Thank God I Was Fat

By: TRICIA GREAVES
Presented By: Jeff Sohler

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Thank God I...™ Stories of Inspiration for Every Situation
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INTRODUCTION
by John Castagnini

IMPORTANT... Please Do Not Skip This Section! Why this ebook? What makes it so different? Not only are these answers important, they are integral to your understanding of the story presented here. Please do not skip over this brief introduction in your eagerness to get to the meat of the ebook itself. When I first thought to include Thank God I Was Raped as one of the stories for Thank God I...™ Volume 1, the concept sent chills through my spine. Could anyone who’s endured this brutal, horrifying experience really embrace these words? Over the years, I’ve consulted with countless women during their rape recovery. I chose the title after witnessing what transpires for them when they come to this conclusion of gratitude. What became quite apparent over a course of thousands upon thousands of conversations is that we only evolve past the mental traum a from such a happening when we can hold “the love for it in our hearts”

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What is meant by “God”? God — Certainly, the biggest three-letter word ever created. Grand Organized Designer best describes the God referred to in the Thank God I...™ books, website educational material and seminars. The thousands of people sharing their stories in this series all perceive God in their own light. Thank God I...™ is about this network of people, willing to move beyond having the right “name” for God. Even the word “God” itself cannot finite the infinite. Rather, God refers to a system governing the brilliance of what is, and is not.

What this book series is not supposed to be. This series does not condone or promote any of the acts the writers have experienced, nor do we suggest in any way that anyone should either commit any of these acts or subject themselves to any of these acts. This series also does not promote or label any specific kind of behavior as “right” or “wrong”, nor were the stories written or the book published for the purpose of suggesting that anyone rationalize their actions or behavior.
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In addition, the Thank God I...™ series does not promote or deny any religion. Rather, it honors the existence of religion and all things as part of a perfect creation. What is Thank God I...™ about? Our intention with this series is to convey this one key principle: Perfection permeates everything. Each time we fail to recognize this principle, the next lesson to come our way will once again offer us the opportunity to see the perfection and break through into freedom. In fact, finding perfection in the pain and pleasure of our own personal tribulations is the only way we will ever liberate ourselves from the bondage of patterns. Whether it comes in a day, a year, or a lifetime away, situations will come into our lives that will force us to become thankful for “what was,” and to whole-heartedly experience “what is.” What is meant by “Thanking God”? During the creation phase of this series, we were fortunate to have as our ever-efficient assistant, Cassandra Gatzow, a beautiful twenty-three-year-old writer and poet. Just prior to coming to work with us, Cassandra was diagnosed with cervical cancer. A little over a year and a half later, the cancer spread and she left this world before the first book launched.

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After Cassandra passed, my heart was struck by the words she put to the page as she endured this experience. She wrote of her earth angels and her explorations as she left her body to “dance with her angels.” She did not write about her passing, she wrote about Thank God I...™ living as she moved through her life’s greatest test, and her life’s ending. She viewed each person, each moment as precious. How fortunate she was, to see God in the now. Imagine — this is what she wrote about her cancer: “Tears fill my eyes daily with gratitude for every moment and every breath. It has allowed me to go after my dreams, to live from my heart, and to be truly free. I thank God for my cancer and for allowing me to reach a place in me that I don’t think would have been possible without this experience. I am now twentythree and feel that I have stepped into my skin proudly. I have felt an inner peace that many don’t find until later in life. I am truly grateful for all my earth angels and want to thank them for sharing with me this wonderful journey” ...Cassandra There are 4 million tasks to accomplish in order to bring the Thank God I...™ network to the standard of our vision. Thank you, Cassandra, for reminding me why
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Thank God I...™ was conceived in the first place. Thanking God is about the above. Not just what is above this sentence; it is about what is above, guiding us at every moment. Beyond the pain, chaos, and confusion of our circumstance exists true perfection. Thanking God is about finding this perfection. This place of thanking God might seem nearly impossible to find, but it is the only place we will find ourselves. Thank God I...™ is true “gratitude”. Sure, we all hear about the “good things” that people are grateful for in their lives. But, is this gratitude? Thank God I...™ gratitude is about a state of being. It is about a state of inspiration, non-judgment, and presence. Thank God I...™ gratitude is beyond the illusion of positive or negative. It is beyond the lies of “good” and “evil”. Thank God I...™ . gratitude is about finding God in every word, thought, and deed. In spirit, we are beyond the illusion of pain or pleasure and we are present with spirit. Thank God I...™ gratitude is about equal love for all that is, as it is, was, or ever shall become. Gratitude is loving what we don’t “like” as much as loving what we do “like”. The diversity of authors and experiences The intention of this series is to reach all of humanity,
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every single unique creation. We did not base the selection of contributions to this series upon any faith or religious orientation. Each selected author took a former challenge into their heart. The diversity of authors spans religions, countries, professions, age, race, nationality, and definitely experiences. They range from strippers to doctors, from politicians to stayat-home moms, and whoever they are, gratitude rules. From alcoholism to molestation or rape, the law of gratitude prevails with each of our authors. Thankfulness for whatever is, or is not, ultimately rules every one of our kingdoms. The vision of Thank God I...™ Little did I imagine how lightning-fast Thank God I...™ would circle the world. This network includes thousands of contributors, reaching millions of people, sharing not only their stories, but also their answers! Beyond the books, and the online community, we offer worldwide conference calls, workshops, and seminars! The vision of this series will provide everyone within specific communities information in order to evolve past the emotions that are holding them back. The people and the project are revolutionary. “All things in nature proceed from certain necessity and with the utmost perfection.” ...Baruch Spinoza
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Thank God I Was Fat

