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Motilium (Domperidone)

Food was a family affair. My brothers and I were ? born in the years following World War II and we were caught up in the race for affluence and security one symbol of which was unlimited food. Any occasion called for a feast: birthdays, holidays, vacations, Sunday excursions, births, deaths, weddings, reunions. Once the basic overeating pattern was established, I elaborated on it. No matter where I went to school there was always a store or pastry shop or candy counter I could patronize, and I resorted to stealing nickels and dimes and quarters from my father’s change box to supplement my inadequate allowance.
At home I ate anything I could get my hands on, straight from the box, can or jar, cooked or uncooked, baked or unbaked; it made no difference. I had no discriminating tastes. Canned spaghetti tasted as delicious to me as any treasured Italian family recipe. I couldn’t even appreciate my German grandmother’s baking as any better than Sara Lee’s. I lost babysitting jobs because I ate everything except the baby.
My compulsive overeating may have had something to do with my older brother’s chronic illness. He spent his entire childhood in and out of hospitals and my parents were preoccupied with his health. Just as his disease was brought under control and I was struggling through adolescence, my younger brother developed schizophrenia, and my parents’ concern shifted to him. Somehow, in the midst of all this, food became my reward and punishment, love and companionship.
By the time I was in high school, I weighed 150 pounds, a weight below which I have never fallen in my adult life. I carried it well — in the same place a barrel does — and the straight skirts, tucked-in blouses and belted shirtwaists then in fashion made it impossible to disguise.
I never dated, and I quickly resigned myself to cutting remarks and snickers when my stomach growled in class. I eventually kept mostly to myself to avoid getting hurt, and I convinced myself that this was the way I wanted it.
After graduating from college, I became a high school librarian in a small school. I moved in with two college friends who were also teaching there and was ready to believe I had it made for the rest of my life. During the second year, reality set in and teaching became a serious business. Soon it deteriorated into a battle. My first major disappointment was the realization that I was not going to make it in the profession. I didn’t see the pattern building until it was too late, but that failure made me resentful and angry. I was angry at the kids because in spite of my best efforts to direct and control their lives, they failed me and that reflected on me. I was angry at the principal, whom I considered incompetent; I was angry at the other teachers who seemed successful; I was angry at my parents because I believed they had pressured me into teaching; and I was angry at myself for letting things get out of control, including my weight which had gone up 38 pounds in four years.
I fought it every way I could, from letters to Dear Abby to psychiatric counseling, from memberships in health spas and diet clubs to books on losing weight. Nothing worked. Everything emphasized food. I was still looking forward to eleven o’clock for the celery sticks, counting the minutes until I could eat the apple I had saved from lunch, planning menus and substitutions that read like computer printouts. As an example of my obsessiveness, I had by that time collected forty-three cookbooks and nine shoeboxes of clipped recipes. (You won’t find this food emphasis in OA. The emphasis is on you and me and us as people, not on food.)
The amazing thing about this most important time in my life is that through it all I never even knew I was angry. I mean, after all, everybody else was failing me; it was their fault, not mine. Lord knows I was trying. Outwardly, I was controlled, calm, in command. Inwardly, the growing anger was eating me up and I was trying to stop it with food.
It was inevitable that a crisis would occur with such pressures building, and in my fifth and final year of teaching it did. I almost killed a student in one blinding moment of anger that broke through. In February of that year, I was on hall duty and enduring the usual hassles that go with the job. That particular day Tommy Troublemaker chose to make himself unbearable. I had just shooed him down the stairs for the third time, then stepped into a teacher’s room. She was the play director and she showed me some of the props her people had been collecting, one of which was a heavy iron crowbar. I was standing by her desk talking, my hand on that crowbar, when Tommy sauntered through the door with some smart remark. In a flash of anger, my hand closed around the crowbar and raised it. Had the teacher not grabbed my wrist, I probably would have taken Tommy’s head off, although I can’t be sure of that.
