Ode to sponsors

I’m so grateful for my sponsor. That woman makes herself available to me every single day at the same time, late at night for her, whether she is tired or going out or whatever. Sometimes I reach her voicemail, but the majority of times she is there and we connect. I’m so, so grateful for this – without her constant support and my accountability to her, my abstinence would not live very long. When I withstand food calling me, I get to tell her the next day that I still abstained! She’s my cheerleader, and I’m like a little kid who says, “Look how well I did,” and she gives me her nod of approval.

Of course I am abstinent FOR ME. If I didn’t want it for myself, no sponsor could give it to me or make me want it. But my sponsor is the authority against which I weigh my decisions with food, and toward who I air my frustration about my weight. She loves me very practically. What she does for me is an expression of loving, and perhaps over time I will learn to love myself this way, too – not indulging, not overdisciplining; good, healthy, firm boundaries applied lovingly.

I wish I could give my sponsor a gift that would express my incredible gratitude. Funny enough, however, *I* am her gift – I get to keep her abstinent, too! The fact that she gets to sponsor me supports her abstinence. I am not a burden to her. She depends on my calling in a different way to my depending on calling her, but in any case, this relationship is vital for us both.

One of these days – God willing by the middle of January – I will take on a sponsee and I can only humbly aspire to be to them what my sponsor is to me.


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