Beginning My Inventory


My name is Annie.  I am a compulsive overeater.

In my meeting tonight, one of the women introduced herself as “a recovering compulsive overeater”.  I must say, I like the sound of that.  Yet I don’t think I have yet earned the “honor” of using that description for myself.  I am still struggling too much with the first couple of steps to think that I am in any sort of recovery.

I had a bit of a breakthrough this evening, though.  The others in that meeting have completed Step Four and so we were working on Step Five.  Step Four is to make an inventory of all in the past that has led to the addiction; Step Five is sharing that inventory with someone else.  It is that fifth step that has kept me from doing the fourth one.  I can be honest with myself, but to actually admit to another human being what I have done in the past that led me to where I am now….  Scary.  Very, very frightening to me.  But I thought of someone that would be perfect for the job.  She was a good friend in high school, one who I knew I could tell anything to do and I wouldn’t be judged.  Maybe it was because she had to wear two big hearing aids back then, and I didn’t judge her for that.  But I knew that anything I said to her would stay between us.  I also knew that while she wouldn’t try to force me to change anything, she would tell me her honest opinion (lovingly, if it was something I wouldn’t like to hear!) if I asked for it.  In the 15 or so years since graduation, she and I have stayed in touch.  Maybe we are not as close as we once were, but I still feel like I can trust her with this.  When I got home, one of the first things that I did was email her to see if she would be willing to help me with this.  A part of me was hoping she would say no!  But she didn’t.  She said she would be happy to help and that she is proud of me for facing this head on.  And knowing that she is the one who will have my inventory in her hands makes me feel more confident in being honest about the things I see in myself.

One other thing—I thought about two people who I have held bad feelings about for a long time.  A later step in the program is to make amends to those I have hurt.  These two people may not even know that I have had this anger and resentment toward them.  In all honesty, my feelings may not have hurt them in any way.  But I realized how those feelings have hurt me.  Releasing that anger and resentment to God by asking forgiveness from these people will help in my recovery.  So it looks like I will have a couple of letters to work on soon.


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