Easing the Burden
I am a 26-year-old compulsive overeater and have been in OA for one year. This program has changed my life. I am not the same person I was before entering OA. I have discovered new and loving parts of myself I never knew were there before. I have found my Higher Power. He loves and accepts me; he is everything I want him to be without anyone else’s ideas mixed in. I found him through working the Steps with a sponsor, and I found a sponsor by returning to meetings. It all started with my first meeting.
I never had real friends before OA. I did not know I was likeable and did not like myself. When doing my Fourth Step, I looked into the eyes of my loving sponsor and saw she still loved me. I was shocked. All the program work seemed worthwhile. I did not care why or how the Steps worked; I just knew they did. I drove home that day feeling closer to my creator. I could look in the mirror without disgust. Now, after working and reworking the rest of the Steps, I see love in the mirror. I see my Higher Power in my own eyes. He lives within me, which means my greatest fear—being alone—will never happen.
I am free to live in today, to enjoy this minute. I no longer bow down to fear, people pleasing, resentment, hatred, anger, guilt, shame and all the other negative emotions. All I have to do is call his name. He is my loving mother and the father I never had. He is there for me all the time, as long as I am willing to say one simple phrase: “May your will, not mine, be done.”
So the other day when I left an OA meeting disillusioned because a newcomer had said, “What are you doing here? You’re skinny; you don’t look like you belong here,” I knew I did belong. I am bulimic. Although years of compulsively overeating did not show up as extra weight, I have lost weight. We all know the terrible burden that comes with being a compulsive overeater. My Higher Power used the OA Fellowship and the Twelve Steps to remove that burden. Now I am committed to helping anyone find what my Higher Power has so freely given me. Thank you, OA, for your gift of love and acceptance.
— Reprinted from Lifeline magazine