“God, I offer myself to Thee
to build with me and to do with me
as Thou wilt. Relieve me of the bondage
of self, that I may better do Thy will. Take away
my difficulties, that victory over them may bear
witness to those I would help of Thy Power, Thy Love,
and Thy Way of life.
I feel gross. I feel fat. I feel out of control. I feel lost. I am scared. I feel nervous, I am anxious.
Step three is about giving up control, completely and giving your recovery to your higher power. I gave up control, of everything. Have you watched that OCD show on VH1 I think where the people have to break their rituals, whatever they may be, and defeat them everywhere in their lives. They go nuts. And this is after treatment. I feel very much the same way. Me changing ONE, just ONE routine or ritual or behavior or ED thought a day is hard as hell. And once I change, I don’t go back. Recovery is not a merry-go-round I wanna stay on for life. I know it is also not always a straight path, but I am so fucking sick of feeling fat all the time I scream, I cry, and I get absolutely downright furious. I cannot control my anger and hate. I feel bad but if I need to experience feelings, then it is pent up hate and frustration. NOTHING seems to be okay when I am on board with recovery. Is this a good sign? I hope so. I even gave up the scale because I am so damned scared to get on it because I am convinced that I will never stop gaining weight and I am destine to be some fat chick who has no will power or self control. Ahhhh, breathe….
Back to step three, giving up myself to God. I was confused at first with this. I think I may have been expecting me ‘giving up’ the fight against anorexia would entail some spiritual awakening, seeing the light if you will. So I waited for this to happen…and it didn’t. Don’t worry I didn’t lose faith in God, but at church on Wednesday my priest, who I adore, told this story about a man on a boat. He lost his boat and had to spend time with the help of his son building 3 new boats. They set sail, hit a storm and the guy died. At heavens gate he was furious with God and demanded to know WHY he had died and why God ‘let him die’ on his boat. God stepped back, looked at the man and said “I sent you three boats!” so when I personally reflect on that, there obviously is not going to be some wow recovery is now easy spiritual awakening like I was expecting. I think I need to read the signs I get in life, and run with them. Life offers me choices. Life offers you choices. Your only choice will never be your eating disorder and choosing life, and trusting that life will guide you in the right direction is hard. It is all unknown. This is hard for me. When I am ‘in my disease,’ being thin gives me control and eating how I think I should gives me control. I feel like my whole anorexia ‘career’ I was waiting to get thin enough because then like magic my shitty life that is and was going no where with no direction would magically be replaced with pink elephants swimming in kool-aid. Yes, I really thought and still somewhat believe that when I am in full control of my food, my life will magically work out for me, the road will be laid and I will be successful. That is so sick. It is this mentality that gets me caught up in anorexia. Its all a way of coping, for me to get out of my life and not deal with it and face it. And it’s not like I have some horrid life or something. I have a good income, I make all my bills on time, I have cute clothes even though none of them fit anymore. I have money to go buy a new outfit or two so I am not sitting all day at my desk in pants tight around my belly hoping they will magically fit next time I put them on. When I realize I no longer want anorexia, it is totally taking away my coping strategy but I am not sure besides being unsure about life in general what I am coping about or trying to get away from. Giving up my eating disorder and laying it in the hands of God is my way of dealing with life and hopefully bringing happiness to myself. So it is not just giving up being thin, it is so much more. It is losing my entire life and at the moment it feels like giving up hope. If I just eat and forget about weight I lose all control so I am not there yet. But I have been taking advantage of recovery when I can. If new food is available, I eat. I laid out my recovery for ME and how I would like it to work. Setting boundaries is very important. At first I was trying to recover according to other peoples desires and wishes. Therefore, I was just as stuck in my disease as I was before. What I realized, with the help of my EDA meetings, was that recovery is MY THING, no one can choose it for me, no one can make it for me. The decision is and always will be mine. I pretty much have to say fuck you to other people’s expectations because deep down, I know what feeling good is, I know what recovery is. I know what holds me back and what I need to deal with. Stop worrying about food, stop worrying about weight, stop trying to control. GIVE IT UP.
