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


Reaching up and rooting down

Pitcher Pond 2014

Pitcher Pond, Northport, Maine 2014


One of the wonderful things about fellowship is the insight that can arise from sharing questions with each other.

I sent out a question this morning and my friend, Sandi R, responded with something so beautiful… it stopped me in my tracks.

My question was about remembering my essential goodness and how that reconciles with working the 12 Steps.

This all began a few days ago, when my friend, Sally C, told me of a query her women’s group had pondered. “What would my life be like if I never lost touch with my essential goodness?”

The idea is that I have an essential goodness….but that, at any time, my human conditioning (e.g., automatic negative thoughts, self-criticism, feelings of defectiveness, deficiency, not being enough, etc…) can kick in and I forget my essential goodness.

What situations arise in life that hijack my sense of goodness and sense of being enough? How does that make me feel in my heart and body? How does it change my behavior and interactions with others? What can I trust about myself? What can I trust about myself in all circumstances?

Great questions. Powerful questions.

Then this morning, I began re-reading One Breath at a Time: Buddhism and the Twelve Steps. Author/teacher Kevin Griffin says, “While many people tend to think of spirituality as looking up, toward the heights of perfection or saintliness, the Steps remind us that we must first look down, into the darkness of our souls, and see and accept our shadow before we attain an honest and authentic spiritual life. Until we explore the difficult side of our nature, our spiritual work will always lack depth and integrity. Our hearts and minds are complex and mysterious; they can only be known through the heroic work that begins with surrender.”

Perhaps this is like yoga. Reaching up and rooting down at the same time.

Sandi synthesized this for me perfectly. She said, “It is only by accepting our dark shadows that we can move on to allow our spiritual growth as well as allowing our essential goodness to emerge as our dominating self. When we are battling our dark shadow, we are blocking our essential goodness. Acceptance and surrender are our only solutions!”


Thank you, friends.

Love & Light,


4 Comments to Reaching up and rooting down

  1. Em's Gravatar Em
    September 10, 2014 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

    That is a thought-provoking question. Well actually, all of them are.

    I agree that Griffin seems to touch on something pretty elemental .. and I like YOUR synthesis with the yoga analogy.

    – Em

  2. nicola's Gravatar nicola
    September 10, 2014 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

    that’s a challenging though
    thank you
    will hold on to it

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