Saturday, 10 December 2016

A is for anxiety...

 For the last few weeks 
I've been struggling with crippling anxiety 
It's effecting everything 
My sleep
My mood 
My eating 
My energy levels 
Pretty much everything 
Mornings are my worst time of the day
I wake up 
Start to get ready for school
Then I start thinking
And get in to an argument with myself 
About whether to go in or not 
I feel a sense of dread 
Of impending doom 
Then I get diarrhoea
And I begin to panic 
This week 
I only went in two days 
The other days I stayed home 
I was annoyed with myself for not going in
And am generally being very hard on myself 
I've spoken to my doctor 
And the only suggestion he made was to get up earlier
He just doesn't get it 
He treats the medical issue 
I guess I need to be talking to someone who understands 
Out of sheer desperation 
I put a call out on Facebook
To ask people for ideas, suggestions 
Anything that might help me get through the day
I had a huge response 
And was blown away by how many people reached out 
A few people who I used to use drugs with contacted me 
They had also experienced addiction and mental health issues 
It just goes to show 
The fallout from drug abuse years later 
If I knew then what I know now 
Life would surely look very differently 
But hey 
It is what it is 

I had to make a decision 
Either continue my course and keep trying 
Or cut my losses 
And walk away from it 
Usually now is when I quit 
When things become tough 
But the stubbornness inside me is stopping me 
It would be easier if I didn't love my course so much 
At least then it would a no brainer
And easier to give up
But because I love it so much 
I want to figure out a way of dealing with this 
One way or another 
And look 
I've come through tougher stuff than this
I am truly blessed though 
To have an amazingly strong family around 
And brilliant friends 
Who continue to have my back.
So no
I'm not giving up 
Not just yet 
My tutor rang me yesterday 
To see how things were 
She told me that one of the girls has been exited from the course 
I guess that is a polite way of saying her ass was kicked off the course 
Because she has missed so much time 
I then panicked that the same would happen to me 
But my tutor assured me that because I had kept in close contact with staff
This other girl wasn't answering her phone 
So I got a doctors cert for this week
And I will start again afresh this Monday 
Day by day 
Step by step 
That's the way I'm going to do it 
No pressure 
No stress 
Done is better than perfect 

This month 
I celebrate one year in my recovery from anorexia and bulimia 
This time last year I made the decision to cyhoose life 
Rather than death 
Because that's what living with an ED is like 
It's a slow and tedious death 
As you literally starve yourself to death 
I am one of the lucky ones 
I made it out relatively unscathed 
I made it out alive!
Not everyone does 
This month last year I final had enough  
And started on this journey that we call recovery 
But it didn't have to be the new year 
That's just the way it happened for me 
Really and truly 
You can start your recovery at any time
And day
Any month 
As long as you choose  it at some point 

Ok friends 
I'm going to leave it at that for today
I posted my Christmas cards today 
So you should get them soon
Take care 
And look after each other
See you on the next post... 

Friday, 2 December 2016

Hanging on

I'm here 
I'm still here 
Even though I've been using Facebook more than blogger recently 
As it's quick and easy
And when I have zero energy after a day in school
I don't feel like writing a whole big spiel 
When I last left you
I had taken some time off school due to a funny tummy caused by anxiety
I really was struggling 
And I took about four days off
I went back this week
Although I missed today due to bad weather and icy conditions
But it's great to be back 
I missed my course 
My school friends 
The horses 
Yesterday I got to ride for the first time in a couple of weeks 
In the morning I was on Blue 
My little white friend 
We are pretty good buddies by this stage 
I spend time grooming him 
Tacking him up
He has a bad habit 
Which is called wind sucking 
Which means he bites on to his feeding trough
Arches his neck 
And sucks in the air
It releases a rush of endorphins 
And the horse gets addicted to it
I was telling my Mam about this yesterday 
And she said
'Ruby, trust you to get one horse who is a drug addict!'
Oh how we laughed 
It is funny though 
I try the distract Blue from the wind sucking 
But he is one determined boy
It's no secret in the yard that Blue is lazy 
He's also very small
And his trot is so neat 
If very slow 
And his canter 
Well when I can get him to canter 
It's just adorable 
He's like a little toy horse 
I'm developing a real sense soft spot for Blue 
In the lesson 
Blue was just not feeling it 
He was barely conscious 
Never mind awake 
And he just flat refused to canter for me 
But anyway 
I love him all the same 
In the afternoon 
I was on Bambi 
Who is just a joy 
And beautiful to boot 
Feistier than Blue 
She is pretty from head to tail 
And boy does she know it 
She is a lot more responsive 
So where as with Blue 
I've to give him a good kick to get going 
With Bambi 
She just needs a squeeze 
And a tap of the stick to canter
In our individual exercise 
We had to canter twice around the arena 
Which meant passing out the rest of the ride 
Blue was so funny 
When he had done one circuit 
He just slotted in behind Nikon
And in front of Jigsaw 
So nearly and perfectly 
I got Bambi to do it though 

