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Trust Fund

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Before OA, my life was a constant struggle. It was me against the world, and I couldn’t lower my defenses, or I’d be eaten alive. It was very stressful and tiring.

Lack of trust was one of my biggest problems. I grew up in a family in which anything you said could be used against you. I craved trust and intimacy, but had no blueprint of how they worked. So my attitude was black and white on the subject: I abandoned myself completely to relationships with friends or boyfriends, then shut the door on them as soon as I felt they had disappointed or betrayed me. Without realizing it, I was lonely. Still, I smiled too much, laughed too loud, and worked hard to maintain the illusion that I had lots of friends.

The same was true for my physical state. You couldn’t see my disease, but it was eating me up inside and damaging my digestive system. I ran my life like a dictator, but when it came to food, I was failing completely.

In the midst of my pride, I got just desperate enough to try OA. I kept coming back every week because I had nowhere else to go, yet I shared that I hated needing to be here. I’m so glad my HP kept guiding me patiently despite my resistance. The miracle started to happen as soon as I worked the Steps with a sponsor. I have no idea how it worked, but it did. The good thing is, today, I don’t need to understand.

Funnily enough, I was still surprised when I couldn’t trust my sponsor, or other members, or even my HP right away. But how could I? I needed to learn, practice, and be patient. Today, it’s fine if I need time and proof. It’s a relationship like any, and it needs time to grow. Every time I turn something over to my HP, she works miracles.

In one year of program with seven blessed months of abstinence, I’ve learned I don’t know what I need, but today it’s okay. I don’t need to know—my HP does. I just have to ask a question, pray for open-mindedness to receive and accept an answer, and ask for courage to act accordingly.

Today I have friends I trust, whom I call several times a week. I’ve stopped asking one person to be everything for me. My friends and I share deep and honest connections, doubts, fears, hopes, and laughter, and that’s a lot. My stomach doesn’t hurt anymore, and that’s a miracle. Sometimes, I think that recovery is a lot of work and I’d better quit. But I never do! Deep down I don’t want to. I’ve experienced something I never knew existed until coming into program serenity. I’ll do anything it takes to keep that serenity and my precious abstinence, even on lazy days. Thank you, my HP; thank you, OA; and thank you, life!

—Alice, Paris, France

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