Sunday, 1 October 2017

October

Don't you just love Autumn?
I think it's my favourite of all the seasons
Today is the first of October
The leaves are falling 
The colours are beautiful
It's cold enough to wrap up in warm jumpers and scarves
Love it all!
September was a month of highs and lows
I finished work
I celebrated my birthday
Then
On the 17th
I travelled three hours away to Westport for a little holiday 
I've been talking about this holiday for quite some time
It's a package where you stay three nights in the hotel
And the manager of the hotel also owns stables so you can do a mountain trek one day
And a beach trek the next day
I brought my parents with me
And treated them
It felt so good to be able to pay for them
And it felt even better to organise my very own holiday 
And do exactly what I want to do
I've gone on holidays in the past 
But they were other people's holidays that I tagged along 
This holiday was all me!

We arrived Sunday afternoon
Checked in 
I handed over the guts of a grand in cash
That I worked hard all summer to save
I actually felt like a proper adult paying that bill
And to treat my parents was just great
We had two rooms 
Myself and Mam in one
And Dad in another
We settled in 
Then headed up for dinner
We actually stayed in this same hotel about ten years ago
At Christmas time
I was strung out at the time 
And didn't brings enough drugs or methadone with me 
And promptly went in to a severe withdrawal 
I'll never forget that night 
I thought I was going to die
Anyway 
Here I am ten years later 
Ten years older and wiser 
A long way away from that girl 
Michael 
The man who owns the stables 
Texted me to tell me he would pick me up the next morning 
And we would do the mountain trek first 
I woke up the next morning 
Full of excitement and nerves
I forced down a breakfast
Grabbed my hat 
And went to wait for Michael
He soon arrived 
And we headed out to the stables 
First impressions were not good
As Micheal was shouting at all the staff
And there was a very tense atmosphere 
I actually went outside and rang Mam 
I wasn't sure if I even wanted to continue 
As the whole place felt very hostile 
Anyway
I decided to give it a second shot 
I was shown what horse I was riding 
A massive boy called Pepper 
I mean he was enormous!
I was introduced to my guide Atulla 
Who was from Hungary 
And two others called Zena and Cynthia
Atulla brought me out to the outdoor arena 
And went over the trek etc
I decided I didn't want to canter that day
I said I would wait until the beach trek
A rare moment of restraint for me

So
We all saddles up and headed out
We were going to the foothills of a mountain called Croagh Patrick 
Which people climb in pilgrimage 
It was quite a long trek at three hours in all
It was just beautiful
The day was lovely 
Weather was great
We did a lot of trotting and walking 
A lot of chatting 
And of course lots of photos
Atulla was quite the character 
And kept us all entertained 
The trek up the mountain was quite precarious at times 
Drops either side
Rocky ground
But I thoroughly enjoyed it
We got back to the stables 
And Atulla gave me a lift back to the hotel
I was so glad that I didn't pull out 
I was so glad persevered
It was well worth it

I got back to the hotel 
Tired but happy 
I had a shower 
Changed my clothes 
And headed down to the harbour with Mam
I was really on a high 
And couldn't contain myself
That evening we had dinner 
And then went for a couple of drinks 
And to listen to the music 
I swear I was the youngest person there by about three decades
I was wrecked 
So went to bed early enough 

