~ FROM OUR EDITOR ~
Dear friends in recovery,
Welcome to the December edition of Serendipity!
I am delighted to say that, with this issue, we begin our third year of
publishing a newsletter of The Recovery Group. Serendipity was TRG
founder Mari's brainchild. In the autumn of 1999, she decided it was time
that The Recovery Group had its own newsletter, and tasked Anne S. and
Cheryl to come up with ideas -- I volunteered to "help." The four of us
spent a lot of time coming up with the format, and it has changed little
in the past two years. Our first issue was published on December 1, 1999,
and we have never looked back! I am so very grateful to all of you who
have contributed to making this newsletter a success. Without your help,
we could not have completed 24 months of carrying the word to other
compulsive eaters around the world through this wonderful newsletter.
In this edition of Serendipity, Mari talks about Serendipity's first two
years and gives way too much credit to its editor! Cate, writing for
TRG's Administrators, celebrates Serendipity's anniversary and each of you
who have contributed to its success, and also reminds us of the five rules
of netiquette. Our loop spotlight of the month is Big Book and Recovery,
which is a loop for those who want to study the Big Book of Alcoholics
Anonymous in depth. We have included an invitation to participate in the
wonderful Meditations Project, and encourage all of you to contribute at
least one meditation to this wonderful project. Next comes Letters to the
Editor, and we are fortunate to have one letter to share with you this
month. In Danny's Corner, in his conversation with God, Danny writes
about resentments and our choice to resent or not to resent. Then, in the
Tools of Recovery, an article reprinted from the August 2001 Lifeline
talks about that one more meeting on the road to a miracle!
In a special anniversary edition of shares from TRG members, Mickie shares
a tribute to the Relapse and Recovery loop, Loretta M. shares on her
recovery, Addy in Canada writes of "serenity of the mind, simplicity of
the heart, tranquility of soul," Nola writes of thanksgiving, Marlene
shares a wonderful poem on a Christmas candle and wishes our Christian
members a joyous holiday, John shares a tribute to The Recovery Group,
Marlene again shares on Santa and his compulsive eating and the meaning
she finds in the reindeer, and Nola shares with us her translation of the
Serenity Prayer. Thank you all for contributing to what is a very special
edition of Serendipity!
In the Literature section, we conclude our 12 months of The Promises from
the Big Book, as well as an inspirational Step Twelve from Reflections on
the Twelve Steps of Recovery. This month's edition ends with directions
to on-line meetings and a current list of the meetings, as well as contact
information for the latest changes to the meetings list, OA and TRG
contacts, and the Serenity Prayer.
I am so very grateful to Mari for her concept, for her support month after
month in getting this newsletter out, and for her design of the wonderful
web site. I am also grateful to the administrators for their monthly
participation, to Danny for his wonderful conversations with God, to Anne
and Cheryl for all their help in launching Serendipity, to Marty for
getting the newsletter translated for the web site each month, and of
course to Gary for getting Serendipity up on the web. I also want to
thank all of you who have contributed your shares, because without you we
would not have a newsletter! So keep those shares coming - send them to
SerendipityNewsletter@yahoogroups.com. As I said last month, we have
thousands of members with so much ESH to share - if each of you would send
just one share, on a topic of your choice, we would have enough ESH to
last for a long time to come!
Peace, my dear friends.
Love in recovery,
~ FOUNDERS CORNER ~
A TRIBUTE TO SOMEONE SPECIAL
Dear Recovery Friends,
I look on Serendipity as something of a miracle. Two years ago when we
were discussing having a little newsletter, I wasn't sure we had enough
month after month to sustain it. Putting out something of quality with
article after article of inspiration, support and recovery shares is no
Little did I know then that one of the most tenacious young women I've
run across would be the driving force behind Serendipity .... and that
issue you are now reading is the 25th she has so carefully nurtured each
month and wrapped up and presented to us as a gift.
I want to present a tribute from all of us to Suzanne, the Editor of
Serendipity. In addition to being one of the best writers I've ever
known, a compassionate human being, a loyal Trusted Servant, an animal
devotee, she is an attorney by profession and the personification of the
kind of woman I admire so much.
It is simply mind boggling how this one person can find the material, do
the editing and format the newsletter in such a way that it is timely
enough to be sent out monthly to all of us yet timeless enough so that
each issue put on our website will be as fresh ten years from now as it is
I've always heard that when you want someone to do something right, find a
busy person. Suzanne is that ... yet I have never heard her even once
an excuse for not doing her job. She works full time in a challenging
career, is Coordinator of a Recovery Loop, Co-Editor of Recovery
Meditations, and just recently she wrote me to see if it would be "okay to
continue her service for yet another year as Editor of Serendipity?" That
was an absolute first! I've never had anyone ever ask ME if they could
continue a job and I smiled all day long.
Congratulations to Suzanne for the extraordinary job she has done for two
years ..... and Happy Birthday, Serendipity.
Love in recovery,
~ FROM OUR ADMINISTRATORS ~
Dear Friends in Recovery ~
We celebrate with each of you as we complete the second year of our TRG
newsletter, Serendipity. The idea of a newsletter began with one person,
and grew into a reality which includes and reaches far and wide. It is
with gratitude and wonder that we remember the many people who have
contributed in this sharing of recovery which reaches so many people
across our globe.