As hard as step three is, and as emotional as it is, it is also refreshing. My fight is not over but the storm has subsided. I do not have to deal with it anymore. I gave a big ass FUCK YOU to anorexia and looked for support from God, and those who support my recovery. I am trying to have a novel relationship with food too… I can eat whenever I want. That’s strange. I try but old thoughts creep in and I constantly have to remind myself to give up, let God take control. My personal hold back is me, and only me. Do I have the ability to keep at this? Do I have the confidence in myself? I am so sick of the mind games and battles will I ever stop constant obsessing about how I look (or think I look), starring at my stomach, feeling my clothes, and changing 934865 times what I eat??
Last week I had a HUGE, I mean GINORMOUS urge to get wasted, every. Single. Day. I hated recovery and my fatness. I wanted to be wasted, go to bed and not ‘deal.’ At first this scared me because alcohol has never really been a scape goat for me. I only really drank during my college years and loved it then. I loved dancing, being loud and obnoxious and laughing/crying about everything with my girlfriends. Now, I want to drink, get out of life, and go to bed so I don’t even have to think or deal with food. No, I haven’t drank and I don’t think I am an alcoholic but I think I was looking for a way to again, avoid recovery and dealing with life. Escapist- I am ever trying to find ways to escape reality. Its all so addictive- I am definitely a dopamine addict lol. I wish I could get addicted to recovery but again, what would happen when I am done? I need balance. Giving up leaves me sort of. Um……bored? Lost? Scared? I’m waiting for the ‘here’s your next step in life’ moment but it hasn’t come.
What should I be doing? Where should I be going? I need need need friends down here. But I have none. I have my family who I love dearly but c’mon… to them I am ‘the anorexic’ so one of my boundaries obviously is to keep distance from them, in a healthy way.
Here is the 411 on Step Three from my workbook:
The purpose of the steps is humility. Step 3 can certainly be a very humbling experience.
Admitting that you can’t run your own life is seemingly as low as you can go. As you will discover after working this step, making that admission takes you to the top if you can truly let go and let God. Thy will, not mine be done.
Dependence on a higher power leads to independence of the spirit. It grants you freedom from worry, obsession, guilt and regret. God gave us free will. If we give our will back, that leaves us FREE! Step 3 is to be practiced. The door can be opened with a key. Willingness is the key. We must let God in, and to do that, our EGO (Easing God Out) must be released. You only have to be willing to be willing. Any beginning no matter how small is all it takes. Just by being here, you have made a beginning on step 3, because you are looking for an answer outside of your will. When working step 3, we need to remember to KISS (keep it simple sweetie). Step 3 only requires that we make a decision. It doesn’t require that we actually turn our will and our lives over just yet. Steps 4-9 are the actual turning it over. That takes a lot of pressure off, doesn’t it? Step 3 is about willingness and trust in something outside of ourselves. As we learn how to get out of our Higher Power’s way, our lives will become enriched with a feeling of safety and wellbeing.
We thought we could find an easier, softer way. But we could not. With all the earnestness at our command, we beg of you to be fearless and thorough from the very start. Some of us have tried to hold on to our old ideas and the result was nil until we let go absolutely. When we look back, we realize that the things which came to us when we put ourselves in God’s hands were better than anything we could have planned.
So you see, initially it is like giving you the free card in monopoly to pass by jail. It is saying essentially give up the fight, give up the control, just let life BE. Holy hell, only would something like this be so hard for an eating disordered individual…
ps- still kickin in high gear on the paleo and primal band wagon- i love my meat and veggies. just working to keep my carbs UP and eat the so-so things like dairy cottage cheese, cheese, cream, full fat FAGE oh how i love thee, and a shitload of nuts. This is hard/scary/bloating etc etc… but i am almost at a place where i am ‘healthy’ enough to start lifting weights!!!!!!!!! I cannot wait for this, and dancing.
I made up a dance in my head to the Usher song OMG…haha i wanna do it and see it done SOOO BADLY!!!!!!!!!!!!!! so maybe, just maybe, I, ME, MY personality is coming back, slowly….??