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Wholeness and Holiness

I have been a member of OA for twenty-six months and abstinent one day at a time since I walked into the rooms. Under the wings of my HP and OA, I have let go of 70 pounds (32 kg) so far.

In my meditation recently, I remembered a woman who told me that Fridays were special days when she would take her young son to a particular fast-food restaurant and let him order anything he wanted. It was a weekly celebration that she planned into her meager budget.

I remembered smiling on the outside, being polite, and judging on the inside. A litany of chemicals and food additives ran through my mind with the corresponding effects they could have on the body. I thought about the diseases the woman was setting up for herself and her child. I pitied their ignorance but did not feel it was appropriate to diminish the joy and pride I saw in this mom’s eyes.

I then thought about the lengths I go in order to get just the right foods. There are so many keywords I look for and so many questions I ask farmers and grocers. Even then, I would often get home and notice I bought “organic” but not “grass-fed,” or “pasteurized” not “fermented.” It seemed obsessive.

What if there is something I am not seeing about food? What if both of us are wrong? Or what if one of us is right, and it is not me? When I was little, our family used to say a blessing before meals. We still do it before a holiday meal and at my church, but usually I just launch into my food without a thought. Maybe this is the missing link in my disease. I have taken the wholeness – the holiness – out of eating.

My HP teaches and blesses me every day through people, events, nature, and even the air I breathe. Why do I cut off from my HP when I prepare and eat my food? Food is like everything else in the physical world. It is made of molecules, which are made of atoms, which are made of protons, neutrons, and electrons that orbit each other with energetic space between them. Everything is made more of energy than matter. I bet that the mother and son who sit together on Friday evenings, eating fast food with joy and gratitude, imbue their weekly meal with more nourishment than I get from all the “proper” meals I shove down.

In OA I work to grow into right relationship with my HP, my fellows, and myself. I also need to grow into right relationship with my food. This where we differ from other Twelve Steppers. With the exception of a few binge foods, I cannot put down my drug. I think it is important to eat healthfully, and maybe I could be gentler about it.

I pray to adopt the new practice of expressing gratitude to my HP in my food and to open myself to my HP teaching and nourishing me through my food.

-- Laura K., Baltimore, Maryland USA

From OA’s Lifeline – A Meeting on the Go, Lifeline 50th Anniversary 1965-2015 Nov/Dec 2015, p. 7
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