The next morning 
I was sore but not too bad 
Today were going to do the beach trek
And there was another lady coming with us
While I waited for Michael to pick me up 
I tried to figure out who she was 
Michael arrived 
And I met the lady called Jo
She was bright and bubbly 
And I liked her immediately 
We headed out to the beach 
Where Atulla was waiting with the horses
Who had been transported from the stables in a big horse box
Jo was riding Pepper today
Today I was riding a little cob called Charlie 
But what he lacked in size 
He made up for in personality 
He was full of character
I hopped up on a rock 
And on to his back
Straight away I could feel how keen he was to get going 
We arranged ourselves in to a line and headed out
Atulla was riding Sylvester
And also riding with us was Inaja
Who was riding Imp
The beach was vast and completely deserted
Again we were lucky with the weather 
From the start 
The craic was mighty
Jo was full of the joys 
And Atulla also kept us all entertained with jokes and taking the piss out of us 
But I must also say
When he needed to be serious
He most definitely was
He had the balance of fun and safety just right
We trotted the length of the beach 
Went through the water 
Up on the dunes 
On the rocks 
Then we came to a sort of circular area of beach 
And Atulla asked us if we wanted to canter
I did 
But Atulla said he would do it with me
So we cantered together around the circle 
Charlie was a total pocket rocket
God bless him he could move
Jo tried too
But it didn't quite work out for her
The weather was starting to turn 
So we began to head back 
We had to wade through the water again 
And the tide has come in
So because Charlie was so small
I was up to my knees in sea water 
Which the rest of them thought was hilarious 
I was soaked and the water was feckin' freezing 
But it was all part of the fun
We made it back to the trailer
Dismounted 
Led the horses back in 
Then we all piled in to the cab 
And headed back to the hotel
The trailer was ancient 
But we had the best of fun on the way back 
Chatting about the trek
If it was even possible 
It was better than the mountain trek
Our little holiday was over all too soon
But I thoroughly enjoyed it
And it gave me a fire in my belly to do more and more riding 
I left with precious memories 
And some beautiful photos
Also the knowledge that I made this happen 
It couldn't have gone better 

I have a lot more to write
But I think I will leave it there for today 
And try and post some photos to go with this post...
    

Saturday, 16 September 2017

Autumn update

And so it is September
Where did the summer go?
I finished up work last Thursday 
So am a free little bird again 
I thoroughly enjoyed work this year
Once I got in to it
And got over my anxiety
I relaxed 
And just went with the flow
No panic
No stress
No worrying and questioning myself 
Not taking myself too seriously 
And just enjoying it
It's a lovely place to work
I made new friends 
My manager is a very fair and sound person 
And there is a very friendly and informal atmosphere 
My manger asked me if I was willing to do some work in the residential home for the elderly 
So of course I said yes 
It will most likely be covering people's holidays etc
But it's a start 
And a chance to get to know the residents and staff
So that's some good news
I finished work on Thursday 
Which was also my birthday
A double celebration 
For my birthday 
Myself Mam and Fintan went for lunch 
And on Saturday my sister brought me for lunch 
I got some lovely gifts
A parka jacket
Riding boots 
A t-shirt
I was well and truly spoiled 
I know a lot of people don't like birthdays 
But I love them
Maybe because you are made a fuss of in my house
Finishing up work was bitter sweet
It's nice to have more time 
To spend with my dogs and Coco
But I do miss it
I miss the people
The buzz of service 
Meeting new people
Our holiday centre is a very special place
It's run by a charity called St. Vincent de Paul
And it arranges holidays for those who ordinarily wouldn't be able to afford a holiday
It's nice to think we are helping people 
And we do our best to make their holiday a memorable one 
Next year I plan to work full time 
Which will be a challenge 
But one I really want to go for 
I find working part time 
I wasn't as clued in as I was when working full time
Like everything 
There are advantages and disadvantages 

I didn't get to visit Coco as much this summer
But now the season is over 
I am back to seeing him as often as his can
He is doing well
There are sheep in his field now 
And himself and Lea have great fun chasing them around the field
He saw the farrier this week
And was as good as gold
Our farrier offered to take Coco for a week
To begin breaking him in
This is fantastic news! 
And I am so grateful to the farrier
To think that I could ride Coco at some point in the future?
That right there is amazing
I can't wait!
I am still riding a couple of times a week
And slowly but surely improving
I'm learning all the time
The horses are great teachers 
Star my buddy is such a handsome boy

In other news 
I am heading away on a little trip tomorrow 
I am treating the parental unit to a three night break away in a hotel
I am going on a riding trek
And the 'rents are going to chill out
I'm very excited for the holiday
And I'm delighted to be able to treat my parents 
And after a summer of working hard 
It's a nice way to finish it off
I can't lie
I'm a bit nervous to ride a new horse 
But I will do my best 
And that's all I can do