I laid the crowbar back on the desk and went to the superintendent’s office, where I wrote out my resignation on the back of a lunch menu and turned it in. For the three months remaining in the school year, that woman and two other good friends ran interference for me, and there were no further incidents. But I lived in fear of what might happen and in agony over what I had found out about myself.
When school was over, I moved out of the state with the sole intention of vegetating for a year and bringing myself and my weight under control. Actually, I wasn’t moving to a place so much as I was moving away from people and things. Among them was a man who wanted to marry me; I thought there must be something wrong with him if he could love me.
The most joyous discovery I made upon my arrival in my new community was supermarkets that were open twenty-four hours a day I spent my first three weeks eating and watching television, crying, depressed. I never got dressed except to go out and buy food. For the first time in my life I knew what real loneliness was.
I began going to OA meetings soon after I got settled, but my first weeks with the program were exasperating. I was disagreeable, hostile and resentful that I had to be there at all. But mostly I was frightened that if I tried to follow the program and failed there was nothing left. Also, I am agnostic and my first impression was that I had happened upon a group of evangelists who would attempt to convince me that nothing could happen until I accepted their God.
They quickly disproved that. Once I stopped looking for flaws and began listening in earnest, I was able to find a higher power that works for me. My higher power is the group, the people, my friends.<�неиAbstinence and weight loss came only after I accepted the fact that this program is something I cannot manage alone; I need all the help I can get, and there’s no shame in that.
Many other physical symptoms of overeating have disappeared. Gone are dry skin, joint pains, sinusitis, headaches. I’m off thyroid after twenty-two years. I can cross my legs under a table without causing a commotion. My knee socks come up to my knees now. These are measurements that make me feel good about myself
Emotionally I am freer, and spiritually I am at peace with myself and with my higher power. The quality of my life is improving every day.
My salvation, if you will, came with the realization that being fat is not in my mind or my destiny, but is rather a symptom of a disease, compulsive overeating. Thanks to an incident that occurred during my first year in the program, I know that compulsive overeating is controllable, but not curable.
On that particular occasion, shortly before Christmas, I led an OA meeting during which I told the group that I was to be married — to the same man I had moved away from. I was feeling worthy for the first time in my life — open and loving. I flew to my parents’ home the next day for a long weekend and felt very proud of the way I resisted temptation and handled my food while there, because Christmas at home is a feast from beginning to end. I also dealt with my family’s rather hostile reaction to my marriage plans in what I considered a calm, adult manner. I even smiled benignly during all the hassles of holiday travel and returned home ready to begin a new year.
The next day I went to work and someone opened a box of chocolates. Within two hours I had eaten the entire thing, and it was supposed to have been shared among five people. I didn’t feel the least bit guilty about it. After work, I drove to a mall and bought my favorite binge foods. As an example of the extremes to which compulsive overeaters are driven, I was too ashamed to eat these things in public and couldn’t wait to get home, so in nine-degree weather in a car with no heat, I sat in the parking lot and ate the stuff with my gloves on and darn near froze to death.
Then I realized that within a short span of time, I was back to square one and doing the disgusting, revolting things I hated, and what was there to eat about anyway? I was happier than I had ever been in my life. I was to be married to someone I loved very much. My work was going well. I got A’s in my semester course work. I had many friends. My future was bright. Why did I feel the need to punish myself this way?<�неиI had no answer. I still don’t, but that’s not what matters. What matters is that I started the car and got to an OA meeting where I shared what I had just done.
OA people don’t judge or react with horror when they hear something like that. They listen, they talk, they suggest readings, they call me later to see how I’m doing, they stop in the middle of their day when I call to talk. With this help and encouragement, I was able to break the vicious rationalization that because I did it once, another time won’t hurt, or I’ll wait until January 1st and start all over again. I started again right then, and although the compulsive feeling didn’t leave me for days, I didn’t eat about it. And soon I was OK.
But I got a good dose of humility which I badly needed, and the complacency I was beginning to feel was gone permanently. I know now that this job is never done. But I take it a day at a time, twelve hours at a time, sometimes fifteen minutes at a time, and that’s the way I win.

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