Tuesday, May 17, 2011
As most of you know I have been going to OA meetings. *overeaters anonymous* After three different groups I have found one that I have fallen in love with. Unfortunately it is in the place I will only be temporarily...but it has been awesome. :D
Now I'm a big girl - and...uh.....it's kinda noticeable. lol :) So when I went to OA I guess I expected a TON of BIG girls like me. Now in the first one - there were a couple - even some that were bigger than I. But most of them were average looking. Healthy even.
This of course lead me to raise an eyebrow but muddle through it.
The second one I went to - same story. Everyone was smaller than me. I started to think to myself - "Well damn....I must be a REAL overeater...."
This last place I walked in and saw healthy people and a slightly chubby one - and that was it. I'm like WTF???!!!!
Finally I called 'em out on it.
"Okay- did you guys REALLY ever have an eating disorder? You guys look amazing to me - you guys even look like some people that I might judge to have to not worry about food at all - and yet....here you are. What gives?"
The immediate smiles and silent nods to each other - borne out of a place of so much profound peace I felt it radiating through the room - left me standing in the sea of some secret I did not know. It was palpable. It was real.
"We DO have an eating disorder. And yes - most of us have been much bigger. Some haven't been as big as you and others were WAY bigger than you."
"So-" I shift from foot to foot. "Why are you guys still coming? Don't you ever 'get better'? Can't we ever lead normal lives" My voice caught and I quickly looked away.
They let me sit on that a moment. No one was in a rush to make me feel better. To laugh off my concern. To ease my emotion. They wanted me to feel my question. The ramifications of the answer.
Those few seconds stretched out into eternity and I was left with myself. My own wavering conviction. My desperate desire to change. The hopeless feeling of thinking I could never accomplish it. The rage against the label "overeater". I didn't WANT to be this. How could this happen?
"We come because for us it works. It gives us a level of sanity that we haven't had before. It grounds us. Reminds us of the work we have to do on a daily basis. Gives us a sounding board and support."
The silence around the words deepened...and I knew that the big one was coming.
"No - you never get better."
I blinked. Staggered against the weight of the words. Immediately fought them. Raged against them in my mind. Battled them back from my brain flaps.
"OA is much like AA. We are based on the same program. We were taught or came to a belief that doing the things we do - emotional eating, binging, secret eating, and overeating somehow 'helped us cope' with life. We come to the meetings to learn strategies on how to deal with these beliefs and to try to break them down and come into new ones. But we will never be like other eaters. We will get more aware and have bigger choices to make - but we will always be overeaters."
I sat heavily into a chair.
I stewed on these concepts for a few days. And I'm not going to lie - I wanted to fight it. And I am not even doing a good job of explaining how they explained it to me. After a few more meetings I have come to accept it.
This journey has never been about my will power. I have great will power. This journey has never been about my motivation or desire to change. That is always there. That is at the core of me. That is WHO I am.
This journey is about the inner struggle - the crazy demons that climb my inner castle walls. The ones that blot out the sky with their darkness and threaten to drown out my existence. it is about those sick, sickly sweet sirens that call to me - that wrap my core in a dank blanket of rot and decay.
It is THERE at THAT level that I fight and that I will have to continue to fight - for the rest of my life.
The good thing is - it gets easier. :)
At least that is what I hear. :)
"I just don't know if I can ever get to where you guys are. Honestly - is seems so easy for you. So natural. I'm sorry....I guess because I see you are at a healthier weight I must assume that it is easier for you. Or that your journey wasn't as hard as mine. I apologize. But you guys are like....annoyingly....I dunno....peaceful? Serene maybe? And I guess that drives me nuts. Because that is not what I feel at all..." the tears are streaming again.... "I guess I just feel so FAR away."
Again with the silent nods. Not in a stone cold way. Not in a "oh- let's amuse the child" way. But in a genuine. UNDERSTANDING way. You know that little half, sly smile people get when they know EXACTLY what you are talking about? I was SURROUNDED by people who GOT me.
"If you want what we got." Her brown eyes sent ripples of comfort as she spoke softly into the room. "You have to be willing to do whatever it takes to get there. Not anything crazy. No fad diets. No crazy commitments. If you want the "peace". You have to be willing to take an inventory of your life and decide what you are willing to let go of and what you are willing to change. You got this way because something isn't working. The good thing is you don't have to live in that world where food seemingly has power over you. You CAN change your life. You have to decide what you are willing to sacrifice and what you are willing to step up to. It IS possible. You just have to decide."
If you want what we got.....
These words have been echoing in my mind for the last few weeks.
If you want what we got.
I want it.