I was at my spiritual director's on Tuesday morning and we were having one of the conversations we have about once a month: why I keep on overeating and numbing myself with food when I have such a great life. Of course, she and I both know that I'm an addict but we also know from our many conversations that there's more to it than that.
She complimented me on the fact that after all these years together (seven and counting), I am moving to a place where I now overeat consciously, not unconsciously. I watch myself get up and get another sweet, fat whatever. Sometimes I even pause before I do it. But usually, most usually, I am working and I don't see any other way to help myself out of the restlessness, the boredom, the agitation than to eat and settle down. And as I am a workaholic and a productivity junkie, the cycle is well entrenched.
About 40 minutes into the session on Tuesday though, she made a radical suggestion: that I take a month off work this summer. Not a month of travel or vacation or sightseeing, but a month of inner work, of being with myself, of coming to understand what is going on and what choices I really have. I found this both thrilling and terrifying.
When I left her office a few minutes later, I hadn't said yes but I hadn't said no.