in the ability to start over.

F. Scott Fitzgerald

Before coming into this program I was, and probably still am to a certain extent, a perfectionist, so one of the things I really struggled with is being able make mistakes without feeling bad about myself. So when I came into the program, I decided that I was going to do this program perfectly, and proceeded to do just that. I followed a meal plan, lost weight and worked the steps, and I really thought I had it made. But I hadn't counted on the fact that this is a disease, and it is both cunning, baffling and powerful. So when I had my first slip, I was devastated and felt a real failure.

Fortunately for me, with the help of many loving sponsors over the years, I have realised that I am not a failure if I slip, but I am only one if I fail to get up. This program has enabled me to learn that when I make a mistake, I am not that mistake, and that all I need to do is to pick myself up and start over. In the old days if I failed at a diet, I would never have been able to pick myself up so soon, and it would always be an excuse to carry on eating and start the diet again on Monday. Now I know that my abstinence can even start at the end of the day, rather than waiting till tomorrow, next week or even next month. I am slowly starting to let go of the guilt I feel when I slip, and am also learning to love myself even when I do flounder, because with the love and support I am given in this program, I know I can always start over.

One day at a time...
I will remember that I can start afresh any time I like, and don't need to feel as if I have failed.

~ Sharon ~


Abstinence is a daily commitment. When I struggle to stay true to my food plan, I remind myself I only have to deal with my life in 24 hour chunks.  I tell myself I'll have that food I'm craving 'tomorrow' and oftentimes, the craving subsides as my mind relaxes with the knowledge that it's not 'forever' I'm committed to; it's just one day.

If I slip, I get back on track right away........not on "Monday"..........because Monday never comes.  Giving myself the option to stay off plan for several days is just an excuse and an invitation to allow the addiction to rule my life for God knows HOW long!

An excuse is nothing more than a thin skin stretched over a bald faced lie.

I will never be perfect but I will always try to do my best and that IS good enough!   Instead of coming up with excuses to overeat, for today, I will come up with reasons to stay abstinent.  Nothing tastes as good as abstinence FEELS!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Recovery Meditations: February 24th


For perhaps if the truth were known, we’re all a little blind,
a little deaf, a little handicapped, a little lonely, a little less than perfect.
And if we can learn to appreciate and utilize the dog’s full potential,
we will, together, make it in this life on earth.

Charlotte Schwartz

So many times it feels that what we are being asked is too great. We can barely care for ourselves so how can we possibly reach out our hand to another? How many times have we cried out for someone else to please “handle it” because we just weren't able?

There are so many lessons that come by working with animals. They know nothing of dishonesty. They can't lie. They force us to be honest with ourselves. They depend on us completely, even when we feel we have nothing to give. And our reward? Unconditional love. There is something extra special about a rescued animal. It is as though they know that their life was in darkest peril and they have been saved. The gratitude shows in their eyes, their kisses of devotion, their entire being. Any kindness shown is rewarded. I think this is no different than a member of OA, especially the new members. Any kindness, and the gratitude flows. These newbies know they too have been saved. So perhaps the next time you feel you have nothing to offer, and that what you have been asked is too great, take a moment to reflect on the moment you were ‘saved’. How did you feel the first time someone reached out to you?

One day at a time...
I can use the memory of my first encounters with OA to find the strength to reach out one more time. I know the rewards will be infinite.

~ Mary W. ~


When I give back to others is when I get out of my own head & stop thinking about food.  Giving service feeds my hunger  like no food on earth can ever do!

As a human, it's tough to give unconditional love to another, but it is possible when I don't use judgment.  As compulsive overeaters, we all share our experience strength & hope together and we realize we are not alone to fight this disease.

2+2=5   Strength in numbers!

For today, I will reach out to another person to let him know that someone out there understands him. 

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Recovery Meditations: February 23rd


To the humble man, and to the humble man alone,
the sun is really a sun;
to the humble man, and to the humble man alone,
the sea is really a sea.
G.K. Chesterton

Before I started recovery, lack of clarity was all around me and within me. There was too much fear. I was unable to acknowledge: This is who I am, and this is what's going on, no more, and no less. I was afraid to name my husband's abusive behaviour. I was afraid to name my complicity in it. I was afraid to name who I was and what I wanted and needed, and I was afraid to name the behaviour of those around me who wanted me to fit into their mold. My husband was scared silly that one day the world would find out that we weren't the perfect family.

