"Is there any remover of difficulties save God?" The first line of a prayer I say, and used to say often, as my life seemed nothing but tests and difficulties. It goes on to say that basically all is unfolding as it should, and to turn to your HP and trust that.
I have come to accept that Life is the test and if I just relax and trust, the outcome will be something that will benefit me in some way, it makes the days so much less anxious. It is the calm that allows me to see adversity as a benefit, a blessing. This was not always the case though, and my search for that calm led me to my drug of choice, food.
I think any addiction can be seen as the result of that search, a way to deal with a life that we find unbearable in some fashion. For me it was something of a God complex, you know, I thought I knew everything about everything, and how it ought to be, and if only people would see the wisdom in my view, then peace would engulf the planet and all would be well. Like I said, a God complex.
The disparity of my view and my reality was the cause of much anxiety, much consternation, and much anger, and therefore had to be sated somehow or it would drive me crazy. In essence it did as the "fix" for my problems simply compounded them, now instead of still having all those same problems, I had another one to go along with it.. my solution became my biggest problem.
Yet even when finally getting that one under some semblance of control, the others were still alive and well, and so I had to work on those next. Abstinence took care of the food problem, the steps are taking care of the others... the selfish, self-centered nature of me is the main one, and that one spawns so many others. My neediness, my lack of esteem, my intolerance, my anger, my ability to trust, my need to control, my inability to be vulnerable, my need to put others down so I can elevate myself, it goes on and on, but it all comes back to that selfish nature, the need to be right, and more importantly, the need to have others admit I am right.
I have always said I just want to be happy, but have never been. I was so busy working at being right the happy part just slipped on by. In the last four years, I am slowly letting go the need to be right, and really accepting the happiness as it comes my way now. The smile in the eyes of my child when she sees me, the kiss in front of her friends when I let her off at school, the hugs and cuddles that she initiates without any coaxing from me. Learning to be in the moment instead of always thinking of what I could or should be doing instead. It's been a hard lesson for me, but I am getting better about it, certainly there is room for vast improvement, but it is getting better.
I find even now, though I have a food plan that is just fine for me, some days my thoughts are still focused on the next meal, and so it means I still have some of that compulsion alive in me... when I notice this behavior, I try to focus on doing something else, anything to occupy my mind, something other than what I will be eating next. I guess that may never leave me, but it is manageable. I've heard in program that this is an incurable disease, but part of me always thought that I would be one in which the desire would leave me entirely if my spiritual state was maintained, now I'm not so sure anymore. ;) I am coming to believe it is just something in my makeup that will always be there, and something I will always have to be aware of, and that's okay with me today, cause I have a way to deal with it. It's when my expectations that it shouldn't be there anymore get so strong, that I struggle with it. It's those times when the food seems to call to me, singing with a full orchestra backing all those voices... it's at those times, I really have to turn to prayer and meditation to relieve the chaos in my head. Knowing that that is the solution today is reassuring, and that it works is nothing short of a miracle to me.
I never thought anything could replace the feeling I got from the food, the intensity of it, the sheer calm of it, the instant response I got from it, but as I practice this concept of prayer and meditation, I am finding it stronger, longer lasting, and more satisfying, and THAT is amazing.
When I came into this program it was to lose weight, not to fix all my living problems, but that's why I continue to come now. The food obsession was just a symptom for me. working on the root problems is what will ultimately "fix" the eating problem, or at least help to manage it. "I came for the vanity, but stayed for the sanity." I love that slogan, and it really says volumes. Growth is the key, the slow process of changing my thinking, seeing with new eyes the old things that continue to crop up, and finding something good in everything is the result.
The serenity prayer says, "to change the things I can", and I find that there is only one thing I can change, and that's me, how I react to what happens to me is all I can change, and after reacting differently to the same situations over and over, I find that it becomes how I react to that situation now automatically, it becomes a new part of my personality, it changes me. First the action, then the result. It goes to the idea of "act as if", and eventually it becomes a part of who I am. I always balked at that, because it made me feel I was a fake, but I wanted to change, and that's how it happens I guess, I just decided to act like would like to act if I were a better person, and pretty soon I became a better person, not perfect, but better.
It's an interesting journey isn't it?, and I'm looking forward to what's next.
Keep coming back!
love and hugs,
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