The Recovery Group

Question Two

Dear Web Visitors and Loopies,

My name is Shana and I am a compulsive overeater. I am grateful to have found the OA program of recovery and part of my program is sharing it with others.

Over the next eight months (approximately), I will be sharing with you the 30 Questions as given to me in years past. These questions helped introduce me to the first three steps of OA, and helped me name ... and claim my feelings about myself and my disease of COE. As I post these weekly shares, I hope that they will bring responses from YOU and that you will share your answers to these questions here on the loops.

If I didn't mention this last week, you will need the AA Big Book and the AA Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions book to answer many of these questions. The purpose is to get you involved in the books and what is between their covers; the purpose also is to help you reach physical, emotional and spiritual recovery.


A.) What is well?
B.) Is fat acceptable in your life?
C.) Can you accept the way you are?

A.) Well, to me it is pretty simple. Well is to wake up in the morning without my first thoughts being of my weight, fear, desperation and resolutions. Well to me is having my focus on life and the present, not on inward struggle and the past and future. Well to me is being humble to a HP, being excited to see what this day will bring, and well to me is knowing instinctively what to do in any situation without acting out of panic, resentment and fear. I can be well with HPs grace and blessings, one day at a time, doing the footwork...and knowing that my HP would never give me more than I could handle.

B.) Fat is just not acceptable in my life. I feel imprisoned in a fat body; the real me shaking the prison bars screaming to set me free. I feel judged in my poundage, I feel "less than" in my skin, I feel so caught up in my nightmare that I cannot live in the day. No, fat is just not acceptable. Sure, my health issues (as in cholesterol, arthritis, etc.) also make it difficult to find fat acceptable...but more than that, well, I wanna be thin..ner.

C.) Now, you have to remember that I am answering this question (once again) 26 years into program. So, do I accept the way I am? I do accept the way I am, and I will tell you what I went thru over the last few years before I came back to OA and Journey to Recovery, so that you will understand why.

I realized a few years back that if I was ever to attain abstinence again I needed to begin loving and accepting myself now (this was back in 1997, I believe). I knew that by not loving myself exactly as I was, fat and all, that I could never expect that I would give myself the gift of abstinence over any long period. That I would always fall back into the fat because I had not attained the ultimate purpose of love myself the way that my Higher Power does love me. I didn't want to be "sick" anymore, and part of that sickness was to look into the mirror and give myself hateful faces and stares. My self-absorbed ego would find disdain in every face I met, in every word that I would misconstrue against me, resentment was my middle name. I knew it was all to do with the fact that I couldn't love myself, wouldn't love myself, the way I was.

I began by looking into the mirror and saying, "I love you, Shana, exactly the way you are." OH, yes I did that. I looked at my body and found parts and pieces of me that I could think of as "okay." I always dressed in clothing that became me, always put on my make-up, did my hair, bought myself jewelry and fun accessories, went for manicures and, well, I just decided that if I waited for me to be "okay" enough in my eyes to have these things and do these things...I may die before I got there. So, I "acted as if"...and it worked.

My self-esteem started to grow despite the weight on my body. In fact, this is so funny (but sad), when I would look at pictures of me taken at a party or vacation, I would be downtrodden for a day or two because I didn't know who that person was! I didn't see myself that heavy anymore, and this was a difficult part to pass through. But, I did. I did because I knew I had to in order to live and be well.

So, when you ask me today "Can you accept yourself the way you are?" YOU BETTER BELIEVE IT! And I hope that you can find it in your heart to give yourself this gift. The road, for me, in losing the weight is slow, but I am there heart and mind and soul. Yet, I have no illusions, either, of how I look in reality...and I love me anyhow.

Love in recovery,





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