So I was not humble. I kept nurturing the fog that covered what was really going on. And boy, was I good at it. I kind of had an inkling that something wasn't right, so, semi-consciously, I made sure that my denial was watertight. I knew that if we pretended that we were a 100% perfect family, there might be suspicions. So I made sure I'd slip in a little problem here and there.

At one point, luckily, I allowed the bubble to burst. I started naming things, loud and clear. I named them to the police, I named them to my friends and family, I named them in my poetry. I started playing with another 12-step program.

But it took me another twelve years to name that I was an overeater. In those years I gained another 70 pounds (with some yoyo dieting thrown in, of course). Humbly admitting that, yes, really, I was an overeater, was the best thing I've done since ridding my family of my abusive spouse. I humbly admitted that I had been abusing myself with my eating behaviours. Now I can see clearly. (I can also see more clearly how wounded my ex spouse is, making it easier for me to work on forgiving him).

One day at a time ... I accept the gift of humility. I am not afraid anymore to look reality in the eye - and what I see is as right as the sun and the sea.

~ I.M.


Denial isn't just a river in Egypt.  I had to live in denial if the myth that my life was perfect was to be perpetuated.  I had a bad marriage but I was too fearful to end I used food & booze to anesthetize me from my misery.  I knew my ex-husband was mentally unstable, and getting progressively worse, but I felt paralyzed to take action.  Where would I go? What would I do? As a stay-at-home mom for 20+ years, my prospects for making a good salary were quite limited.

When the pain of what I was doing to myself outweighed the fear, that's when I finally took action & ended the marriage.  It took me another 6 years of independent living before I was able to humble myself to God and get sober & abstinent with food.

Looking reality in the eye is a scary thing.........but freedom lies within that reality! The truth is difficult to face.......but the pain of addiction is far more difficult to live with.  That's when change can be embraced.

When the student is ready, the teacher appears.  Until then, I yo yo dieted and relied on excess food & booze as my crutch.  I thought I needed those substances as much as I needed my legs to stand on. 

I was wrong about that, of course.  All I need in my life is my program of recovery, God, and my loved ones to support me.  And enough humility to realize that I cannot control the world any longer if I want to maintain sobriety.

For today, I pray to recognize the difference between my wants & my needs.  

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change;
The courage to change the things I can;
And the wisdom to know the difference.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Recovery Meditations: February 22nd


Anxiety is the rust of life,
destroying its brightness and weakening its power.
A childlike and abiding trust in Providence
is its best preventive and remedy.

Tyron Edwards

Like so many of us in OA, I grew up as a little adult. My parents didn't know better - treating me like an adult seemed a good way to them of both showing love to me and making their difficult post-war life easier. Providence was something that intervened once in a while, and in ways that were weighty and important. God was there - but God had to attend to serious matters.

There was little room in God's and my parents' life for the seemingly unimportant details of a child's world. I had no trouble internalizing that message. I learned very soon that no-one was going to take care of my "little" problems and anxieties, that I had to shove them out of the way, and that I could do that very well by daydreaming, by making sure I was the little adult my parents were so proud of - and by eating.

The trouble was that there were times when these coping mechanisms didn't work seamlessly and those anxieties would break through. Panic attacks were the result, and dogged attempts to do more of the insanity: more retreating from the world, more "adult" behaviour, more eating.

One of the things I'm learning in recovery is that paradoxically, in order to really grow up, I need to risk the vulnerability of being more childlike. I need to learn that my Higher Power is not too busy worrying about world peace to listen and deeply care about my little boo-boos. I need to, I WANT to develop an abiding trust that I am safe with and cared for by my Higher Power, like a baby in a mother's arms.

One day at a time ... I let go of the rust of anxiety so that like a child, I may marvel at and participate in the brightness and wonder of God's world.

~ Isabella ~


I grew up as an 'adult' also..........feeling the need to take care of the grown-ups instead of having them take care of me.  I turned to food for comfort, and sneak-eating to cover up my guilt & shame.  I was trained to believe that God was judgmental and didn't love me if I wasn't perfect at all times.  So, while I believed in Him, I didn't feel I could turn to Him for help because I wasn't a perfect person.  I felt that I was unlovable; in the eyes of God and in the eyes of the grown-ups.  Fantasy became my reality.  As a result, I fought a weight battle for 40 years.

OA opened my eyes, finally, to the truth of my distorted thinking.  To be 'as a child' nowadays is to recognize the dysfunction of my childhood and to let it embrace a youthfulness and joy NOW that I wasn't able to embrace back THEN.

I know that God is with me at all times, and loves me unconditionally, in spite of the fact that I am not, nor will I ever be, perfect.  In His eyes, I AM!

