FOUNDER'S CORNER ~ MEDITATIONS ~
There are many good things that make
those of us in this community proud. We
have so many wonderful resources here
that it's hard to come up with just one.
But certainly at the top of the list would
be the "Recovery Meditations ~ One Day
at a Time" project.
These little gems were born out of
necessity when we were having a
problem finding meditations to use at our
meetings and on our loops, and ran into
copyright problems. Blessed with an
abundance of members who love to write
about their program and do it well, we set
out to bring this ambitious project to fruition.
Members generously contributed one
meditation after another, we published
each on our website and soon began
to distribute them one day at a time
to our members. From that day until
this, there has not been a day our
members have not had a copy of
that morning's Recovery Meditation
on their desktops.
We're in the process of winding up
the project now with the prayer that the
meditations will find a wider audience
when we put them in book-form. Until
then, we hope you'll read them often
and send them to your friends.
The June Meditations calendar can
be found at:
Love in recovery,
~ SELF-WILL ~
This morning I was writing to a friend and the
following was part of our conversation. I share
it with you because it spoke to me, even as I intended
it to speak to my friend. It reminds me of the old
saw about pointing one finger at someone else and
having three pointed right back at yourself!
The BB says our problem is self-will. To me, it's more
like an alien will that doesn't love me or cherish me,
but which is trying its best to destroy me. The only
way it can do that is if my attention is elsewhere. In
my disease I am a victim and a manipulator and a
controller because all those things take the attention
off what is going on in me, and my "self-will" gets to
have its way.....in my absence. In my recovery I practice
living in awareness.
Am I controlling? What is self-will trying to take over
inside me that I, as a mirror, am trying to control
someone/something else? Am I a victim? Why am I blaming
another person for a temporal slavery, when the real
victimizer is my own schizophrenic self-will that wants
to destroy the part of me that companions with the Highest
Power in the Universe?
The thing about self-will is that HP made us reflect its
lies in our life, and the steps are a mirror held up in
front of us so we can identify those things that threaten
who we really are.
Signing my own wake-up call with love and gratitude,
~ TRG ADM ~ The Administrative Hub ~
From TRG Adminstration
The Recovery Group is always expanding the many tools
available for recovery from compulsive eating. In May,
a Sponsor workshop was begun on the Sponsor-Sponsee-Talk
loop. It is being presented by Shlomo, and the wealth of
Experience, Strength and Hope shared by those who sponsor,
and those who soon plan to sponsor, has been amazing.
The Working the Steps (WTS) study is almost complete for
this session, but another leader will come on board in July.
John has been presenting us with a very thought-provoking
12 step study. Thank you again, John!
This quarter of the OA Newcomer's Orientation will soon come
to an end and another will be starting on July 1. The OA
Newcomers loop is a wonderful place to start your OA journey
and to learn about the many services available here at The
Meetings around the clock -- special focus meetings --
finding sponsors -- getting to know other compulsive eaters
from around the world in our loops -- there is so much here
to choose from. We are all welcome to use for our recovery
what we need and want, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
A Frequently Asked (and Answered) Question (FAQ) from Adm
Q. My whole name shows on my email loop. How can I change it?
In loving service to all,
A. When you are asked to confirm your subsription upon
joining, it says "type your whole name or if you wish to be
anonymous, use 'anonymous'."
You can use your first name and last initial, your first name
and a tilde ~ or a nickname with a last initial.
Here is a method for changing any of your settings.
- Put this address in your browser:
or, e.g. http://lists.therecoverygroup.org/archives/oafriends.html
The FIRST time you click on any of the links on this
page, you'll have to type in your email address and a password.
After that L-soft will "set a cookie" and remember your password,
so you probably won't have to type it in again. But just in case,
write it down in a safe place!
- Then click on Subscriber's Corner, in the upper left.
Click on the link that says:
Change your subscription settings on one or more lists.
