I went for my walk yesterday, and kept getting this stabbing pain in my big toe, then it would move back to the ball of my foot, then back to my big toe... I thought it was maybe a bone spur or something, and I put up with this for a while before realizing it must be a pebble or something inside my shoe. So, did I stop right away and fix it? Nope!! I didn't want to stop. There was no place convenient to stop. If I stopped my dog would take a dump on someone's yard and I didn't have a plastic bag. It would make me late getting back home. It would throw off my morning schedule yet again as it seems more and more that had been happening and I just wanted to have things go like I planned for once. mmmmm.... sound familiar? All kinds of reasons why I couldn't or didn't want to slow down long enough to correct a small problem. I finally came upon a large driveway, where the dog couldn't reach the grass, and I did stop and remove this tiny little pebble, put my shoe back on and continued pain free, asking myself why I hadn't done that sooner as it made the walk SO much more pleasant. It was a relief in fact that increased my speed and changed my mood all at the same time.
Don't I do this with my program? There was a small pebble in my program, well actually a major pebble, that one we call abstinence. I put up with this pebble for almost 10 years in program, refusing to remove this annoyance in order to make the journey more pleasant. Keeping certain foods on my list of "I can manage this food okay if I just limit it" which translated to "I can put up with this emotional turmoil well enough because I don't want to give up that particular food" syndrome, yet I was only mildly aware of the constant anxiety it produced in me until I finally removed it. The difference was like night and day and just like removing that rock from my shoe, I was asking myself why I didn't do it sooner. Why was I so reluctant to have a food plan? Why was I so unwilling to simply eliminate foods I knew were questionable? Why was I so unwilling to be happy and free?
Questions that I am still finding answers too even after four years of abstinence. Questioning why I still have desires for foods that are no longer on my food plan, haven't had any of them for four years, and most of the time don't even think about them, but there are those occasions that a thought will pop into my head and I will start to ponder why it would be okay to have some of that now. My main triggers are proteins and fats and the food that keeps popping into my head is pizza and cheeseburgers. I find it interesting that both of these items are beef or beef by-products, and beef was gently removed from my program over about 2 years. It was not a conscious effort on my part to do so, I simply preferred other protein sources and when given the choice would more often choose the turkey or chicken, or pork as my protein. The beef would leave me feeling lethargic and I simply got to the point of not wanting to feel like that anymore, so that's one pebble I did remove without any major calamity or angst on my part, it just kinda happened. Yet these thoughts do pop up once in a while that a pizza would be just the thing for me. Cunning, baffling, and powerful, AND persistent!!
I keep working the program and maybe someday these thoughts will go away entirely, but even if they don't I know today they are just thoughts, and don't require me to do anything about them. The program is my buffer these days between thoughts and actions, and I choose recovery more often than ever. I am not perfect about it, but constantly getting better at it. My "slips" are always in my heavy handed measuring, the willingness to still take that little bit extra, the extra piece of walnut on my cereal, the milk that pours over the edge of the cup, the extra half ounce of meat... it's starting to bother me a bit that I have this desire still for "more". I see that as the real disease here, the disease of more. Doesn't matter how much I get of anything, I always want more.. if a little is good, more would be better right? It was my upbringing, and it is in my makeup. It is the disease personified I think.
I ask my HP for the willingness to be grateful for whatever comes my way, and to be sated by it, and to remove this unceasing desire for more all the time. I am confident that someday it will not be an issue, how soon that comes to pass though is not up to me, but I find when things become uncomfortable for me, that's when I move in program, and this is making me more and more uncomfortable these days, so I know there is some growth about to happen, and I am looking forward to it. I keep thinking of the acronym A.F.G.O. (another friggin' growth opportunity) but I'm beginning to leave off the negative connotation today... and it's just A.G.O. now. ;) Looking forward to change with anticipation instead of dread is a definite benefit of working this program.
Keep coming back, the miracles are waiting for us.
love and hugs,
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