I spent 19 1/2 years of my life actively participating in my disease. Bingeing, purging, starving, over exercising, pills, laxatives, powders, eating only one food, and so many other compulsive behaviors were all part of the insanity of my disease--a disease which had me convinced that the ONLY way to keep the demons away and stay in control was to listen to it. There was no room for anything else or anyone else.
When I first attended meetings regularly, I was desperate to stop. And on the days I attended a meeting I did stop. The hope and welcome I felt in the rooms kept me going for 24 hours. On the days I missed a meeting, the bulimia was back with a vengeance. Where had been my resolve? I worked up to six meetings a week. And still--no meeting, no lasting abstinence. I was not free.
Then I finally hit the bottom I needed to work the Steps. After TWO years of attending meetings and white-knuckling it from one meeting to the next, I got a sponsor and started working the program, the 12 Steps. I wanted what she had and was willing to go to any lengths to recover. I followed directions and did the work. Some of it was heartbreaking, some of it was eye-opening, and some of it was pure joy. Most of all, it was life saving, life affirming and a reason to rejoice, for I had truly found a new way of living and a life I had never dared to imagine for myself. A life free from the grips of a disease that continues to try to regain control and one that I have no doubt will destroy me if I do not work my program on a daily basis.
Program has taught me that I am not cured. What I have is a daily reprieve based on my spiritual condition. This spiritually fit condition did not come easily to me. I struggled with putting trust in my Higher Power. The six months prior to finding lasting abstinence were in program while I was working the steps. As I worked through them the first time and continued steps 1-3 and 10-12 on a daily basis, my trust in HP grew until I was finally able to turn to HP instead of the bulimia for direction in every single aspect of my life. I didn't force it or make a vow. I took the next inspired action, turned to HP in moments of panic or indecision, one day at a time. Truthfully, at times it was one moment at a time.
Life has not been all sunshine and roses. And that is okay because the worst day in recovery is glorious compared to my best day when my disease ruled my life.
Now, almost thirty years later, I put one foot in front of the other, trusting God, cleaning house, and serving others. And I find myself truly free.