There was a time when I asked God to handle only the impossible. How dare I ask someone as busy and important as God to help me with a simple thing like food? After all, this was just a matter of using a little will-power ... of pushing myself back from the table. Or so I had been told.
As I began to trust my Twelve Step program more and more, I found myself turning over to God the issues which triggered my compulsive eating. It was with great relief that I began to surrender my food and other problems to Him. It was with enormous gratitude that I realized what a gift it is to finally be able to give up control and put my life in my Higher Power's hands.
ONE DAY AT A TIME . . .
I relinquish control of my food. I relinquish control of people. I relinquish control of my life.
How many times are we gifted with newcomers to our meetings? They are so easy to see as they huddle in the back of the room -- usually as close to the exit as possible. Their over sized coat is a good giveaway, especially in July. Their eyes show the fear and anxiety that we all felt. Sure, we made it, and so can they.
I remember the elder who first said those magical words to me -- those two simple words -- "Welcome Home." The warmth and safety those words held were immense. I felt that my body was huge, and I was embarrassed in a room full of people who looked very similar to me...but my eyes could not see that. They were filled with tears because of those two words. Welcome home. Whoever that person was, I have two words for you, "Thank you."
What can you do to make a newcomer feel welcome to your meeting? Let us not forget that all-important first hug. I remember mine; do you remember yours? It felt good, I'll bet. So welcome the newcomer and let them know they are home.
***How do you do your part to welcome newcomers into our fellowship?
“Balance activity with serenity, wealth with simplicity, persistence with innovation, community with solitude, familiarity with adventure, constancy with change, leading with following.” ~ Jonathan Lockwood Huie
How has OA helped you create balance in your life?
I had no confidence or satisfaction in myself. I covered my lack of self-respect with absurd and harmful behaviors. I shielded myself from the respect and love of others by using these behaviors. I wanted to hide from the truth I knew - that I was behaving badly and dishonestly.
Having begun this program which restores us to sanity, we have stepped into a new realm of learning to love and respect ourselves. We have come to realize that we gain self-respect by working the Steps, surrendering ego, doing service for others, and relying on a Higher Power. Our lives become useful, our hearts are healed, and we are filled with respect for who we have become.
ONE DAY AT A TIME . . .
May I come to realize I am worthy of self-respect because I am doing the right things for the right reasons... and giving credit to my Higher Power.
This past memorial day, there were 12 of us in our local OA fellowship that gathered to walk together in an organized community walk. It wasn't the charity that mattered or the length of the walk (5K), it was the taking of one step at a time together as a fellowship. The weather was great and even some of our families/friends came with us for our outing. Some of my friends in OA came dressed in jeans, some in shorts and even one in gold spandex. No matter who we are, where we come from or even how we dress, we are all compulsive overeaters. Walking a 5K with my friends in recovery feels good, even if some fall a few feet behind or some skate way ahead of me. I'm just glad they are on the journey with me.
Yesterday I returned from a wonderful vacation filled with hiking and camping...two activities I never could do before recovery. I wanted to do both but my disease manifested itself so that I physically could not hike more than a 1/4 mile and mentally I could not handle being the least bit "uncomfortable". As many vacationers were taking pictures of the Grand Canyon from the top of the rim, I was hiking down the rim, across the Colorado River and back up the rim for an 11 hour hike of my life. I experienced the Grand Canyon as I had dreamed...actually beyond my wildest dreams. On a humorous note, the hike was so exhausting that when I had taken the last step back up, I said to my partner, "let's get the hell out of here, I've seen enough of this canyon and it's seen enough of me!". - Rachael W.
"In 2001, I found a poem about AA written by my grandmother. My Family was full of alcoholics, so I vowed to always watch my drink. My father died in a fire. He was drunk, and the cigarette he was smoking caused the deadly fire. Alcohol is not my problem, and I hate smoking. But I am a compulsive overeater.
Being a man kept me away from OA for many years. I thought a man shouldn't worry about bingeing, and what real man throws up to try to control his weight? When I hit rock bottom weighing 341 pounds, it didn't matter. I was desperate and needed help, and I discovered I'm rarely the only man in the room.
I went to my first OA meeting in 1996. Thinking about Steps Four and Nine kept me in-and-out and uncommitted for years. In fact, I never heard the work "Sponsor" until this last time around. Having someone guide me through the Steps has kept me honest, open and willing to believe in the Twelve-Step process.
When it was time for me to be a sponsor, I made up a rule that I would only sponsor men. I was afraid of the intimacy involved in the process and didn't think it was a good idea for me to sponsor women. I no longer keep that rule, and my sponsor is a strong, recovered woman. I sponsor anyone, but it's smart to use common sense when sponsoring. Remember, real men recover!" -James
-Lifeline, November 2009
Men - Do you ever feel like the "Odd Man Out" at a meeting? Did you have a difficult time finding a sponsor? How has your perception of the sexes of OA changed since you joined OA?
Welcome to the NEW Butterfly Blog! Here you find posts from fellow OA'ers, OA and AA literature, slogans, quotes, etc. that you can actually comment on! Your post or comment could be your daily writing or perhaps inspire you to journal!
If you would like to submit a comment, please click the link next to the title of the post. If you would like to submit an entry please email CincyButterfly@gmail.com