A Story of Recovery:

In One Fell Swoop


I was unemployed and without an apartment or friends, spending my days binge-eating, drinking, and taking drugs. I spent all day and night in my pajamas, lounging in my childhood bedroom, and was suicidally depressed for weeks. I saw the despair in my parents’ eyes as they came in every so often to check that I was still breathing.

I didn’t know what to do; I was hopeless. Of all the things I turned to for a solution, food was my number one addiction of choice. I binge-ate because it made me numb and made me feel the kind of comfort that I trusted. I couldn’t go one day without hiding in a room and eating massive amounts of my favorite flour and sugar items.

I had never heard the term” food addiction” growing up, but I knew there was something wrong with me. I was told frequently that I needed to learn self-control and to stop being so negative. However, I had tried every route possible without finding a solution. One night, as I lay in bed in my three-day-old pajamas, I did some research and fell upon www.foodaddicts.org. By “fell upon,” I mean my Higher Power saved me.

I also had never heard of, or wanted to be involved in, Twelve-Step programs, but I willingly connected with a member from Food Addicts in Recovery Anonymous (FA). I attended the next weekly meeting in Chicago and had a sponsor the next day. I knew the minute I walked into that meeting room that I was home; it was truly instantaneous. The stories I heard finally matched my own. I finally had the answers I needed.

My first ninety days were the hardest days of my life, and I can still say a few months later, I am not out of the woods. I had a few easier days, which I consider a gift from God, but many of those first days were filled with challenges. I remember my sponsor encouraging me to just not eat for that day. We would count the hours left in the day and she would say to just make it through the next 12 hours without eating. If it weren’t for her, I wouldn’t be writing this story today, abstinently.

Without a shadow of a doubt, I can say that my abstinence is a miracle. As a 25-year-old young woman who struggled with many addictions and was a daily binger, God gave me the strength to give it all up in one fell swoop. God kept me abstinent from flour, sugar, and quantities and kept me away from my other addictions of alcohol, drugs, and prescription medications. I was even able to stay away from caffeine and dating, so I could focus solely on my recovery.

When asked what carried me through, I go right to God. I didn’t have a strong relationship with my Higher Power, or really any relationship with my Higher Power before I came into this program. Now, without a shadow of a doubt, I know He exists and has truly saved my life. We have to choose between the life we want for our future and the life we left behind and, just for today, I choose the hope I have for my future.

 

This story was originally published in the connection Magazine. Subscribe to the connection Magazine for more stories of recovery. Or submit your own story of recovery.