Ah shit. I couldn’t think of any words that mean anything I want to write about beginning with z!
Instead I will write about coming to the end the alphabet. I’ve actually really liked having something to guide my posts and make me post more often. I’ve found it mentally helpful to blurt out some thoughts of an evening! I want to carry on writing on a schedule, but I haven’t decided what yet!
If you enjoyed anything in particular, then let me know 🙂
10 yes statements that are true for me:
Yes I listen to my eating disorder sometimes
Yes I wish I could be recovered
Yes I lack self confidence
Yes I am book smart, but not mind smart
Yes I love animals
Yes I am a worrier
Yes I believe in fate; I’m where I’m supposed to be right now
Yes my depression doesn’t mean I never laugh
Yes I love to bake
Yes I will get better
Feel free to carry on the 10 yes statements so everyone can learn more about each other 🙂
I have been reading the book Quiet by Susan Cain recently. She has studied the role of nature and nurture on personality, and writes in detail about what introversion and extroversion really are.
I used to think that my lack of interest in large social events was just my depression or ed talking, but the book has made me see that it’s simply who I am. Introverted doesn’t mean stupid, uncaring or shy. I actually care deeply about the circle of close people in my life, but I only enjoy seeing them in a quiet, sober, countryside walk kind of environment.
I really believe that having a mental illness teaches you more than you can imagine about yourself. Long periods of depression make happy times so much more previous and vivid I think.
Today I’m going to make a list for my brain about things I know about myself:
1. I have no patience!
2. I like small group social activities
3. I hate feeling overstimulated. Too much noise, too many people, two things playing over each other etc make me uncomfortable.
3. I am a thinker. I think about everything in a lot of detail.
4. I am a perfectionist.
5. I can get bored quickly and crave something to challenge my mind.
6. I love physical activity.
7. I can work in a group, but I feel at ease when I can do things uninterrupted and in my own way.
8. I hate odd numbers so I had to write this one to make it even!!
I admit that I’ve cheated today. There were too many appealing options, so here goes:
#happiness isn’t achieved through disordered activity. Happiness is genuine laughter; being so comfortable that silence with your friends is perfect; lying down in the sunshine; smelling sea air; feeling loved.
#hugs are a wonderful thing. There are so many moments (good and bad) where a hug can explicit far more than words. My ED makes me feel wary of some people touching the body that disgusts me so much, but when you’ve missed people it doesn’t matter. A hug with a best friend is one of life’s simple pleasures.
#hope I’m often pessimistic, but I hope my bleak expectations are wrong. I have a pocket of hope that recovery is possible for me.
#help I wish that I had received a good level of help when this all started. It’s just bad luck that I could only see this one incompetent “expert.” If you need help, get it. Waiting only makes change harder.
Today I learned that the letter G is a hard one to find a post for.. I’ve chosen to talk about growth because my disorders have moulded to stay with me as I’ve gotten older.
The 8 year old girl who thought she weighed too much became a 14 year old who cut out lunch. The critical voice got stronger and stronger, until the 14 year old became a 17 year old who went from anorexic to bulimic.
Now I’m 21 and accustomed to living with housemates not my family. I am “grown up” (in the legal sense… My enjoyment of stuffed animals suggests otherwise…)
In many ways, suffering makes you grow up because you have to understand your mind in a way other people do not; however I’ve missed out in other ways. I find it hard to cope healthily, meaning I end up needing other people more than Id like to admit.
G is also for Gain. These are the things I would gain from being recovered:
-less anxiety when eating socially
-better hair and skin
-more physical strength and health
-ability to enjoy treat foods
-not feeling guilt because others worry about me
So I guess this letter was an easy one to find something to post about! I have so many mixed thoughts this evening, so I’m going to use this post to write a letter to my ED and vent.
I say friend because you’re always there. You make me feel special and purposeful. I can’t be lonely with you to fill my head with ideas. Like a friend, you have had a big part in shaping who I am and my opinions and views about the world. I haven’t yet figured out what your purpose is, but I know you’ve given me a way to escape some difficult emotions over the years. Instead of dwelling on my inadequacy in comparison to my siblings, or my anger at the actions of others, you’ve provided me alternative focuses: food, my body, exercise….
On the other hand you are a vile piece of crap. You have made me feel so worthless and angry that I want to die. You have destroyed my confidence and my enjoyment of social eating. You make it hard to concentrate wholly on anything because you sit there and chatter at me all day long. I would love to perform abroad, travel, someday get married and buy a house, but your goals for me are very different. You like to keep me sick by telling me I’m not sick enough. You say that once I’m underweight enough it will be acceptable to engage in recovery fully. I would never dream of talking to my friends the way you talk to me.
You just want to fucking kill me. You want me dead. 0 pounds. 0 life. 0 feelings. That would be a winning outcome for you. But when I die, you die, so what the fuck is the point?!
I’m done with feeling this much pain all the time. I want to be allowed to laugh or smile without feeling bad about it.
I want to eat.
Today I wanted to make a list of my favourite distraction tools that I use to help me in difficult moments. I will admit that it’s easy to say “just distract yourself” and much harder to actually do it, but it is helpful if you can get the impotus to try 🙂
In no particular order:
1. Colouring it turns out that adult colouring books exist and are very pretty! The Mindfulness Colouring Book is my current one.
2. Cuddle a pet obviously this does require a pet to be effective… But I cuddle a teddy when there’s a lack of animals around! But seriously, giving my dogs or cats some attention makes me feel physically warm inside. It makes me feel safe and loved.
3. Watching a favourite tv series from the beginning as long as your favourite thing isn’t super serious then this one is great!
4. Enjoy the wonder that is youtube. Kati morton has amazing mental health videos on her channel (Click here to see)and I also love Grace Helbig for entertainment. She is simply hilarious.
5. Phone somebody just chat. Listen to their stories and just separate from your own life briefly.
6. Listen to music or even create a whole new playlist 😉
7. Write, draw,or blog about what’s on your mind
8. Do something for yourself my favourites are buying a Costa, painting my nails or having a hot bubble bath.
There are so many ideas I had for this post (maybe when the alphabet gets tricky I will revisit C…)
I chose to talk about categories because I had an experience in a shop today which made it relevant. There was a discussion between other shoppers about clothes sizing, and how each shop is different, a size whatever is “too large”, so and so is losing weight… The usual chatter. I just suddenly realised how life is always about being in a category. What social class are you? What body shape are you? What hair colour do you have? Are you quiet or loud? Anxious or mellow? Caucasian or black? The list is literally endless.
Throughout my life I have been influenced by people who make decisions unaffected by the trends. I like my clothes to be my style, not necessarily in mainstream fashion; I like being introverted and spending a night alone over a big party; I like to say the sarcastic nonsense that perhaps other people wouldn’t say aloud. Basically I always want to be individual.
But then my eating disorder came into the mix. Unlike other aspects of my life, I have obsessions with conforming totally to my disorder’s stereotypes. It has become very important to me to “look the part.”
To fit into the categories of mental illnesses validates my experiences.
I’m lucky to have people that love me for my individuality, and have patience with my obsessions.
So I had a really calm, pleasant morning walking on the beach. (I’m so jealous my family live so close to such a gorgeous sea front!)
My mum insisted on taking photos. I find photos quite triggering because I am always of afraid of how I look. I have bottled up my feelings about things like this many times, and today the bottle burst. It ended up upsetting everyone, but atleast I’m not varying those feelings by myself now. I know their upset is just because they care, but if I don’t look ill then I’m not in my eyes. It’s so hard to accept.