~ Dreams ~

Dear Friends on our Journey ~ ~ ~

My name is Mari. I am a compulsive overeater, an addict, a member of Overeater's Anonymous, a mother, a wife ...... and a dreamer. There was a time I wasn't. And this Journey to Recovery is about that time.

"If you have built castles in the air,
your work need not be lost;
that is where they should be.
Now put the foundations under them.

Henry David Thoreau

I could not survive without dreams. Even in the best of worlds and in the best of times ..... with the disease of compulsive overeating ... with the disease of compulsive ANYTHING .... there are times all that is left is our dream.

Before I found hope, I had given up dreaming. Before the disease grabbed me really bad, there was always hope that things would get better. But the more firmly this disease became entrenched in me, the closer I got to my bottom, the months and years I was deep in the disease ....... I did not dream. Loss of hope made me quit dreaming.

Gone were those thoughts of when I could walk down the street and look like a normal person. No longer could I go into a "regular" store and buy "regular" clothes. If I went to a restaurant, the first thing I did was look around and try to find a table instead of a booth ... because it would embarrass me to try to fit into a booth.

I quit taking airplane trips simply because i was too embarrassed to spill over into someone else's seat. Dreams of appearing publicly in the profession I had spent a lifetime in ... began fading. Simple dreams like lying out on a beach that I love? Totally gone .... because I would not be seen in a bathing suit. I dreamed about once more taking my four children swimming and frolicking around in the water with them.

I dreamed I was beautiful and simply by making up and going to my hair dressers I would become more beautiful. Now, a new hairdo, careful makeup and new clothes made no difference. I dreamed of parties ... going to them and giving them. I dreamed of sex with my husband and the freedom of participating in that once again without having to turn off the light.

I dreamed of wallking into a grocery store and not having the lady in the cart next to mine look at what I bought and shake her head. I dreamed of going to visit my mother and not hearing her say "Still having weight problems, I see." I dreamed of going to the mall with my teen-agers .... and they not walking six feet behiind me.

I dreamed to be whistled at again. And to be treated with respect by the store clerk who always seemed to wait on those more slender than I first. I dreamed of receiving a gift of beautiful clothes for my Christmas and my birthday instead of pots, pans and candy.

And little by little .... I dreamed less and less. Because I began to see that these dreams would never come true.

And finally ..... I stopped dreaming. This is absolutely true. I found myself so deep in my disease that there were no more dreams. I quit dreaming. I even quit day dreaming.

And I began to live in this disease.

Without dreams.

Dear God,
Life without dreams,
Is not worth living.
If there are no dreams,
There is no purpose.
And, if there is no purpose,
What else is there left?

The Recovery Group

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