Reflections on the Journey

Different Paths To Peace

Dear Friends in Recovery,

I am Leeanne, I live in Israel, and I am a grateful compulsive eater/overeater in recovery. In trying to gain the approval of other people, I have sometimes bent and swayed. The result has been a dislike of myself that ran even deeper than the resentment I felt for those to whom I deferred..

Those are my principles.
If you don't like them, I have others.
Groucho Marx, 1890-1977

It may sound funny when it is Groucho Marx who says it. But I, like many a compulsive eater/overeater, know how pathetic it feels to live that statement.

Damaged by this disease -- which is a part of me though at times I thought it was gone -- I have often mistrusted myself and placed my faith in others who truly did not deserve that trust. The betrayal I later felt was due to the real source of the disappointment: me. It was not the others who betrayed me; it was I who betrayed myself by not having faith in my own deep intuition.

But this disease -- it makes me sabotage even that. I think to myself: making amends, setting things right, is not good enough, because it's not the same as never having made the mistake. To re-glue the vase is not the same as never having broken it.

When I rely on myself and my own Higher Power, and when I spend time thinking things through with the help of that Higher Power of mine, there is no question of what the right direction is. Looking for peace, I think about the Serenity Prayer backwards.

Higher Power of mine, grant me the wisdom to discern
what I can change and what I cannot;
Grant me the courage to change the things I am able to change;
Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change.

While aesthetically I may dislike the flow of this phrasing, the fighter in me is pleased by it. Reversing the serenity prayer makes me focus on how important it is to try to make an honest assessment of reality. The reversal also reflects my battle with compulsive eating: attaining serenity is the stage that takes the longest, and that request (and quest) for serenity is a constant reminder to me of Step One, admitting that I am powerless in this specific area of my life.

Please, Higher Power of mine, grant me the wisdom to discern reality, the courage to battle that which is written on the wind, and the serenity to live at peace with that which is written in stone.

Reflecting ... Learning ... Living

Love in recovery,

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