- If you belong to multiple loops (lists), you will see a
list of them all. Click on the one for which you want to see
You will see your email address, your name and all of your
email settings. To change your email address or name, just
erase what is written there and type in the corrected text.
Nancy & Dodee, Administrators
The Recovery Group
~ ODAT LOOPS DIVISION ~
The ODAT Group Loops
Compulsive overeaters all have the common focus of
recovering from overeating. But sometimes, it is good
to talk to people who understand special challenges
within the context of 12-step recovery. The ODAT
groups were created for this reason.
We have many different focus groups within the ODAT
division. There are groups which focus on the
members' physical challenges, such as diabetes, pain,
depression, PMS, and disabilities. There are groups
which focus on relationships, such as Divorce, Anger,
Grief, Oanon, Isolation, Homebound, Rainbow to
Abstinence, FFOA (Alanon), Parenting, Pregnancy &
Motherhood, and Relationships. Two groups focus on a
food program. These are HOW and Grey sheet. There
are groups whose members share the same faith; such as
Latter Day Saints, Pagan, Christian and Jewish. There
are groups of the same age, such as Teens and Silver.
Some of our groups focus on those members who are
addicted to other substances; in addition to overeating.
These include Drug Abuse, AA, Spending, and S*xandLove
Two very special groups also exist. These are the
Abstinence group, and the Strong Recovery group. In
the Abstinence group, the members commit to eating
three balanced meals per day, and posting at the end
of each day as to whether they met this committment or
not. The Strong Recovery group is for those who identify
themselves as having a strong recovery program.
If you would like any information about any of our
ODAT groups, please contact the division chairperson
at the address below.
ODAT Division Chairperson
Web page: www.theRecoveryGroup.org/odat/index.html
~ RECOVERY LOOPS DIVISION ~
The Recovery Loops Division is made up of TRG's
Twelve-step general sharing support groups. Our common
mission is to provide a safe and supportive space for
anyone who wants to recover from the disease of
compulsive eating to share their experience, strength,
and hope with others. In addition, some of these loops
also have a special focus. The loops that make up this
Division are: Anorexia and Bulimia, The Big Book, 200
Plus, Journey to Recovery, Meditations, OA Friends, OA
Newcomers, OA Recovery, Relapse, Sponsor-Sponsee-Talk,
Working the Steps ("WTS"), and WTS Weekly.
After a very lengthy silence, the Sponsor-Sponsee-Talk
loop has been quite active thanks to a sponsor
workshop that was conducted by Shlomo. This was
something that had been asked for by several members
and finally came into being in May. Hopefully, the
activity started by this workshop will continue on,
since sponsorship is such an important part of any
recovery program. The Sponsor-Sponsee-Talk loop is in
need of coordinators or coordinators-in-training, so
please contact me if you might be interested in
serving in this capacity.
Several of the Recovery Group Loops are in need of a
second coordinator or coordinator-in-training to help
balance the workload. I know that giving service by
being a coordinator of a loop has added a lot to my
own recovery, and hope that you will consider this
opportunity to give service. If you are interested in
becoming a coordinator or coordinator-in-training for
one of the Recovery Group Loops, please contact me at
firstname.lastname@example.org. If you aren't interested in a
coordinator service position but would consider
sending welcome and/or farewell letters or posting
daily topics, please contact me as well.
The Recovery Group Loops Division
More details about these support groups can be found at:
~ TRG PROGRAMS & SPECIAL SERVICES DIVISION ~
We've had lots of action in our division over the past
month. Carolyn and Lisa, the new co-coordinators
of our ODAT Meditations Project along with Mari have been
putting together many new months of meditations and have
almost completed the project.
Shlomo has just finished a successful Sponsor training
workshop which was held in the Sponsor-Sponsee Talk group.
