Before OA: 237 pounds (108 kg) of miserable me is sitting in my dirty, empty apartment. I don't have the time or the desire to clean or decorate my living space. I have a day off work, and it's a regular binge day. My stomach is stuffed from eating a breakfast of leftover binge food. I sit in front of the TV watching mindless shows to keep from acknowledging the guilt I feel over the junk I have just eaten. I feel tired because I didn't put nutritious food in my body to give myself energy. I feel lonely because I have trapped myself in an unhealthy, unhappy relationship with an emotionally unavailable man. He doesn't even want to spend time with me today. The TV is my best friend.
After OA: 165 pounds (75 kg) of peaceful me is writing this Lifeline article in my clean, beautiful apartment. I take pleasure in a home full of delightful art and pleasant reminders of my travels and adventures. I hire a maid to keep my apartment clean while I work and go to school. My priorities have straightened. I have a day off from school, and I offered the day to my Higher Power this morning in my Step-Eleven meditation time. My stomach is full of a warm, nutritious breakfast that I ate mindfully while sitting at the breakfast table with my loving husband. The day is full of self-care actions - studying and having pedicure and acupuncture appointments.
However, these tasks don't define me. They simply enrich my life now that I have the energy to do them. I feel ready to explore my day because I have healthy food in my body. I feel loved and supported by my Higher Power, husband, friends and OA Fellowship.
My before and after story is about before and after I connected with my Higher Power. OA allowed me to grasp a foothold on the spiritual path. Before program I attempted to meditate and commune with the divine, but I was too numbed out with food to feel my Higher Power's presence.
For those of you who are still suffering, please know there is hope. If I can recover from compulsive overeating, you can too. Wishing you peace today!
This article appeared in Lifeline, January 2009, p. 5. Copyright Overeaters Anonymous Inc.