For today, I turn my life over to God for guidance.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Recovery Meditations: February 21st

" ... I was taught that the way of progress is neither swift nor easy."

Marie Curie

I have always been the queen of quick fix, so if I wanted something to happen, it had to happen today if not yesterday. So coming into the program was very hard for me, in that for the first time I have had to realise that recovery is not an overnight thing. For a perfectionist like me, that has been a very hard lesson to learn, in that I don't have to have perfect recovery. My journey in this program has been an up and down one, with many slips along the way, and everytime I have slipped, I have had to remember that I may think I'm a failure, but I'm only a failure if I fail to pick myself up. In the past if I made a mistake, I was a total and utter failure, but I know now that all I have to do each time is to pick myself up, dust myself off and start over.

The other thing I've learned in the program is that I also always need to remember where I came from, and when I look back, I can see the progress I have made. My self esteem is growing, and even though I still seem to slip back into the old character defects from time to time, they are nowhere near as bad as in the past. I am able to forgive people whom I thought I would never be able to forgive, and I make amends whenever the need arises, and as a result my relationships with people have improved dramatically.

One Day at a Time . . .
May I remember that in this program, it is always progress and not perfection that counts.
~ Sharon ~

The 'all or nothing' mentality is my trademark.  If I'm 'good' on a diet, then I'm very, very good.  If I'm 'bad', I am having a binge or eating myself into a coma for the entire day.  With OA, the slogan "Progress not perfection" holds great meaning for me.  If I slip, I don't have to consider myself a complete and utter failure.  If I'm not perfect, that doesn't signal the end of my commitment to abstinence.

Impatience is another hallmark of my disease.  I want what I want and I want it NOW please!  When I was finally ready to lose weight and get healthy, I had to force myself to stay off the scale & weigh in weekly.  In my haste and impatience, when I started a new diet, I'd want to see results immediately & then feel like a failure when I didn't.

With abstinence, what's the rush? There really is no goal except for peace of mind and self-improvement.  That takes time........recovery is an ongoing process and I never 'finish' working the steps or gaining self-awareness.

All I have to focus on is one 24 chunk of time: today.  I don't have to worry about what went wrong yesterday, or what I might want to eat tomorrow: I just have to focus on NOW.

For today, God help me to realize that I AM a work in progress & I'm a darn good one at that!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Recovery Meditations: February 20th

There were deep secrets hidden in my heart,
never said for fear others would scoff or sneer.
At last I can reveal my sufferings,
for the strength I once felt in silence has lost all its power.

Deidra Sarault

I've heard it said in program that we are only as sick as the secrets we keep. If that is the case, then I was very sick when desperation forced me through the doors of this wonderful fellowship.

Not one of my friends or family knew what I was doing around food, as most of it was done in secret, and I was always careful to remove all the evidence. I couldn't believe that anyone would love me if they knew what I was doing around food, and felt that I was either really bad or totally crazy, or both. But for the first time ever, I was able to come clean about what I was doing around food, and I wasn't judged or frowned upon. The love and acceptance I have received here has been totally overwhelming, but in addition I found out that others had done the same or similar things to what I had done, and so for the first time ever, I felt that I wasn't alone. Not only have I been able to talk freely about my food and what I had been doing, as well as what it was doing to me, but in the fourth and fifth step, I was finally able to share with another person my darkest deepest secrets, that for years I'd thought had made me this terrible person. It was in fact in sharing all the things that I'd thought of as so bad, that I came to realise that it was only my magnifying mind that had made them appear so, and that in fact they really weren't bad at all. I would never have found that out, had I not been in this program, and I'm so grateful for the relief that sharing all these things has given me.
One Day at a Time . . .
I will learn to get honest and share with my sponsor and others in this program, all the things that are bothering me, whether it be food or other issues, so I can be relieved of the pain that all my secrets are causing me.

~ Sharon

What I try to remember is.......we are not bad people trying to get good.........we are sick people trying to get well.  A big part of compulsive overeating is secrecy.  I never ate excessively in front of was always done secretively, and the evidence was disposed of.

A long time ago, I decided to eat ALL of my food in more hiding food or eating alone.  If I want to stay in recovery, I have to come out of the closet, so to speak.  It's not always easy, and my first inclination when I'm going to be alone is to have a binge.  Go to the store, load up on junk food, fill a trash bag with the evidence, and dispose of it before I'm 'found out.' 

I'd like to say I've never done that since finding recovery nearly 4 years ago, but that would be a lie.  I have my moments of relapse, where I wind up hating myself afterward.  But I have a program to get back to, friends to share my story with, and a food & exercise plan to follow that keep me sane. 