He will continue to be busy with the new Sponsor Loop program,
contacting each loop, asking for members who are willing
to sponsor other members of the loop in order to provide
an up-to-date list of available sponsors in the various TRG
loops. Shlomo's project works independently of our regular
TRG Sponsor Program run by Cate and Patt.
Along with coordinating Telephone Angels, Marilyn has been
getting settled as coordinator of the TRG Topics Team, and
is preparing to send the team out on the "adopt-a-loop"
component of the program. She's also busy hunting new
recruits for our Telephone Angels program.
Penny has been training hard with me this month at the
Serendipity office and is doing a fine job helping the
newsletter activities running in a timely fashion and
meeting the needs of our readers. Marty is always marvelous
at helping me proof as well as getting the newsletter
webified. Of course, we can't forget our various writers -
with a special nod to the the Executive Committee members,
along with Myrlene, Marilyn and the TRG Topics Team who
regularly supply us with articles.
We're always looking for anyone willing to offer
service. I'm currently looking for someone to help
coordinate the 12-Step Anniversary Program and we're
always on the hunt for those willing to sponsor. If
are you interested in giving service in these areas
- or are interested in ANY of our programs and services,
please contact me at:
Love in Recovery,
TRG Programs And Services Division Chair
The Recovery Group
~ TRG SPONSOR PROGRAM ~
It's a privilege to sponsor someone. And it's one
of the ways we stay in recovery.
IF I AM WILLING TO BE A SPONSOR, HERE ARE SOME THINGS
THAT I MUST BE WILLING TO DO:
A sponsor can help us live a happier, healthier life
by guiding us through the 12 Steps to overcome the barriers
of our denial. A sponsor can help us take responsibility
for ourselves by helping us develop our spiritual growth.
- Be willing to be honest with myself.
- Be in a 12-Step support group.
- Be working the 12 Steps to the best of my ability.
- Be willing to be available when someone needs help
or needs to talk.
- Be willing to honor another person's trust and anonymity.
- Realize I am not seeking to be a parent or other authority
figure who can tell anyone how to live their life.
- Realize that I am not perfect, neither do I have all the
- Realize that I am not there to give advice, only my
experience,strength and hope.
The Trg Sponsor Program is here to help provide our members
with an online sponsor if needed.
We encourage our members to share their recovery with others
by signing up to be a sponsor at the "sponsorsadm" address,
TRG Sponsor Coordinators
Patt and Cate
TRG Sponsor Coordinators
~ THE RECOVERY TELEPHONE ANGELS ~
(\0/) (\0/) (\0/)
/ \ / \ / \
For those of us in the northern hemisphere, summer is on
For many of us compulsive overeaters, summers may have
come and gone while we battled with our recovery. We may
have given up fun activities out of fear, false pride, or
shame. When we did have fun, we may have found that our
recovery slipped, and old habits quickly took over again.
Please, do not let this be another summer of discontent.
Recovery Telephone Angels are members of TRG who are here
to help you. They listen, they inspire, they share their
wealth of ESH. They can help take the insanity's edge off
Whether you are battling anorexia, or need to lose 100+
lbs., there is a Recovery Telephone Angel who can connect
with you and relate to you on a personal level.
Our Recovery Angels are available by Telephone or Email....
located from New York to California...as well as Canada,
the UK, Denmark, and Israel.
Recovery Telephone Angels are reaching out to you in
friendship. So, why not reach out, make a new friend,
and get the season off to a great start?
As a member of a loop, you will automatically receive
a copy of our Recovery Telephone Angel Directory. If
you have questions, comments, or need a new copy of the
Directory, just write to us at the address, below.
(Please be sure to include the name of the loop that you
belong to, as this service is for members of TRG only!)
Love in recovery,
Coordinator, Telephone Angels Directory
The Recovery Telephone Angels Program
~ NEWCOMER'S CORNER ~
Newcomers meetings are Monday and Tuesday, 8PM EST and Thursday 10PM EST
I would like to do something a little different this month.
