I think it’s safe to say we’ve all argued with a family member at some point. It’s inevitable when you are with them so much. I hate confrontation. I don’t know how to get rid of anger in a way that’s healthy, so I normally end up internalising all my feelings and taking it out on myself. I was doing this, in my usual fashion, after a conversation came up that upset me the other night. I don’t drink, but this person does (and had been that evening) I felt really shitty and cried all evening, but not knowing how to even begin a conversation about it with them afterwards, I just got more and more on edge.
Fast forward 24 hours and the same conversation topic was brought up. I commented back that the whole discussion was making me want to kill myself a bit so if we could stop that would be ideal. (Blunt I know, but honest!)
Well, it kicked off. Shouting, crying, walking out. All of it. And then it was just me and them on our own and I was being told things about my family which I just didn’t want to hear. How somebody else almost killed themselves, how one parent prefers a separate living space, how caring for somebody with mental illness has ruined X number of years…
I can’t fucking cope. I know that on the outside I come from a middle class family who loves me & wants to help me, but really nothing is perfect. My parents relationship isn’t exactly going swimmingly, and the stuff I was told the other night is haunting me. I’m not good at forgiveness when somebody has really hurt me. And this hit all the nerves. How do you move on?
It may be selfish, but seeing the flaws of my family is so triggering to my ED and I just wish I didn’t know anything sometimes. In some ways my knowledge of things that happened when I was growing up have made my relationship with my Mum really special. Lots of people don’t have the closeness we do. But equally, knowing a lot of the imperfections and difficulties in my family makes my house very triggering sometimes, and I wonder how different things might have been if I was less surrounded by certain issues in my household. Who knows!
If anyone has any experience or thoughts about trying to rekindle my relationship after all this drama with that one person, comment below 💕
To say I’d been emotional this week would be a huge understatement. Usually my medication makes me find it fairly hard to cry, but I seem to have turned into a physical embodiment of the song cry me a river. Graduation is approaching, and with that comes a lot of feelings. It’s definitely an exciting time, but I want to enjoy my last days of student classes and time with the people I’ve really bonded with over the last years. I think that some people have gotten too big for their boots, and others would leave today if they could, and so there is an air of “fuck this” in the atmosphere. In a girl dominated environment, the bitchiness has reached a high and I’m utterly sick of feeling that who I am isn’t good enough for those around me.
If I were a more confident person, I think I would have handled some disagreements and bitching this week in a way that didn’t destroy my sanity so much, but unfortunately I’m not in that place yet. Anything that has upset someone else has caused me such extreme inner pain that thoughts of suicide have been really prominent.
I’m typing as I’m sat on a train going home to see my family. There’s only so many times a girl can call her Mum crying before you just need a hug, right? So this weekend is going to be about me. Fuck everyone else for a brief moment in time, and let’s have time with my mummy and my animals.
I’ve been trapped in the cycle of feeling overwhelmed, being hysterical and crying, feeling guilty, then wanting to do something self destructing, and by the time that’s done, something else overwhelming has come along. It’s exhausting and I’m done with it. I’m also quietly anxious about waiting for a response from my dietitian, because I messaged her about how I’m feeling re wanting to lose weight and simultaneously recover. I know it’s dumb, but I need someone else to tell me it. No reply as yet, so I hope I didn’t make her mad.
Hope everyone is doing ok. Well done to anyone who made it to the end of the massive rant. 😂 xoxox
Yesterday I was listening to an episode of The Mental Illness Happy Hour podcast, where one of my favourite youtubes, Kati Morton, came on to speak about eating disorder, trauma, and mood disorders. (If you like podcasts and want to to listen, it’s free to download on the podcast app on iPhones 👌🏻)
There was one statement Kati made that just flicked on a lightbulb in my brain:
Eating disorders are all about calculations…. Purging doesn’t have to be vomiting. Anything you do to minus things in your calculations is a purge.
My own mind is driven on calculation. It isn’t as easy as counting calories; does a food feel safe? Does it smell a way that makes me feel ill? How much protein to cards does it have? Have I already had enough sugar today? This list is endless.
I spend hours everyday making decisions about food. Have I done enough to warrant eating? Is usually where it starts.
It comes as a constant surprise to me that I some really wonderful friends, because let’s face it, whatever we are doing I’m probably still hearing the voice in my head chattering on. I am lucky. But right now I feel like I don’t want to get better. Sure, I’d love all the benefits of recovery and being free from all the mental and physical difficulties, but I’m not thin enough. I’m not sick enough. I haven’t been ill enough yet to let go.
Awareness week has brought up a lot of emotions for me, as well as some changes to my treatment causing me to overthink. I like seeing ED stories and info popping up on social media and people talking about topics that can be very shame filled and lonely, but sometimes it raises my feelings of competition. It’s easy to believe I’m not that sick when I am overwhelmed with images of very underweight sufferers, or posts from those in inpatient because of medical complications. I admire all those who have turned their lives around, but from my disordered point of view I can’t accept what people say about how great recovered life is, because I’m too focused on my perceived failure at being ill.