Progress, not perfection, is my goal for today.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

For Today: February 19th

Back of tranquility lies conquered unhappiness.
David Grayson

“Be optimistic……look on the bright side.”  I have often tried to follow that advice, but it seldom brought solutions to my problems.  It is difficult to get in touch with feelings, hold them up and examine them in the light of sobriety and abstinence.  But what a difference it makes!  The great phantoms of misery vanish under such scrutiny, not because I’ve given them a coating of optimism, but because I worked my way through to the source of my unhappiness.

I know that I cannot do it alone.  I need this program, my fellow OA members and my Higher Power with me every step of the way.  Only with that help am I able to deal with my difficulties and turn over what I cannot handle.  Serenity is letting go and letting God.

For Today:  Am I taking advantage of all the help OA offers in trying to get at the root of my unhappiness?  Many choices are open to me:  I can ask someone to sponsor me, go to a meeting, write an inventory or takes steps five through nine.


When I use the tools of my program and remain abstinent & work the steps, I find recovery from my compulsion to overeat.

I can't do it alone, nor do I want to.  I surrender my life to my Higher Power, one day at a time.

I can choose happiness or misery for myself...........I can be grateful for all the blessings I have, or, I can feel self-pity & disappointment with what I do not have.

I choose to face my stuff instead of stuff my face.

And, by the grace of God, I choose to stay in recovery for today.  Yesterday is gone & tomorrow isn't here yet. 

There are two days in every week which we have no control over----yesterday and tomorrow. today is the only day we can change.

For today, I will work my program to the best of my ability.

And so ends the 1 year commitment I made on February 20th, 2011, to type out and comment on one full year’s worth of readings from the OA book, For Today.  I have shared with you 365 readings…….all intended to speak the truth about the illness of compulsive overeating and to find solutions to achieving a better state of being.

I’ve had many followers over the past year; people who read this blog daily & hopefully, gained some insight & knowledge into the disease.  My comments were intended to give you my experience with compulsive overeating & my resulting recovery.  I hope that my comments were useful.  If I’ve managed to be of help  to one single solitary reader, then I’ve been successful with my endeavor in writing this blog.

Over the past year, I’ve had 2,443 views of this blog, with readers from  the United States, Russia, Thailand, Germany, Brazil, Poland, Malaysia, United Kingdom, China, Ukraine, South Korea,  Hong Kong, Latvia, India, Brazil, Chile, Taiwan & Canada.  Addiction knows no nationality………no financial status, no title and no gender, age or race.  Addiction only takes prisoners, leaving chaos & misery in its wake.  Whether we are addicted to food, alcohol, drugs, or gambling, we are one in the same person.  We suffer the ravages of the disease from which there appears to be no end.

I hope that, through the writings of Overeater’s Anonymous, you have found some level of strength to continue your journey.  Another reason to get up & do it again.  Amen. Do it again.  While the addictions never cured, they can be managed successfully, one day at a time.

Please join me in my new blog, where I will be posting daily readings from another wonderful OA source of inspiration, Recovery Meditations.  These readings are written by recovering compulsive overeaters and contain an awful lot of wisdom & truth, from people just like YOU, who are taking the journey to recovery through maintaining an abstinent lifestyle.

Cheers & a great big THANK YOU to all who have supported me by reading these daily blogs!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

For Today: February 18th

 What is actual is actual only for one
And only for one place.
T.S. Eliot

Do I think there is a certain way to be with people----the set smile, the too firm handshake---playing a part, well-practiced and for a specific return?  Why, then, is there a feeling of loneliness after a day with people?  Because that is not a satisfying way to live.  The alternative?   Trust.  Trust in my Higher Power to help me speak honestly.  Trust in the unselfish impulse, the spontaneous greeting, the invitation given or accepted.  A wish for a guarantee plays no part in trust.  Sometimes I need to forget the past and trust my perception of the moment, take the risk and act on it.

For Today:  In the same way I trust in my Higher Power to keep me abstinent, I let go preconceived notions and trust the moment for what it is.  I avoid the tendency to control a situation, so that thoughts and ideas may flow freely.


I might not be someone’s first choice,
…..but I am a great choice.
I may not be rich……but I am valuable.
I don’t pretend to be someone I’m not,
…..because I’m good at being me.
I might not be proud of some of the things
I’ve done in the past,
…..but I’m proud of who I am today.
I may not be perfect……
……but I don’t need to be.
Take me as I am………
Or watch me as I walk away.