TRICIA GREAVES

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Fatty Patty went to town, rolling her blubber up and down. First she stopped at the candy shop, and then she bought a lollipop.? That's one of the self-effacing songs I made up about myself in my youth. I was a chubby kid, with a huge roll of fat on my stomach, which I used to collect in my two hands and squeeze in an attempt to measure it. It protruded from my body in a way that made me look like a pregnant eleven-yearold . . . a freak of nature. My mother did her best to get me to suck it in, sometimes by physically putting her hand on it and pushing. I hated her for that intrusion, of course, and just used it as an excuse to eat more. On Sunday nights, I would routinely get up in the middle of the night to vomit all the junk I'd stuffed down over the weekend...popcorn, pizza, brownies, and doughnuts. (I had a weak stomach, but with enough practice, I got over it.) How would you feel, being so fat . . . and suffering the consequences? I loathed it. I was one of the last picked for games at school; I was ugly; the boys I obsessed about weren't interested in me; I was sluggish and asthmatic in sports; and I couldn't even understand why my friends would want to hang out with me. On top of that, my personality was a little off. I was loud, obnoxious, and a clown. I liked to tease others in "good fun" but often went too far,
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causing pain. Ironically, I was also a "peoplepleaser" and would do anything to get people to like me. This drove my self-esteem down to subterranean levels. What I wanted most was to be thin and have a boyfriend. Yet adolescence brought more weight gain. My face was as round as a pumpkin. I knew I had a social disadvantage, so I compensated for my "handicap" by doing things to be noticed and to be liked. I was on the student council, I had many "popular" friends, and I was involved in many activities. In high school, my weight increased in proportion to my sexual activity. I was pretty messed up sexually due to early childhood sexual abuse, and I used food and the protection of fat to cope. I was obsessed with sex, masturbation, and boys, and suffered endless shame and guilt because of it. I drowned the guilt with alcohol and blackouts and created more shame in the process. I used food to quell my many nameless fears. I lived in fear -- afraid of what others thought of me, afraid of failing, afraid of succeeding, afraid of my feelings, afraid of the responsibilities that came with being alive! Food brought me comfort. I would forget my fears when I was overeating and full. I wouldn't feel a thing. For example, I played goalie in lacrosse, and there
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wasn't a day that I wasn't terrified of having those balls whipped at me. (It never occurred to me to play another position . . . I was hooked on the extra attention, and after all, the team needed me.) On game days, I was anxious, tense, and full of dread, but macaroni and cheese, French fries, and cookies fixed that. I would stuff myself at lunch and waddle out to the field to gear up. In full gear, I looked like the Michelin man! I determined that I would be different in college -- I was going to be thin and popular! (Why I thought a change of location would change who I was and how I reacted to life, I have no idea.) The only thing that changed was that I was away from my mother's critical eye and could therefore eat and drink with abandon. I joined Overeaters Anonymous in my second year of college and loved the camaraderie of the meetings. I finally found "my kind": people who were as weird about food as I was! After three years in OA, however, nothing had significantly changed. My weight continued to yo-yo. I needed something more, yet convinced that OA was the "last house on the block," I despaired of ever finding a true solution. One day I heard a woman share who suffered from hopeless bulimia. I saw her struggle for nine months, and then in two weeks she was free from the
