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Richer, Saner, and New

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I just finished my first year in OA, and it has been amazing. I am convinced it was GOD, the Gift of Desperation, that got me to my first meeting. I accepted Step One then, and I honestly faced the truth about my disease.

I had used bad eating habits to cover up feelings, comfort myself in times of stress, and sedate myself with food. I was constantly grazing. I was desperate to find a better way. When I realized my eating was irrational and I needed to find resources to help me, I took the Second Step and started to hope.

The Third Step was the Step of faith. I tried to develop a clear understanding of my Higher Power. I came to believe my HP connects with me through my instincts and intuition. I visualize this as being like a smartphone: I don’t really understand how it works, but it can do amazing things, and I can take it anywhere. As long as I keep it charged, I can ask for help and directions. I charge it by working the Twelve Steps and using the nine Tools of the OA program. My connection is stronger when I align my will with HP’s. Things are better when I surrender my need for control and am willing to let go and trust.

I was lucky to connect with a wonderful sponsor right from the start. We are kindred spirits, and I have shared with her things I have never shared with another soul. We took months to work Step Four together. Now, we’re working Step Eight.

My action plan includes daily prayer, meditation, and literature readings. At first, meditation was mysterious to me, but now I know that all I need to do is be in a quiet and peaceful place, breathe deeply, start with a prayer, and let God in—like having a visit with a very dear, close friend. Being present gives me the peace and serenity I have really needed.

My food plan continues to evolve. I spent several months working with a nutritionist and that has helped a lot. I can only do my best one day at a time and commit myself each day to this program. Some days are better than others, but I have managed to release more than 30 pounds (14 kg) in this first year. I am in no hurry.

I wish I had found OA sooner and saved myself a lot of pain and frustration. I still have more to learn, but my life is so much richer and saner because of Overeaters Anonymous. I am thankful this Fellowship is here for everyone and thankful to know it is never too late to start.

— Linda P., Portland, Maine USA

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