For today, I will be me.

Friday, February 17, 2012

For Today: February 17th

To be obliged to beg our daily happiness from others bespeaks a more lamentable poverty than that of him who begs his daily bread.
Charles Caleb Colton

Where do I get my self-worth?  Do I rely on others to make me feel good?  Does my self-esteem go up and down according to what other people think of me?  Why are other people’s opinions of me worth more than my own?

When I find myself looking to another to make me feel worthwhile, I can ask myself why I need someone else’s opinion.  I take responsibility for my happiness and self-esteem, knowing that practicing the twelve-step program to the best of my ability each day is all I really need to feel good about myself.

For Today:  Practicing the OA principles in all my affairs means giving myself spiritual sustenance.

 Practicing the 12 steps & staying abstinent & sober makes me feel worthwhile because I know I'm behaving myself as God would like me to.  I maintain humility, forgiveness for myself and others, I make amends when necessary, I keep a relationship going with other words, I am the best ME that I can BE!  

When I look to others for validation, I dismiss the importance of finding it from within.  As the old AA saw goes, Other people's opinion of me is none of my business.  Sure, it's nice to be approved of and well liked, but it is not necessary to my well-being. 

What IS necessary to my well-being is my program of recovery, in its entirety. 

For today, I will work my program to the best of my ability & I will not seek approval from others. 

Thursday, February 16, 2012

For Today: February 16th

Prayer should be the key of the day and the lock of the night.
Thomas Fuller

Instead of directing the show for my benefit and letting self-will run riot, I will stop today and put aside thoughts of what I want and listen to God’s word for me.  God’s will for me is not greedy or envious, dependent or complaining.  To be free of the clamor of the world, its vanities and egos, I put myself in God's hands and my path is secure.  I need not waste time on worry about fear, but find a new joy in living.

Prayer is the only means of truly opening my mind and spirit, once clamped shut by pain and self-pity.  A once grim and stormy path is now lightened by love.

For Today:  I begin and end this day in conscious contact with God as I understand God.


God's will for me is to live a joyful life.  It is I who sometimes do not feel worthy to live that way.  When I bog myself down with negativity and self-pity, I reach for excess food to fill my body, rather than God to fill my soul.

When I pray, I ask God to please feed my hunger and restore my right mind.  Because compulsive overeating doesn't fill me up, no matter HOW much I eat. There is no sense of satisfaction or fullness, and I am left feeling hollow and worthless after a binge.  Compulsive overeating is temporary insanity, for sure.

When I wake up, I thank God for another day of abstinence and sobriety, and I do the same before I lay down to sleep.  Maintaining a conscious contact with my Higher Power  calms my mind, and helps me stay on track and focused.

God does for me what I cannot do for myself.  He helps me stay abstinent & sober, one day at a time.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

For Today: February 15th

Only God can fully know what absolute honesty is.  Therefore, each of us has to conceive what this great ideal may be-----to the best of our ability.
Bill W.

Truth is always the same; honesty changes with my awareness.  Honesty has many facets.  There is cash-register honesty, usually accompanied by making sure other people know about it.  There is let-me-tell-you-for-your-own-good honesty, which is hurtful, perhaps dominating.  There is one-sided honesty, which is a recitation of my spouse’s or lover’s or friend’s wrongdoings, sometimes dumped on a hapless OA meeting.

And there is self-honesty, which serves the purpose of keeping my life in order, and personal honesty, which is a sharing of feelings, experiences and strengths without egotism, self-pity or exaggeration.

For Today:  A fundamental principle of this program is to be as honest as possible with myself and everyone my life touches.


When people ask my husband how I lost 100 lbs, he tells them, "She finally quit lying to herself." He's right, of course..........until I got honest with myself, I wasn't able to lose one single lb.

The truth is: I am a compulsive overeater..........a food addict (junk food to be precise). Once I get started eating sugary foods, I can't stop. I cannot handle trigger foods 'in moderation' so I have to abstain from eating them entirely.  That's the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

If I want to stay in recovery, I have to be honest with myself.  While I don't strive for 'perfection', I DO strive to stay compliant with my food plan every day.  A little extra here and there WILL lead me back down the road to compulsive overeating and obesity.  Unless I am honest with myself, I am doomed to repeat the same behaviors that have brought me to my knees (and to obesity) time and time and time again.

For today, I pray to be truthful and honest with myself and others. I pray to NOT bury my head in the sand while burying mySELF in excess food.  I pray to live a long life, and not have my body buried before its time.