Normally, I use the column as a means of introducing someone
who is new to TRG. This month, I would like to share the story
of someone who has reached their goal. I think that newcomers,
as well as oldtimers, will feel inspired... as this goes to
the heart of what this program is all about.
"I DID IT!!!"
Congratulations, Deborah! Thank you so much for sharing your
story, and ESH with us.
Hi Fellow Loopies!
I just wanted to share with all of you that today was
my monthly weigh-in and measurement day and I FINALLY
reached my goal of losing 55 pounds - hurray!!!!!!!!!!
In addition, I've lost lots of inches in several different
places along the way.
This September will be my two-year anniversary in OA. I started
working the steps with a Step Sponsor when I first came into
OA and am just now finishing Step 12. I know that's probably
A LOT longer than it takes most people to work through their 12
steps, but I really wanted to work them slowly and take my time
on them and concentrate on them and it takes what it takes,
I was not abstinent right away, though. It took me six months
after coming into OA to get abstinent, obtain a Food Sponsor,
find a food plan that would work for me, and start exercising.
So, it's been 14 months since I became abstinent, have been
working with a Food Sponsor, lost weight and inches, and now
exercise on a regular basis.
Suggest the following, instead of that last sentence: So, it's
been 14 months, and I am now abstinent, work with a Food Sponsor,
have lost weight and inches, and exercise on a regular basis.
I don't feel that I work the program in the traditional way
that most people tend to work it, but the thing that I love
and value about this program the most is that there is no
specific way that everyone has to work it. I learned in this
program what every COE needs to learn regardless of what
anybody else is doing, and with the help of my sponsors and
other open-minded fellow OAers, I was able to discover that
My life is totally different now since discovering OA. Some of
the changes that have occurred along the way that were not
physical have been:
I'd also like to share that without discovering this OA program,
my wonderful step and food sponsors, and all of the unique people
that I've met in both the on-line and F2F fellowship, NONE of the
above would have EVER been possible to attain in my life and for that
I'm incredibly thankful and blessed.
- I realize now that I don't always have to be right;
- I try very hard not to gossip about anyone anymore;
- I have learned that I can say that I need to think about
something, instead of so quickly and harshly stating,"NO;"
- I try to apologize as soon after I've done something that
I think I've been wrong about something that has hurt someone;
- I don't feel inadequate or like a failure for having
apologized and admitted that I was wrong about something
- I've learned that it's okay to make mistakes and that
I'm not perfect and do not have to be perfect;
- I like myself now and actually have self esteem;
- I no longer take anti-depressant medication and haven't
done so in over a year and feel perfectly fine without it;
- I know now that life is good and worth living and that
I can be happy and enjoy life;
- I have learned that there is a way to cope with fears and
that it's more important to have faith than to fear, and
to face your fears and go through them instead of avoiding
- I have stopped finding fault in other people and instead try
to look at myself and what I need to work on with myself;
- I don't isolate as much anymore. I actually enjoy people
and places now;
- I have found hope;
- I discovered the art of meditation and how meaningful it
can be between God and me;
- I don't always look at things negatively anymore;
- I try to examine my anger over people, situations and
things and very often realize that I'm the one who has
- I realize now that God has put certain people and
situations in my life as a learning experience and that
some things are just meant to be;
- I know now that I have NO control over things and that
I shouldn't try to control people, situations and things
and not having control doesn't make me fearful anymore
because I only thought that I had control but never
really did to begin with;
- I know that I can trust God to take care of me and provide
me with everything that I need even though it's not what
I think I may want or need;
- I go to bed at night now feeling fulfilled and content
knowing that I remained abstinent and took care of my
- I wake up every morning in thankfulness for a fresh start
- I'm happy to have a structured and disciplined plan of
eating every day so that I can stay within my boundaries
of healthy eating and instead of rebelling against it,
have come to realize and accept that it's worth having to
weigh and measure all my foods;
- I look forward to attending meetings because I've come
to realize that they are my "fix" for staying clean
within the program;
- I now know that I have this program, friends that I've
made in this program that care and will probably always
be there for me, and a way of dealing with whatever life
brings me. I feel confident that I will get through
things without having to stuff my face over them which
will only makes things worse anyway;
- Most importantly, I no longer: hate myself, sit around my
house depressed and feeling sorry for myself, hate other
people because of it, avoid doing certain things because
of fear, or overeat to avoid feeling things or dealing with
certain people or situations. I have now learned how
to use the OA tools and 12 steps to deal with life on
life's terms instead of trying to avoid or change things.
