Posts about Recovery

Abstinent Anywhere, Through Anything

I love my morning bus ride to work. I get to have someone else weave through the rush hour traffic while I relax. Relaxing was something I never did before FA. I was always racing to my diet club meeting, speed walking up and down the city streets, or heading to the gym to work off the slice, or plate, or cup of whatever I had just eaten.  But today, I wasn’t doing any of that, and I hadn’t done it in the seven years since I’d found FA. Today, I was smiling at strangers, and feeling grateful for the fact that I could sit in one bus seat without spilling over into the next. In fact, I even have room to tuck my purse and my lunch bag next to me every day. Today was like most days in recovery. I had packed my lunch last night, and this... Continue Reading



Living Without You

It was the spring and I had been in Program for two weeks. Waiting for the meeting to start, I heard another newcomer share how she loved the program and how she was never hungry. “What’s she getting to eat?,” I wondered, because my hunger pangs were ever-present. “My sponsor is great! So loving and understanding,” she continued. Really? Give me a break. I felt like my sponsor was a dictator. Just that morning, she talked to me about how to do the required reading correctly. Yesterday she said I had to weigh my food precisely—4 ounces of protein, not 4.1, not 3.9, but 4.0 exactly! As I sat there, that song started in my head again. Michael Bolton’s voice singing nearly non-stop for almost a week now: “How am I supposed to live without you now that I’ve been lovin’ you so long?” His song was about unrequited love;... Continue Reading



Journey to Recovery

“This program is portable, and you don’t have to stay home to stay abstinent.”  I heard those words early on in FA, and took them to heart.  Travel brought me into recovery and has been a constant part of my story. My food addiction set in when I was six years old.  I was a shy, introverted, highly sensitive girl. I was afraid of my teacher and of being different from the other students.  I remember coming home from school to my mother’s cooking and experiencing a feeling of warmth, refuge, and love.  Those food associations became deeply ingrained in me.  A boy called me “fatso” for the first time at age six, and I immediately replied, “I’m not fat – I’m big boned.” It was not until I came into FA that my family and I learned that I was not big boned after all. My real body was... Continue Reading



Another Break

 The break started with a memory of a place and a food connected to a moment saturated in grief for my spouse, who had passed seven years earlier. It was our favorite haunt. I had driven passed this food place many times and had learned to say, “This is not my food.” However, late at night three months ago, unhappy with my lonely life, I wished to connect again with my past. I thought that I deserved this one memory, and I indulged in a binge. Afterwards, I was filled with the self-loathing realization of what those mouthfuls would cost me. I then couldn’t qualify or get up in front of the room to tell about my 50-year struggle with food, shame, and compulsion. This break undermined my confidence and sense of usefulness. I couldn’t sponsor, share, or lead a meeting. I was at my goal weight, but couldn’t share... Continue Reading



Maternal Miracle

I spent the majority of the afternoon planning a vacation my mother and I are taking, a process that has been a step in my recovery toward practicing better communication. I haven’t had much practice in this area, as I am single and have lived alone through the majority of my recovery. My present roommate is helping me practice kind communication, but I am a newcomer when it comes to saying what I mean instead of saying things in a mean way. Today my mom and I spent an hour searching the computer and trying to book our vacation. My mom kept telling me what to do, but the computer wasn’t acting fast enough to keep up with her directions. It was a miracle that I was able to calmly state that the technology wasn’t keeping up with our demands. I let her know that if she wanted to, she... Continue Reading