Dear Friends on the Journey ~
My name is Mari and I am a compulsive eater in recovery. It has been almost a year since I have written one of my Journey to Recovery pieces. What is so surprising about this is that it is something I used to do daily. Thank you for allowing me to share my journal with you.
"We here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain ~ that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom ~ and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth."
Abraham Lincoln at Gettysburg
When I woke up on the morning of September 11 last year, I wasn't aware at that point that my life was going to change that day. The change was going to be profound but not external. I would look the same, live in the same house, see the same people, have the same stores to shop in, the same ocean air to breathe ... but deep inside me the safety and security I had always known in my homeland would never be again.
These internal changes put my disease into motion. I found myself seeking the comfort of food and eating without even realizing I was doing so. This impacted me. How could I be so callous as to even think about food when thousands of my fellow Americans were lying under mounds of rock and debris and here I was safe. As I now look back on that day, I can replay every significant event in my life and found that food in some way was part of it all. I believe that was a light bulb moment ... the proof that I reacted irrationally when something happened that stirred my insides ... and that played havoc with my psyche.
How unbelievable that day seems. What must it have been like when those working in the Pentagon emerging from the huge hole and the stench of bodies and smoke looked across the river and saw the Lincoln Memorial gleaming in the afternoon sun? When someone is at war, they go with the expectation of fighting and killing and each day is one of horror ... but to walk in ones office and be sipping a first cup of coffee and suddenly be blown up is something I can't yet even imagine. Husbands on their cell phones saying their good-byes to the wife they left at home knowing they were doomed. People screaming. I'm reminded of the picture some of you may remember of the little pubescent Vietnamese girl without any clothes screaming as she ran away from the bombs in the country she had grown up in. Here were people in the safety of our own country running and screaming not even knowing which direction was a path to safety.
Lincoln's Gettysburg statement is so applicable now. Let not those men, women and children die in vain. There but for the grace of God go we. We have emerged as a nation as I knew we would. I believe we are stronger and I hope kinder to one another. We who have the disease of compulsive eating are fighting our own battles and I hope we can be kinder to one another. I believe the world we live in is no longer safe ... actually it has never really been safe but we have always assumed it to be so. It is okay, however, because we who have come this far in recovery know now that we are not in control and that to exist or coexist depends on our relationship with a greater power than we ... the God of our understanding.
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