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obsession to overeat. I was stunned. I had witnessed a miracle, and I wanted the same miracle for myself. She gave me the phone number of a man who specialized in helping people who have "tried everything" to overcome their compulsive eating and were out of options. With this man's gift of love, time, and attention, I was able to finally look under the hood of my food obsession and discover the underlying soul-sickness that plagued me. I followed a formula of healing called "Metasteps" that successfully healed my compulsion to overeat -- and to engage in any other self-destructive action. Why am I grateful for the experience of being fat? Because I suffered in a way that makes me sensitive to others who still suffer. I understand the pain of selfloathing. I understand the powerlessness of not being able to stop when my body has long since indicated it's time. I know how it feels to perceive myself to be the ugliest person in the room, whom no one would desire. I understand the despair of having it "together" on the outside and writhing in psychic pain on the inside. I know these things. Only someone who has experienced this unique pain can truly understand. And because I have found a way up and out, I am uniquely qualified to help others discover a way out, as well. Snippets of advice like "follow a plan,"
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"join a gym," "just cut back," or (my favorite) "everything in moderation" aren"t going to work for someone like me. These well-meaning suggestions from doctors, family, and friends only made me feel like a bigger pariah. Fortunately, I am able to offer something much deeper and lasting to those I have the opportunity to help. There is a language of the heart that can actually heal another's compulsion. That language healed me, and through my work, I do my best to share it with others. Searching for an answer to my food problem led me to address the deeper pain from which I suffered, pain which had nothing to do with food or weight. Little good could come to me if I didn't heal the dissatisfaction I felt about myself. I learned that excess food served two functions for me: painkiller and punishment. When I overate, I experienced a calming, numbing sensation, a safety from the storm. But since I couldn't stop myself from eating too much, the food I ate quickly became a punishment, a way for me to hurt my body and hate myself for my lack of control. Why did I need the comfort of a painkiller? Because the thoughts churning inside seemed too hard to feel. Why did I inflict punishment on myself? Because at some level I felt, I deserved to feel bad and suffer. Addressing the feelings inside, as well as the deep-seated worthlessness was my only hope of experiencing lasting weight loss.
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Both the pain and the self-loathing came from many aspects of my personality that are typical of emotional eaters. For instance, I rarely honestly expressed my emotions for fear of how I would be perceived. This caused me to use food to bury my unexpressed feelings alive instead. Another example was my habit of trying to get people to like me by denying my needs in favor of theirs. As a result, I'd burn with resentment and console myself with food. Furthermore, my persistently low selfesteem drove me to seek validation from bosses and coworkers for my Herculean efforts and extended hours at my job. I routinely ended my long day feeling burned out and attempting to refuel with a binge. How could any weight-loss scheme tap these root causes (and there are many more than I've mentioned here)? The truth is that they couldn't. My process of recovery involved building an entirely new relationship with myself and with others. When I came to see how closely my disordered eating mirrored my disordered living and thinking, I realized the necessity of going within. Diets or a gastric bypass weren't going to change my head, my heart, and my reactions to life. Being fat has led me to seek wisdom and love beyond nutritional expertise and skinny jeans. It has transformed my life and given me the opportunity to help others in their own transformation. In addition,
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through the grace of God, it has delivered me to freedom from the vise grip of emotional eating...one day at a time. . . .

Tricia Greaves is the founder of Be Totally Free!, a nonprofit offering hope and a real solution to those struggling with eating disorders, emotional eating, weight loss, and many various addictions. Having lost fifty pounds and overcoming several addictions herself, Tricia offers the unique, patented "Metasteps" solution, which addresses the underlying causes of all addictions, and which is based entirely on her personal experience of what actually works. People who have tried "everything" to stop are able to finally experience total freedom through Be Totally Free! To learn more and to receive your own Free "JumpStart Kit," visit www.BeTotallyFree.com.

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