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A Life Transformed

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Last year I was 14 and a half stone (92 kg; 203 lbs) and ate incessantly when I wasn’t at work. I ate anything in sight. My knees complained as I struggled up the stairs at the end of my shifts. My heart was unhappy about coping with my extra weight. Despite knowing what I should do and promising every morning to make a fresh start, I could not.

I had been meditating for more than twelve years and waiting with diminishing hope that the promised self-control would kick in. It never did. It definitely helped lift my depression, which I experienced over the failure of my eighteen year marriage, but it did not have an impact on my eating.

Eventually I arrived at OA and was met by a beautiful and warm young woman who is now my sponsor.

Some people take to the program right away, but I was a slow learner and tried easier, softer ways at first. I started with three binges a day and put on 7 pounds (3 kg) in that first month. But by the grace of my Higher Power, I made a start, and the weight gain, while not welcome, encouraged me to change my plan, which became three meals a day and a treat after lunch and tea.

After about three weeks of this, I had a binge and decided I needed a permanent sponsor. I picked up the courage to ask this lovely woman to help me. She agreed and has been invaluable for my recovery.

I work the program imperfectly but am learning to take each day as it comes. Meditation helps, especially when struggling with Step Four and Step Eight.

My life is transformed: I have lost 47 pounds (21 kg). I can look at myself in the mirror and not be appalled. I am going to social events and have a lot of new friends in OA.

A new church is nurturing me, and I am privileged to do service. It has been an inspiring, delightful, and sometimes painful journey, but knowing that I am not alone is comforting beyond belief. Thank you for bringing others’ stories to our attention. They really help.

— Philomena M., Northern Ireland

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