I truly believe that this program really does work if you are
willing to work at it and that it can work for anyone!
Luv in Recovery,
Joy and Peace,
Newcomer's Meeting Leader
~ IMAGES OF HP ~
I'll never forget what a sponsor asked me a few years
back, after I had spent a good half hour telling her
how awful my life was. She asked me, "Where is God in
all of this?" And I quickly responded, "Well, I have
pretty much been ignoring God, and I am pretty sure He
feels the same way." This response came from me, a
very faith-filled person on a good day. What was
wrong with me?
Well that is a long story, but I would like to point
out that my image of my Higher Power tends to default
to the image I have of my father who was fairly
absent, fused perhaps with my mother who seemed absent
in her own way. No resentment necessary to have a
problem here; I just tend to view my Higher Power the
same way I viewed my parents when I was a child.
What amazes me is how tenacious this image is. I can
read so many books on differing images of HP, go to
differing faith communities, see a variety of shows,
hear a variety of audio books on the subject; I can
have what seems like great breakthroughs. And then,
if I am slack in my daily program, I default back to
"God is ignoring me."
Thank God I do have a program that helps me reprogram
my thinking about God. I wake up every morning and
follow a set routine for declaring to myself and to
the universe what I believe about God and my
relationship to Him. Sometimes it feels like I am
faking it until I make it, and sometimes I truly feel
what I am saying. But no matter what, I keep saying
what I believe. And one day at a time, I can walk out
what I believe, more or less!!!
May your HP be present to you today!
~ MY FIRST OA RETREAT ~
Funny, how it took me so long to attend an OA retreat. My
return to OA, after an absence of twenty years, came in
January of 2002. Right away, I knew this time was different.
This time, I had willingness to work the program the way the
program was meant to be worked. I received my miracle of
abstinence and good recovery on June 1st, 2004. It took me a
while to receive that miracle but I am so grateful that I did.
Four and a half years after I returned to OA, I decided to
attend a local OA retreat in Columbus OH. There were six of
us locally who were attending, three of those six were my
sponsees. The retreat was being held at St. Therese, a
former monastery. I envisioned quiet solitude, beautiful
grounds and lots of spirituality. My vision was correct.
From the moment I turned into the driveway, I knew I had
found exactly what I was looking for in a retreat. The
monastery was made of stone and looked like a small castle.
The grounds were green and sprinkled with statues and a
grotto and stations of the cross along with a small pond
and ducks and geese. I loved it!
I checked in and found my room which was also as I envisioned:
a small cubicle with a narrow bed and a small sink. Was I in
the middle of the "Nun's Story?" Registration began and I
helped out with the greetings. We had our first lead who was
a young woman speaking on Steps One, Two and Three. She was
very enthusiastic and I enjoyed her immensely. Her lead was
followed by each of us sharing and a lot of interaction. Just
what I wanted!
Then we were shown to the chapel which was absolutely
breathtaking. Hand-painted, quiet, and only partially lit.
I knew where I would be spending a lot of time. We had service
first thing in the A.M. and last thing at night. I could feel
my spiritual connection with my Higher Power all ready
strengthening. This was the main reason for my coming to
the retreat; I wanted my spirituality strengthened!