I've been getting a lot of support since this anxiety has taken over 
I spoke to my tutor 
I'm seeing Mary again for a few weeks 
And I also have been seeing my school counsellor 
As well as help from my family and friends 
I am truly blessed to have so many good people in my life 
And it just makes life that bit easier 
Anxiety really is a silent assassin 
To the outsider 
It's not detectable 
But in my head 
There is a whirlwind going on
Thoughts and more thoughts 
Thinking and over thinking 
It's relentless negativity 
For me 
It leads to rash and impulsive actions 
Doing things without thinking them through
It also goes hand in hand with insecurity 
Low confidence 
Low self esteem 
And perfectionism 
The bottom line being that I think I'm a bad person 
And just not good enough
One of my tutors has been great 
She is our horsemanship tutor 
So she does horse theory with us on a Wednesday 
And come new out to the stables with us the following couple of days 
She gave me a ring on Tuesday 
To see how I was doing 
I was feeling pretty low 
And she told me some things that really helped 
She said my horse riding was one of the best in the group
And that I am really liked within the group
That I am a positive influence 
I can't tell you the lift it gave me to hear this 
I always felt like the dunce in horse riding 
That I did everything wrong 
I also thought people didn't like me at all
So to hear that I am very much liked is so reassuring 
I'm becoming aware that I need a lot of affirmation 
That I don't trust my own judgement as far as how I'm doing 
I'm sure that's ok
But I need to be able to assure myself 
Without getting it from others 
I'm hoping that doing this course will boost my confidence 
And I will start to see myself in a more positive light 
I mean I'm doing my best 
I really am 
Learning does not come easy to me
And I really need to work on it 
Especially around the theory 
I have an IT exam coming up too
I had the choice to take it before Christmas or after 
I'm think I'm going to take it after 
Just to give myself that extra bit of time 
I've also started studying in the evenings 
Just to go over stuff
And get it in to my head 
I'm feeling a lot better now 
And am optimistic about continuing my course 
I love it
I am in my element learning about horses 
I guess the dream is to own my own pony or horse
That would be in my wildest dreams 
I'm think it's possible 
It could happen 
And this course is perfect for learning all I need to know
I must say 
The course is fantastic 
The tutors 
The way it's run 
The course content 
It's very comprehensive
And gives a great foundation for learning about horses
I love it so much 

