Everyone has heard the adage: One day at a time. In recovery it was one I needed to hear often. In those rooms of beautiful souls resolved to live better, I heard so many incredibly helpful things, but this one was always true. It could be said a million different ways, but the brunt of it was this: go slow; think smaller; worry less; love more; breathe; it will all get done.
Recovery was humbling. Bulimia is an isolating, selfish endeavour. Anxious self-hatred turned way inward. But in those rooms lay an opportunity so precious and powerful I am not sure I could speak about it without my voice shaking.
To be honest. To admit when you mess up, back-track or judge the pants off of another. To tell your story with a raw, untarnished tongue. Honey never did make lies taste sweet and as a recovering sugar-coater, I learned this in those rooms. These are people who have seen hell, or are living it. They have no use for your half-truths, no patience for spinning bullshit.
But they’ll never say it out loud. It’s just that those rooms are sacred in a world where rarely anything ever is. Those rooms are for truth and compassion and shared experiences. Anything less falls fast to the floor, scurrying off to the corners to hide.
I have not been back since my three year abstinence anniversary. Why? I don’t know. One day at a time. I’m living one day at a time. It’s as though bulimia was a scourge, a plague that whipped me up and dropped me. The mess is mostly cleaned, but there are crumbs… There are tiny pieces that appear in my life as something new.
The guilt, the fear, the shame all wear different faces when they used to wear one.
One day at a time. With God. One day at a time.
And today let me give thanks to all those gorgeous people who shared their struggles with me. I owe my recovery to you, to God and those rooms. Your wisdom lives just beneath my skin. Your truth rules my conscience. Your love keeps me abstinent.
I will be back.