I couldn't believe the night was over and it was 5:30 A.M. the
next day. Me, who can never get out of bed in the A.M. was up
and ready to go at 5:30. Wow, I loved this! Quick shower, got
dressed and out the door, I knew that I wanted a tour of the
grounds in the early morning dawn - I found the grotto, lit a
candle and said a prayer. On my way back a sponsee came out
and said she had prayers for the stations of the cross. I
asked to join her and she said, "Yes." So we went from station
to station, both saying the prayers and continuing on. I so
very much loved it all. I am not a religious woman, yet that
spiritual connection kept me praying. It didn't matter that
I was not Catholic, only that I was praying to a power greater
than myself. We finished just in time for the early morning
service in chapel. Just to sit in that chapel, to hear the
lovely music, to see the beauty of the painted murals and to
listen to the step prayers being said one at a time every
five minutes gave me so much spiritual inspiration.
The rest of the day was spent with meals, speakers, meetings,
workshops and lots of interaction; so much recovery! I loved
hearing all the different stories yet all with the same theme;
compulsive overeating. I was on the panel of the "Ask it basket"
and enjoyed that very much. I took walks with each of my sponsees
around the grounds as well as did some step work of my own and
helped a sponsee take Step Seven. The evening ended with a
"tasai service." This is a service lead by the other retreat
also attending St. Therese that weekend; a religious
organization that was kind enough to invite us OA members to
their service. It consisted of extremely short hymns of only
four or five stanzas repeated five or six times. They would
start out softly then grow louder then back to soft at the
end of each hymn. There must have been at least eight songs
sung within a thirty minute period of time. It was extremely
beautiful singing and tears came to my eyes. At the end of
the service, candles were lit by individuals one at a time;
very beautiful. I went to bed with such peace in my soul.
Up early the final day at 5:30 A.M. again! I think I could
get used to doing my mornings this way. If only I could
figure out how to pack the chapel and grounds into my
suitcase and take it home with me! A local OA member led
us in a Hare Krishna reading at chapel that A.M. Then
breakfast and the final speaker as well as good-byes. Our
final good bye was a beautiful song sung by all members in
a circle outside on the grounds. There were twenty of us and
we sang the song to one individual at a time. Here is how the
Cindi, you are beautiful.
If you can imagine, each of us an addict with such low self
esteem, being told by nineteen other members that we were
beautiful, we were strong and wonderful and hear us loving
you. We cried. We sobbed. We hugged, and we said good-bye.
Cindi, you are strong.
Wonderful to be with
You carry us along,
Cindi, hear our loving song.
~ FROM THE TWELVE-STEP LITERATURE ~
~~ AN AA BIG BOOK READING~~
"We turned back to the list, for it held the key to
the future. We were prepared to look at it from an entirely
different angle. We began to see that the world and its people
really dominated us. In that state, the wrong-doing of others,
fancied or real, had power to actually kill. How could we
escape? We saw that these resentments must be mastered, but
how? We could not wish them away any more than compulsive
overeating." (AABB, page 66)
With permission, Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.
I was both excited and scared as I prepared my list
and resentments. I could soon see that I had let my world
have the power to make many drastic changes in my life. As I
could not go along with or reconcile myself with the God of my
childhood, I was always at odds with some person, place or thing
where I lived. It took me many years to try and shake the
ingrained teachings, but when I found the AABB and started
studying the 12 Steps, I was so grateful because I was free at
I learned that most of the resentments I had were
because of "fear". Fear of being struck down by my punitive
and punishing God. But now I have learned that my God is
loving and kind and accepts me! I forgave the ones whom I had
resentment for, because I learned that I'd been feeding myself
the poison for years. I could now see that it was "they" who
were spiritually sick. At last I can truthfully say that I am
a much happier and serene person and I owe it to the Big Book
and its wonderful teachings!!
Thanks for letting me share!!
Myrlene (Big Book and Recovery Group Coordinator)