To be referred back to the ED service I was using last year I have to go through the referral process again. My psychiatrist thankfully did a lot of that for me, but I now have to do medical monitoring for 4 weeks. I’m so terrified. I know that my current behaviours, which are really the ones I have carried with me the longest, put me into the anorexia category. My long term restriction was broken up with a period of bulimia (I was diagnosed and this is when I was using the service last year), so now it’s about my weight. My doctor is clearly going to be blind weighing me to see if I am losing weight enough for them to help.
I would want to die if I was told I wasn’t thin enough. I couldn’t handle that and I’m scared it’s going to come true.
It has been a few days since I decided to put some of the yoga class I went to into my daily life.
It’s actually going well.
I have had some early mornings, and therefore done my 20-30 minute practice in the evening, but both times of day feel good for me. I like how I feel when I’m stretching with my eyes closed, alone, with quiet, meditative music in the background. Each day so far, I’ve been glad that I made the effort.
In my dance training during term time, it can be hard to stretch effectively after a long day, but the short routine I’ve been doing could definitely work in that scenario too.
In terms of mentality I have noticed something quite significant. I’ve noticed that I set a goal (to try doing some yoga each day this week) and I’m achieving it. My usual harsh mindset could have set me up to fail. My negative voice would have required me to do at least an hour, only in the morning, adding 5 minutes a day etc etc, and any small diversion from the plan would have meant I had ruined it.
So basically all this rambling would have been explained just as well by the quote alone 😂 I saw it today, and thought it was all too well timed for me to not write about!
Recovery is a pretty weighty word. It means so many things: physical health, mental health, freedom from my own mind.
There’s this idea that recovery would be this perfect life where everything is easy to handle, but in reality it isn’t that way. Recovery is choosing to change. Recovery is trying even when it’s difficult. Recovery begins when you hate where you are in that moment and vow to change. Recovery is asking for help.
Recovery doesn’t mean you are fixed.
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.
I feel like I am always waiting to be thin enough. Ever since I gained weight from developing bulimia during my anorexia “recovery” I have been longing for thinness. Of course, those around me thought my weight gain was great… I however thought I was the most disgusting failure.
I know I’ve lost weight consistently for several months now. Others have noticed it. But because people know I have an ED, it’s different to before. Nobody says I’m too thin or whatever because they already know my problem. It’s fucking annoying.
I’m waiting for outside validation that my body is unhealthily thin. That time has gone. People are aware of my ED, so I’m just waiting. Waiting to disappear it feels like.
At the same time I am challenging myself and working on some aspects of recovery… Just not the weight bit.
It’s the same old dilemma.
It is a well known fact that complete recovery from a mental illness requires motivation and action which only the sufferer can give. Lots of people struggle; lots of those people won’t get better.
I was diagnosed with OCD not long ago. If I could wake up free of it tomorrow, I wouldn’t hesitate.
Ditto my depression.
Ditto panic attacks.
But my eating disorder is…. Special. It’s special in the sense that it feels like it is my own, unique possession. I have known that voice in my mind for a very long time. I have also had my weight be a symbol of my worth and happiness since as young as 8 years old.
Having an eating disorder makes you feel like you are doing something. It fills your mind, your time, your dreams. You want to be recovered and have a new and wonderful life, but not until you have “succeeded” at sickness.
It’s confusing, painful, and tiring.
Every day I listen to endless self critical thoughts while constantly checking whether or not each body part is getting smaller. I like everything that normal people hate: feeling my bones, not having big boobs, only having a small amount covering my skeleton.
My obsession with controlling my life and my happiness using food and my body is a constant source of emotional pain, but I have some incredible friends in my life.
I know there are a handful of kind, loving people who will always be there for me, no exceptions. I might FEEL alone, but I am cared for. I am lucky to have the best friends in the world to simply listen. They can’t fix me when I’m not sure about recovery, but they are there. Always with kind words, or even something to make me laugh. I hope I give them the love they are always offering to me.
So I recently got the Timehop app on my phone and it inspired me to look back at some old blog posts. I usually just write and post! No re-reads or alterations, because my blog is a way for me to organise my thoughts.
I was curious, but not nervous to read my old entries, but I was surprisingly emotional when I saw them. I had forgotten many of the horrible, lonely, desperate stories I wrote about, as well as some amazing memories that I documented.
I guess it has taught me that no mental illness stays the same . Whether it gets worse or better, life changes and so our disorders change too.
It was an important realisation for me, seeming as one of my biggest ed thoughts is that I’m not sick enough/ I have been more sick, deserving, thin…. But all in all, I was sick then, and I’m still sick now. But sickness is slowly teaching me the value of wellness & one day, I want to be able to be in a position to appreciate every day of wellness as a gift.
I might still suffer, but I’m no longer silent; no longer alone; and no longer hateful of those helping me.
Change takes time, and I am getting better at facing my struggles and the outside world with patience.