October 9, 2018
It’s hard to walk into these rooms for the first time. We were scared. We don’t know what to expect so it’s important to be nice to newcomers and not to scare them off. We share our experience, strength and hope. We share that we were once in their shoes too. That we have eaten an entire tub of ice cream (or two); that we have eaten spoiled food; that we have hidden food from our family; that we’ve eaten out of the garbage can; we have been the scared newcomer too. So OA family, I challenge you to keep OA strong. Send me your OA newcomer stories. Of course they will be anonymous. We don’t advertise. However, there are many others that do – that promise unsuspecting people to get skinny quick, to lose weight in 10 days. We know what they don’t. That the problem is not the food. The problem is in their heads. We know it is a simple plan. We know that it’s simple but it’s not easy. Contact me or Sandy
As a newcomer in 2002, I said, “…alcoholism is easier; just don’t drink. But OA is harder because I have to eat…”
I stayed a newcomer until I realized that alcoholics CAN drink (water and milk and Kool-Aid). They can’t drink anything with alcohol. Similarly, I have to eat, but what are my alcoholic foods? As an overeater, I can eat lettuce and pears and Gazpacho. But it is up to me to discover what foods are like alcohol for me. After I keep a food and feelings journal, I can find out which foods trigger my cravings and allergies. My newcomer story is one of discovering my alcoholic food list.
So I’m trying to make the blog more like a blog so all the blog posts will be under one heading. If you have anything interesting to post let me know through my email Ladye316@aol.com or through this website.
“The steps in AA are a suggestion. For instance if you were going to jump out of an airplane, it is “suggested that you use a parachute. But you do what you want.”
OA has changed my life. While I don’t have much physical abstinence as far as weight loss, I’m much more aware of when I get into what I call bottom-feeding tendencies – feeling sorry for myself, self-destructive eating or behaviors, isolating. Recently at a meeting the questions was asked Where would you be without OA. I know that I would weigh more, I would have tried more pay and weigh places, and my life would be in a bigger mess than it is. How has OA helped you?
An Action Plan
This is taken from For Today February 23. I use this to make sure I’m doing the right thing with my program.
Do I have a sponsor – one who has what I want?
Do I really listen at meetings and try to contribute?
Am I working the program beyond step 3?
Am I trying to practice the principles of the program at home and at work as well in OA?
Do I have a personal concept of a Higher Power that works for me?
Am I still trying to diet, i.e., manipulate and control my food and my weight?
Do I follow suggestions such as weigh only once a month?
Have I ever called a newcomer or another OA member?
Do I give some form of service?
Do I ever express gratitude for having come this far?
Hunger Games by Rose K.
Why do we play with our food?
Is it Rude or Real?
Just a game or is
OA really beside our names?
Are we awake?
Don’t take that first
Spend time with yourself
No I don’t mean the obvious innuendo. We had some very cold weather this winter. It kept a lot of us in with canceled work and meetings, etc. One of the first days for it to pass, I had a dentist appointment. My dentist’s office is downtown, one of the few things I enjoy about going to the dentist besides his wry sense of humor. While I was down there I decided to park the car and go exploring. I don’t spend a lot of time downtown despite the fact it’s about a mile and half from my house. I saw the construction of the new library and that made me think of its temporary location. I had a former colleague who worked there and hadn’t seen her in a while. The day was warm enough to take the chill off but I still needed a sweater. I enjoyed being outside and enjoyed the sun on my face. I spent a little time in the temporary building of the library then decided to find the grocery story that was also downtown. I remember being downtown in the 80s and it being very quiet. That day there was much traffic and construction with there being a resurgence in businesses in the area; at least during the day. I found the store and walked in to a store that catered to a sophisticated clientele. There was everything to common items to find in a grocery store to a wide variety of wine. I say all this to say, I may have bought a 10 cent book and had my teeth cleaned, but I enjoyed the peace of spending time alone, and exploring downtown. I didn’t eat anything and didn’t think about food except a little in the grocery store. It was peaceful. And I walked about 2 miles that day.
My question to you, dear readers, is how is this related to program?
From Terri B
The question asked at the end of “Spend Time With Yourself” was how is finding peaceful time for oneself related to program. As I have spent the last three years of my life in a loud, chaotic environment, I appreciate peace more than ever. Peace to me is a vital component of self-care and the Big Book demonstrates through stories that self-care is vital for refreshing our vigilance over and over.against this pernicious, unrelenting disease. The Big Book let me know that willpower is useless but being ever on guard against trigger situations is paramount.
For me, quiet to think is important to my program as it keeps my stress and anger levels down. Don’t get too hungry, angry, lonely or tired is a list of conditions that distract from vigilance against this monster disease that seems determined to control my life. I get angry when I am overwhelmed. I get overwhelmed when life is loud and chaotic. Doing what refreshes me is a way to do self-care. The need to refresh myself to stay vigilant is demonstrated by stories in the Big Book.
At the moment, some of my ways to refresh are not available and my need to spend time with myself is hard to get; but awareness of the nature of my disease helps me focus and the rarity of alone time is precious to me. Anne’s shared story shows me that you can spend time with yourself even when surrounded by others. I believe the Big Book could do with an addendum that includes Anne’s tale of her day. Thank you for sharing Anne.