Healthy wise 
Mentally I am doing just fine 
I'm finally in a place where I am content just to be me 
I don't want her bum
Her boobs
Her legs 
I am happy enough with my own thank you very much 
My body has changed a lot 
But I'm getting used to it
I feel a long way away from my ED
It's not something I think about 
It's not something that takes up space in my life or my head
I am no longer Ruby the anorectic
Or even Ruby in recovery 
I am just Ruby
And that is enough 
Up until quite recently 
When I met new people 
I felt compelled to tell them my history
Almost to explain why I am the way I am
To let people know what nice been through 
Now 
I don't feel like that at all 
I don't make a point of telling people 
If it comes up fair enough 
But I don't deliberately bring it up
Progress friends..

So
That's it for another month
I hope y'all doing ok
Take care and stay well
See you on the next post...

Friday, 1 September 2017

September Update

I can quite believe that the summer is over
I finish up work next week
But my manager asked me if I was interested in doing cover for employees going on holiday 
I said I would as I think it's a good thing to get my foot in the door there
I think back to May
When I was just starting 
I honestly thought I wouldn't get through it
I thought my anxiety and fear would get the better of me
But four months later 
Here I am finishing up
And feeling so good that I stuck it out 
And got through it 
And do you know what?
I thoroughly enjoyed it
I made some new friends 
Got to meet the most amazing people 
And help them enjoy a much needed break away
There have been some challenges over the last few months 
Difficult guests 
Demanding people  
The morning the fuse blew in the kitchen 
But overall 
I am so glad that I did it 
It has given my  confidence and self esteem a much needed boost
I met all kinds of people this year 
Old people 
Tiny kiddies 
Teenagers with autism 
Adults with brain injuries 
Lovely people 
I also made over €100 in tips this week
Which is always nice
We had our staff night out a couple of weeks ago 
The girls went for dinner 
Which was just lovely 
And after met  up with the lads in the pub
Because of the horrendous hangover I had last year 
I decided just to have a couple of drinks this year
So I had three and headed home like a sensible girl
Two days later I was in work
And one of the chefs came in with a busted up nose and two blacks eyes
He had jumped in to stop a fight 
And got a right box on the nose
The other chef who started the fight ran off and left him
I am so glad that I went home early and missed all the drama
Theses days all I want is a quiet life

In other news
I am still horse riding 
About twice a week
Which I just love 
Riding is great for the head
Especially for a thinker and analyser like me
I had a lesson yesterday
And was on a new horse called Katie
Katie was much more forward and quicker than my usual Willow
And because of this I was a bit nervous
It was a tough lesson
But really enjoyed it
Look
I know I'll never compete or anything like it 
But I just want to be the best I can be
I want to be able to ride 
To canter
To feel an affinity with the animal
I had become very comfortable with Willow
So it was good to change it up
My instructor did ask me during the lesson if I wanted to swap back to Willow
But the stubbornness in me didn't want to
I love a challenge
And by the end of the hour I was getting better

ED wise 
Things are going well
I eat food 
I keep said food down
I rarely purge
I don't restrict or diet
I don't weigh or measure my self worth in pounds and ounces 
I don't  want to be underweight 
I don't want to starve myself 
I don't binge 
I'm not afraid of food anymore 
I even enjoy it 
Don't get me wrong 
Everything is not perfect 
But they are hundred time better than they were 
Amen to that!!
My body image has improved a lot
I am shapely 
I have curves 
Boobs galore
And a butt you could eat your dinner off
I wouldn't go so far as to say I love it
But it's growing on me 
Literally!!
Life has improved so much over the last 18 months
I am content 
I have moments of immense happiness 
I also have moments of utter despair 
But they balance each other out
Don't get me wrong 
Life is not perfect 
But it's the best it's ever been
When I think about where I have come from
I'm not doing too bad at all

