I saw a few people I haven’t seen for a while today. It was nice to catch up and we sat and talked for hours. One of them said “you’ve changed” which I of course associated with fatness. Thankfully , she finished the sentence with this:
“Your personality isn’t different. It’s your eyes. In your eyes you seem different. I bet you don’t have panic attacks everyday anymore”
And I don’t. I know that is mostly because I’m on medication now, but she said that the reason didn’t matter. If they help , then take them!
It got me thinking about how my mentally has changed over the course of my illness. While I have fewer panic attacks, my ed patterns are no less extreme and I still self harm. I have slightly more patience with myself and a greater understanding of my mental illnesses. All in all, I am very much in the middle of my illness, but it was nice for someone to make a positive comment about me, as the panic attacks are one bit of the puzzle that has become a little less negative.

I have done some good things… not many, but still…

I just read over some stuff I wrote about a year ago about how I was feeling. I can proudly say that although I still suffer from an extremely obsessive relationship with food, control and exercise, I am much better at keeping my anxiety at a lower level than I was.

I am still a very anxious person; I still get regular panic attacks, but these are no longer responsible for taking up 2 or more hours of every single day. It has been by no means easy to change, and I hope that when I recover from my eating disorder I will stop having them altogether.


Random thoughts (same as usual really!)

I have a big rant to go on to start with, so going to get that out the way first…

Today I saw a friend who I haven’t seen for quite a while. She asked me how things were going ed/ depression/ anxiety wise, and I said that they were up and down but “fine”. Obviously they aren’t, as I feel totally unstable, but it wasn’t the time to say! Her response was “well you’re obviously doing some things right, like, you haven’t ended up in hospital”

My ed reaction to this was OH MY GOD SHE DOESN’T THINK I’VE LOST WEIGHT, SHE MUST THINK I’M FAT. This thought has been playing on my mind since the moment she said it. I suppose she may not have been referring to weight at all- I hope now! But I just hear the ed telling me that I’m tricking myself into being ok if I believe that.

On quite a different note, my evening ended with a family member commenting how thin I have gotten since I was home at Christmas. As usual, I couldn’t formulate a response and just kinda shrugged. Part of me is delighted at their statement, while part of me wants to curl up in a hole of confusion as I get less and less able to know what the hell I actually look like anymore!

My next worry is the coming weekend. I’m going with my parents to another town to see some relatives. We are going out to lunch. I don’t have to eat, but after the “are you eating? you’ve gotten thin” fiasco this evening, maybe people will leave me be if I do eat? But then there’s the possiblity I might have a panic attack if I try which I frankly don’t have the energy for at the moment. Ah what to do?!

I’ve been thinking a lot today about how food impacts my family generally. Since a young age, eating out and eating bad foods has always been a treat, a birthday thing, a celebration of an achievement. And I guess I do classify food as a treat, yet it has become something that I can never do enough to earn. Both my parents have quite focused relationships with their bodies and food: one has been phasey and researched into health and dieting extensively, while the other has only recently managed to successfully lose excess weight. My whole life I have watched the latter do a hundred and one different diets and always put the weight (and more) back on when it eventually fell apart.

I would never blame anybody else for my problems, but I suppose it isn’t surprising that I have developed pride in being able to lose weight & attached a sense of achievement and necessity in doing so. Couple that with a perfeccionist personality and lack of confidence and BAM…

As it is 11.30 pm I think it is time for bed. Zzzzzz

Being strong.

There are times when I feel far from strong, but in reality I know that I have to be strong to still be doing anything in life besides sitting in a food, weight and worry dominated world. Yes, these things do occupy my brain heavily & regularly stop me from having a normal social life, or taking part in some things, but I do get through each day and there are things in my life that ARE positive.

Whenever I am faced with a depression quiz by a therapist or doctor, the result is overwhelmingly negative- but even the most depressed person in the world does have tiny glimpses of light in the darkness. I guess the problem is that mental illness puts up its own shield, so that when your ability to be rational is really, really essential, you just can’t. Like when I feel so down that I wish I didn’t exist, or I am so anxious that I’m not thin enough that I stay at home, I can’t let my intelligent voice enter the argument. There is no option. There is no control. The coping mechanism is ineffective, yet addictive at the same time.

I spoke to that person at college today and they really made me realise that I am achieving something good simply by being strong enough to keep things together at all! I know my current food situation is not brilliant and my emotional stability is pretty crap, but everyday I face challenges that most people don’t: to get through the day by thinking slowly (in order to have as few panic attacks as possible) & to be outwardly calm when preparing or eating any food that I do have. Just managing my anxiety is a pretty hefty task, as is giving myself just enough energy to get to the end of my classes (even if I collapse with exhaustion and cry when I get home because I’m so energyless…)

It might not be perfect at the moment, but I could be less in control than I am, and that IS something. I suppose I hadn’t thought about it like that until today…

She was pleased with me, and so I am pleased with me I guess! I just hope I can keep holding on and that I am able to live with this more healthily in the future. 

“The biggest hurdle you have is winning your own personal battles. When you do this, you will be able to do everything you dream of doing and more” anonymous. 

A ramble about body shapes…

Whenever I meet somebody in the street, watch tv, or basically see anybody at all, I always analyse their body and work out which shape they are (pear, hourglass, apple etc) Body shapes have become another obsession for me. Annoyingly though, my ed makes it tough for me to figure out which one I am myself! In physical measurements my shoulders and hips are virtually the same- making me hourglass or ruler, but some days my thighs or bum seem massive, or my stomach seems to stick out, or my arms big…. the list of inadequacies is endless and variable (depending on the day of the week!)

No amount of research can change the fact that I will probably never be able to view my body without the negative, emotional ed voice kicking in. Besides, the ideal in the modern world doesn’t really fall into any category unless the word “thin” is placed before it. Most models have smaller measurements than some of the average weight people who are under 5″ that I know! 

I recently looked back at some photos from a while back that made me cry and have a panic attack at the time, but despite my ed still being absolutely present, they weren’t how I remembered them. I was smaller than I thought- not thin enough (but what is ever enough!?), but not at all the fat, gross person I saw when I looked at them when they were taken.

It is things like this which remind me just how damaging and taunting having an eating disorder can be, especially as in spite of this realisation about those photos, I would almost certainly react in the same emotional, disordered way if I was photographed right now. Why the hell do I hold on to this dumb voice in my head then?