Most of us have become more aware of the unrest in our world in recent
months. Here in The Recovery Group, we come together to simply share the
miracle of recovery. With our many participants and Trusted Servants, we
gather to focus on the sharing of our E.S.H. and to freely pass along what
have been so generously shared with each of us. With the steps as a
personal guide for each individual, and the traditions as the guide to our
group experience, we are able to share recovery without the influence and
effects of outside issues.
We have recently received a simple 5 step guideline to effective loop
sharing which we would like to pass along to you today.
FIVE RULES OF NETIQUETTE
We hope this will be helpful to you as you continue to participate in the
- As a courtesy to those who like to print
shares, please delete the original message before
sending the new one.
- Change the subject line to reflect what you
are sharing about.
- Send personal shares to the person's personal
e-mail, not to the whole loop.
- It is hurtful (no matter how well intended)
to copy a person's share and send it back to the loop
with admonishments. We always want to put principles
before personalities and treat others as we want to
- At no time is it appropriate to share with
someone off the loop what has been shared on the loop.
Please write to the person and ask permission and
then remove any personal addresses or names. We
respect each other's anonymity not matter whether it
is in a f2f meeting or on the web.
We would also like to extend a special note of thanks to all who have
contributed to the success of Serendipity. We hope that each of you
have enjoyed sharing your recovery in service to others through
Serendipity. It is a beautiful example of many people reaching out to
others through their sharing and service.
In Recovery ~
The Recovery Group Administrators ~ Cate, John, and Patt
~ LOOP SPOTLIGHT ~
~ Big Book and Recovery ~
The mission of the Big Book and Recovery Loop is:
We hope to bring the Big Book to you as Compulsive Eaters, so you may
explore the endless spiritual, mental, and physical tools contained within
this Big, Blue Book.
- To read the Big Book section by section, through the eyes of a COE. For
instance, the word alcoholic will be changed to the words Compulsive Eater
... the word alcohol to food.
- To gain from the experience, strength, and hope (ESH) of the AA founders
... ESH that is used today, in our existing fellowships
- To explore the evolution the Big Book's spiritual foundation that was
developed and used by the founders..... and by people in recovery
- To learn the answers to questions such as what are spiritual tools? how
does this apply to my addiction? how do I work these Big Book ideas into
my recovery journey?
The path is endless. The Journey is worth it.
To Join, send a blank e-mail to:
or go to:
~ DANNY'S CORNER ~
~ To Resent or Not to Resent ~
I'm angry this morning and went to my bed angry last night. I am not
responsible for other people's actions nor their mindset, only my reaction
to them. By the way, good morning, and thanks for another day to do with
as You will it. I may at times be cranky, may even revert to my old ways
of lying, stealing and cheating. I am, however, truly grateful for this
life I have been given. The reason for my anger is unimportant. What is
important is what I choose to do with same. That, my God, is why that
anger is coming to lay at Your feet, my present for You, just for today.
There is that old question again, "How important is it?" The act that
prompted my anger is really not important, however, the reason for it is.
Here is the difficult part, I have absolutely no way of changing the
attitude of another person. BINGO!!!!! So do I sit and erect the
foundation of a wonderful resentment, one which I could and would
eventually eat over, or just say my favorite word and go on with being
happy, joyous and free?
Hmmm. The woman You sent to run my life continues to spend money on junk
for the house and insists on stuff for me that I would never buy or use.
Now You know if I don't make a fuss over this junk her feelings will be
hurt. Yes, I know, make a fuss. In a short while I'm to wake her so she
can pick up her gang to do the shopping thing and she will be gone all
day. Three generations of females turned loose on the outlet stores, where
for some unknown reason they think they are saving money. The way to save
money is to bank it, not spend it. Geez, even I know that much. They
will be out of my hair, and my football games will be more enjoyable
without the constant interruptions. Thanks.
I'm not as angry as when we started here so at least the stress of anger
is lessening. I really need to let go of things I cannot change, which
comprises about 99.99% of my life. Acceptance, acceptance, acceptance.
NOW!!!! There is some battle raging in me, and, to be sure, if I have my
way the fight that ensues will cause much damage. It is not worth it, so
where then shall I place this crap? Once again, at Your feet, realizing
this may be a process to be repeated many times this day. So be it, I
accept, don't like it, but do accept and will not start a war over it.
WHEW!!! Sometimes it is not easy being me, especially when the focus of
my anger is going about doing just fine. Well, You handle it and allow me
the wisdom to shut up and seek the knowledge of and power to do Your will.
Watch over the ladies today as they drive my new car, as well as the
family, friends, fellow loopies, those who still sit in anger and those I
just don't like.
AND WHY NOT......
~ TOOLS OF RECOVERY ~
Just One More Meeting
Because of a schedule change, I went to a different meeting this week.
During the day at work, I thought a number of times: "Maybe I'll be too
tired at the end of the day. Maybe I should go home. What can I get out
of just one more meeting?" But I decided not to pass up the opportunity
and headed off to the meeting after work.
The topic was fellowship. Several people I knew well were there, as were
a couple of newcomers. One OA friend had returned after dropping out of the
program for many years. One of the newcomers was a man. Men are scarce
in OA in my area. We talked about his program questions after the
meeting, and I gave him my e-mail address. We have exchanged a few messages
It's amazing how HP works in my life. Here I was thinking, "What can I
out of just one more meeting?" What I got was fellowship, encouragement
and the opportunity to work with a male newcomer. It shows me again that
if I am willing to reach out to others, my Higher Power has wonderful
things waiting for me. Thanks, HP!
Reprinted from Lifeline, August 2001, Volume 29, No. 8 (K.G., Goshen,