In other news 
Christmas is fast approaching 
I usually love it 
But this year in just not feeling it
So far anyway 
It's supposed to be the best time of year 
But of course it doesn't always happen that way 
It can often be a really stressful time 
I know many of my Christmases growing up were ruined by addiction
People drinking too much 
Family rows 
Bust ups and breakdowns 
Absolute disasters 
Our house is an alcohol free zone 
Anyone who comes here knows the score 
I really don't miss drinking 
I don't miss it at all
Especially the hAngovers 
When I drank at my staff party in the summer 
It took me days to recover 
The come down was horrific 
The fear 
The shame about what you did and said the night before 
The stupid things I did that seemed like a good idea at the time 
I enjoy my sobriety far more than that 
It is precious 
Christmas makes me feel very grateful for what I have 
A lovely comfortable house to live in 
A dry clean bed to sleep in 
Clothes on my back
Food in my fridge 
A loving and strong family around me
Two beautiful dogs at my feet 
Who I love beyond words 
Friends that I cherish 
A course that I love 
And a feeling of contentment that I don't think I have felt before 
What is important has changed radically for me this year 
This time last year I was relapsing 
Losing weight 
Not to mention my mind 
Controlling my weight was my priority 
I thought about it morning til night
Now I rarely think about it 
I don't weigh myself 
I have no idea what I weigh 
Android I don't want to know 
My clothes fit 
I feel strong and healthy 
My hair and nails and skin are in good condition 
And even if I did gain a little weight 
It's not the end of the world 
In the scheme of things 
It's not really important 
I don't know what  the turning point for me was 
I guess it was a couple of things 
Feeling sick and tired of feeling sick and tired 
Just having enough 
Realising that my ED was making me feel utterly miserable 
The fact that my body and mind could take no more 
Then I started horse riding 
And that helped me more than I can ever describe 
For me 
It was so important to fill the hole that my ED left 
With something positive 
And horse riding is that something positive 
Since I started equine assisted therapy back in March 
I'm have fallen in love with everything horsey 
I just can't get enough of it 
I am learning that it is so important to have a raisin d'ĂȘtre 
A reason to get up in the morning 
A purpose 
Something that warms your heart 
Your spirit 
Your soul 
It's amazing to be able to say it 
But I feel happy 
For the first time in my life 
I actually feel happy 
I hope my story will give others hope
I got through six years of drug addiction
And 15 years of disordered eating 
With all sorts of other little addictions along the way 
There is life after these issues 
I am walking talking proof of that 
So whatever you do
Never give up hope 
As long as we are breathing 
There is hope 

Below are some photos of my time during equine assisted therapy...

Wednesday, 23 November 2016

Time off

As I type this 
I am sitting in the bus station
Waiting for the bus home 
I went in to school this morning 
Just to give the bridal back that I was practising on 
I've decided to take a few days off
As I  am starting to struggle
Anxiety is getting the better of me 
And I'm struggling to get out the door n the morning 
I guess I haven't been looking after myself too well
I haven't been eating properly 
Or taking my meds correctly 
And I'm generally feeling run down and tired
Of course I turned to the one place I know I can go to write and get some much needed advice 
I feel like I have neglected this blog
And you my friends 
I'm sorry for that 
I've just been so busy trying to get through the week 
That at the end of the day I have zero energy left 
I have been using Facebook recently 
It's been fallout of the month 
And I've been very open there 
Maybe too open 
So I'm going to give it a rest for a while 
And just concentrate on getting well
I really don't want to give up my course 
But at the same time 
I need to take care of myself and my mental health 
So I missed yesterday 
And this morning was pretty horrible trying psych myself up to go in
I drive myself in to the bus 
And waited at the bus stop
I was having a fight with myself whether to go in or not 
But I had the bridal to return 
So I got on the bus 
I walked over to school 
And met my class mates 
They were lovely 
And gave me big hugs 
I then spoke to my tutor 
And she said it was fine to take some time off 
She also said she would make an appointment with the school counsellor for me 
I also contacted Mary 
And have an appointment with her next week 
I will also see my doctor 
And my psychiatrist 
I really want to build myself up over the next few days 
And get my strength back 
So I can be fighting fit when I return next week
I just need some me time 
I threw myself in to this course at full speed 
Now it's starting to catch up on me
And I am flagging 

Over the next few days 
I'm going to rest 
Lots of Honey and Lea time 
I also have some work to do at home so I will try to keep up with everyone else 
Of course now I am wondering if I did the right thing taking time off 
And I feel like did I do the right thing?
But I have to trust my gut 
And go with that 
I'm just a bit worried about falling behind  
And missing out 
But look
I have made the decision now 
So I just have to go with it
And trust that I know me best 
And know when I need to slow down 
And cool the jets
I'm also hoping to catch up on you blogs 
And get up to date with what's happening with y'all 
And as for me?
I guess I need to sort a few things out 
Especially how open I am about my issues
As after writing about them on FB
I felt really exposed and vulnerable 
I asked people what they thought about writing such things on such an open forum 
I got a mixed response 
Some said it was a brave thing to do 
Some said it could put me in a very vulnerable position
I am undecided 
But I will give it a rest for a few days
Just to breathe 
And to sort my head out 
That's me 
I'm not perfect 
I never professed to be 
I am flawed 
I have a mind that works faster than I can process the information
I have a wild imagination
Some might call that paranoia 
I've been known to read too much in to things 
And over think until my brain hurts

Edit: I am now back home 
I've been here an hour 
And already I'm bored silly
Now I'm regretting saying I'll take some time off 
And am thinking about going in to tomorrow and Friday 
And taking Monday and Tuesday of for appointments
If I seem a bit all over the place 
It's because I am
I'm restless 
Where ever I am 
I want to be somewhere else 
I don't know 
I guess I will play it by ear
Watch this space 
I will keep you updated....

