This is the kitchen where we talk about food, life, and recovery—a spiritual path to healing and peace.

You are invited to keep coming back to A Cup of Kindness to share your experience, strength and hope; fears, doubts and insecurities; and to pick up information, inspiration … and have a little fun!

My story
In January 2007, at the age of 51, I joined a 12-step program and began my recovery from food addiction, losing 75 pounds in the process. Read more…

In January 2011, at the age of 55, I began my recovery from a multi-trauma accident, 36 fractures, damaged lungs, and post traumatic stress. Read more…

I am deeply grateful for all the kindnesses, large and small, offered to me in recovery. Here I am... alive… still making progress … still not perfect … finding a new way forward in a growing community of women and men who share a lot in common around food and life.

I hope you'll join me in this kitchen and let me know what's cooking with you.

A Cup of Kindness

Open Heart Project


“How do you not eat??”

tea time


I’ve gotten this question before. “How do you not eat??”

I know where it’s coming from. Before I found 12-Step Recovery, before I understood that I was a food addict, when it used to cross my mind to eat, in those rare moments when there was enough of a pause to consider the thought, it felt like if I didn’t eat I could die! No joke.

So, how was I finally able to not eat beyond my weighed and measured meals? Here were some of the tools I used. In the beginning I used them every day. Gradually, they became less and less necessary. But life happens, and since my habitual reaction to life is to eat, these tools still come in handy.

Ask G-d for help.

Say, “Thank you, G-d, that’s not my food.” And I used to say, “That’s heroin to me.” And, when catching a glimpse of a decorated sugar/flour product, “What a pretty art project.”

Check for HALT – Hungry-Angry-Lonely-Tired

Make a phone call to another food addict.

Have a hot drink and a moment of stillness.

Go for a walk.

Jump up and down three times.

Breathe deeply.

Remember that what I do today, I will most likely do tomorrow.

Think, if not today, then when?

Remember, it’s just for today.

A round of yoga sun salutations.

Make a gratitude list.

Play the movie out to the end:

The movie called “Taking the Bite” ends with going to bed miserable… waking up unhappy and in a fog… a headache and a queazy stomach from even a small amount of flour and sugar… gaining weight… struggling with cravings for days after even just one bite… disappointment in myself for not matching my actions to my intentions… fear, doubt, and insecurity… physical, mental and spiritual disconnection.

The movie called “NOT Taking the Bite” ends with a strengthened sense of safety, faith, integrity, and confidence… feeling healthy, happy, joyous and free… peace and serenity… being of service… interest in others… clarity… enhanced intuition… understanding how to handle difficult situations… a closer to connection to Deeper Wisdom and True Compassion… dwelling in Beauty.

Thank you to all those food addicts in recovery for leading the way! I’m not perfect, but, thanks to you, I’m making progress.

Love & Light,


 Image: Stefano Faravelli (Italian illustrator, b. 1959) – “Cerimonia del thè” (Tea ceremony)


7 Comments to “How do you not eat??”

  1. Theolyn's Gravatar Theolyn
    October 7, 2015 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

    I love the picture at the beginning of your writing!! I found very interesting, your “tools for not eating”. Thank you for sharing!


  2. Julie's Gravatar Julie
    October 8, 2015 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

    Thank you, Valerie. Very nicely said!


  3. Em's Gravatar Em
    October 8, 2015 at 11:35 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for the insightful post.

    I am realizing that aside from building a lifetime habit of eating regularly and eating well, the fact that I’ve agreed to certain artificial consequences as part of my recovery program helps me from stepping over the line. Sometimes it’s that basic … no, I don’t want to have to start over, no, I don’t want to let my sponsees down.

    Is it behavior modificattion? Dunno. But it seems to do the trick!

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>