Saturday, 19 November 2016

Bumpy week

This week has been bumpy to say the least
I was off Monday and Tuesday with severe bouts of diarrhoea
I went in Wednesday 
And yesterday 
But I had to get off the horse to run to the bathroom
So I really didn't get to ride which was disappointing 
So instead 
I groomed 
And helped out in the yard
Today I am off again
As I have a doctors appointment 
So I'm hoping to get to the bottom of this 
Ha! Pardon the pun!
But seriously 
I do need to get this under control 
I've had diarrhoea since I started the course 
Which is five weeks now 
I was managing it 
But it's got to the point where I'm afraid to do anything 
In case I need the loo
As I said in my last post
I really think it's anxiety 
I was talking with my sisters partner last night 
And she was asking why I am anxious 
After some thought 
I realised that it was because I feel I'm not good enough 
That I am stupid 
And am not able for this course 
I worry about everything 
About falling behind 
Being asked questions and not knowing the answers 
About how I'm doing socially 
Wondering what my weights doing 
Struggling to eat at breaks 
So really and truly there is a lot going on
It's no wonder my body is taking a hit 
And the thing is 
It's a catch 22 situation 
If I go in to my course 
I feel anxious and have diarrhoea 
If I don't go in 
I don't feel anxious 
And I don't have it 
So when I do stay at home 
I feel I should have gone in
But if I go in
I wish I stayed at home
What to do ....
I'm not sure what my doctor is going to do 
But I hope there is a solution that doesn't involve taking a pill
I was wondering if any of you have experience this 
And how did you deal with it?
It's starting to get me down 
And I know the more time I miss 
The more I fall behind 
And the harder it will be to get back in to the swing of things 
I digress 

In other news 
Mam is away for two weeks 
So am trying to keep the house running in some sort of order 
The weather is so bad that I'm not getting out with the dogs as much 
But they come for spins in the car and seem to be happy enough with that 
My Dad is staying with us for a while 
He has improved a bit 
Which is great 
Food wise I'm doing ok
Struggling a bit to eat in school
But I'm eating a dinner in the evenings 
I'm not entirely sure 
But I don't think I've lost weight 
If I have it's not much 
Mood is good 
I feel positive 
Despite the issues I'm having 
But I'm optimistic that there is a solution 
So if you have any suggestions 
I'd love to read them.....

Tuesday, 15 November 2016


I'm off school today
And was off yesterday too
Since I started my course four weeks ago
I've been experiencing severe bouts of diarrhoea in the mornings
At first I put it down to my change in routine 
And adjusting to my course 
But recently 
It's been getting worse 
I get like clockwork every morning 
But not for the rest of the day
On Sunday night 
I woke up and threw up a few times
So just to be sure 
I took yesterday off 
I got up this morning 
Planning to go in 
But I had too pretty bad bouts in quick succession 
So I made an executive decision
And decided to stay at home 
I did speak to my doctor last week
And he said to keep an eye on it
And notice when I am getting it
And when I don't 
Over the weekend 
I didn't have any diarrhoea at all
But come Monday morning 
It came back 
I'm starting to think that it might be nerves or anxiety 
I don't actually feel stressed 
But I guess it could be bubbling away under the surface 
Starting this course was a huge step 
And I think it's perfectly natural to feel nerves and anticipation
But I thought four weeks in I would feel a bit more settled 
Of course 
In saying that 
I am still adjusting 
And finding my feet 
But I definitely believe that emotional stresses can cause physical reactions 
I rang my doctor today 
And the receptionist told me that I couldn't be seen 
She said I could go in only if it was an emergency 
I told her I needed a cert for school
But she said that wasn't an emergency 
So I'll have to wait until Friday to get a sick cert 
It's nice to have a couple of days off 
But I would much rather be in school 
As I don't want to miss out 
Because I am struggling to keep up as it is 

Apart from that 
I am doing welll
I feel good 
I feel healthy and strong 
Not weak or delicate like I used to
I'm loving my course 
Two new girls started this week
But I haven't met them yet
Which is more anxiety meeting new people 
The girls on my course have been just lovely 
Texting me to check on me
And just being good friends 
I am going to go in to tomorrow regardless 
Because I know the longer I leave it 
The harder it will be to get back in to a routine 

Just a quick post today 
Thanks for reading 
And see you on the next post....

Friday, 11 November 2016

Facebooking from the edge....

I have only recently started using Facebook
I was blissfully ignorant to it for a long time 
I avoided it for a few reasons 
The number one being that I had no life 
And it made me feel really lonely and envious of all the people who seemed to have these fantastic lives
If I had a FB account this time last year
All I would be posting is pictures of mountains of food, toilets and vomit 
And let's face it
That is nothing to brag about 
I had nothing positive to report at all
I simply couldn't handle seeing images and videos of cruelty to animals 
These images stayed lodged in my brain
And I literally couldn't go on knowing about the atrocities that we as humans do to animals 
It's a bit of a tug of war for me
I don't want to know these things 
Yet at the same time I want to be aware of what is going on
Take this morning for example 
I scrolled through my news feed 
And stumbled upon an article about animals being skinned alive in India and China 
To make out leather goods 
I broke down after reading the article 
I utterly despaired 
And did not want to be part of the human race if this is what we do to creatures that show nothing but loyalty and unconditional love 
I just don't understand it 
I really don't 
After the tears subside 
The anger sets in
And the absolute need to do something about 
I signed a petition 
I shared it on Facebook
And wrote a post about my feelings 
But it doesn't feel like enough 
I've been thinking about becoming vegetarian for a while now 
And now knowing where most of our leather comes from 
I'm even considering vegan ism 
The only thing is 
That I don't know the first thing about it 
I don't know how to cook vegan food 
I'm not even sure which foods are vegan
I just want to do something 
Even if it's in my own small way 
After this 
I went in to the kitchen 
And sat on the floor with Honey and Lea
I hugged them tightly 
And thanked my lucky stars that I am able to give two dogs a good and loving home 
I could write for days about this 
But I'll stop here as I just have no more tears 

In other news
Today is Friday 
And I usually have a half day today 
But today I am off sick with some sort of bug 
I've had diarrhoea for about two weeks now 
And I just feel so tired and weak
It's nice to have a day off though 
Even if I don't feel all that well
So I now have a month done of my course 
Some things are getting easier 
But I must admit
I do struggle to retain information
Thank you 12 years of drug abuse
For my brain like a sieve 
For low self esteem and confidence 
For an inherent inability to like myself 
Or to believe in myself 
For putting me through hell
And not forgetting anorexia and bulimia 
For my weak body 
A malfunctioning body
And for any lack of life skills 
Oh yes
They have treated me well
So because of all this 
More often than not 
I feel like the class dunce 
I always seem to be asked the question I don't know the answer to 
And never the one I do know the answer to
Yesterday I walked away from my stable and left the door open!
Our tutor shouted at me from across the yard 
And I felt so embarrassed 
I'll never make that mistake again 
That's for sure
I struggle with the equipment 
I forget the names of things 
During our riding lesson
Our tutor had us take our feet out of our stirrups 
Asked us questions 
And we could only get our stirrups back when when answered our question correctly 
I had to do two laps of the arena like this 
And boy did I feel stupid 
On a positive note 
I am now cantering 
And not by accident 
Yesterday morning I was on a beautiful dun mare called Bambino
What a beauty 
I think she has been my favourite so far 
She was lovely and forward to ride 
Responded with little effort from me
Just a joy to ride
I was surprised when our tutor told me to canter 
As if had no instruction
It was just out of the blue 'Canter at the next corner'
I kicked on Bambi
Sat in to the saddle 
Leg behind the girth
And the sprang in to a canter 
Such a rush 
A definite improvement on my day

I only have a couple of photos this week
Below is Arnie having a rest 
And me chillin' with Bambi.....