That was just a quick update 
Will write again soon
Take care out there... x

Friday, 4 August 2017

August Update

And so we have reached August
It's hard to believe that work will be finishing up in a few short weeks
The summer flew by
I'm looking forward to the send of the summer
Work quietens down
The town gets back to normal
The town I work in is a holiday sea-side town
So that population explodes during the summer 
And all the hotels and other businesses make hay while the sun shines
The places I work in is a charity run holiday centre 
It provides much needed holidays for those who ordinarily wouldn't be able to afford one
We get a mixture of people
Families
Groups
Children
Seniors 
Disabled people 
Sick people 
People usually arrived on a Friday afternoon
And depart the following Thursday
We are right on the main road so we are in the think of things
Which can be both a good thing and a bad thing
Our rooms are bright and spacious 
And we have live music at the weekend 
Overall the people who stay with us are lovely 
My managers motto for the house is 'Friendliness, cleaniless and good food'
This week my week starts on a Saturday 
And I work through to Wednesday
I'm doing some evening shifts this week
Which means I'll be working in the bar
I'm a bit anxious 
But I'm sure I'll be fine 
My confidence has definitely improved since I started working 
Most of the time I fake it
But that works too
As long as I look like I know what I'm doing that's half the battle
Also my working means I get to go on a holiday this September 
I've booked a hotel in Westport for three nights with my Mam
She is going to chill out
And I'm going horse riding which I'm so looking forward to
I'm treating my Mam so I'm delighted about that
We actually stayed in this hotel about ten years ago over Christmas
I was strung out at the time
And on the last night I ran out of drugs 
So I was in withdrawal 
It was horrific
I'll never forget it
The longest night of my life

Also 
Because I am earning money 
I get to go horse riding more often
Which is brilliant 
I would do it every single day if I could 
But I can only go as much as my wallet allows 
I still call to Coco too
He is now sharing his field with some sheep
I'm looking forward to finishing up work
So I can call to him more often
I feel bad that I'm only getting over a couple of times a week at the moment 
But I am doing my best to look after him
I had a great riding lesson yesterday 
Last week
My trainer told me that I was slightly tipping forward in my canter 
She took a video of me 
And I could clearly see it
So this week I really tried my hardest to address this 
I looked up and out instead of down 
I pushed my heels down 
Shoulders back 
Boobs out
She said there was a marked improvement this week which I was delighted to hear
Look
I know I'll never really do a whole lot with my riding
I don't want to compete 
I'm not training for an event 
I just want to ride for my own enjoyment 
I want to be able to walk, trot and canter 
To gallop on a beach 
To wade in the ocean
Be able to looo after and care for a horse
Because I love it
It makes me happy 
It fills the hole in my soul better than any pill or potion

We have our staff do on the 17th
We are going for a meal
And then for a few drinks 
I booked a hair appointment for the morning 
And am getting my makeup done in the afternoon
I am half dreading it
Half looking forward to it
It will be nice to get dressed up 
All suited and booted 
I am beyond shite at applying make up 
So I am getting a professional to do it 
I can't wait to see what I look like 
I am thinking a smokey eye with a flick of eye liner 
But as I said 
Make up is alien to me
The next questions is whether to have a drink or not 
I drank last year 
And didn't get home until 6am
This year I don't plan on doing that 
So I might have a couple of drinks 
But that is it

I think that's about it for now
Thank you for reading
Stay well
And keep smiling...

Thursday, 20 July 2017

July Update

Two months of work done now
About seven weeks to go
Over the last couple of weeks 
I've been struggling quite a lot 
Even though I try my best at work
I still feel like other people do it better than me
They seek to cope better
Be more confident 
More efficient 
And generally not capable than me
My bestie tells me if I hear nothing, then nothing is wrong
Which I guess is true 
But I am constantly looking for reassurance that I am doing ok
I'm nearly 36 years old
And I feel like a little girl that needs her Mommy to tell her that everything will be ok
I'm a bit of an odd ball 
And I'm sure people think I'm a bit strange 
Aa I find it hard to mix in groups 
I am fine one on one 
But in a group I have a social handicap 
That's me though 
It takes me a while to become comfortable with people 
Yet again I find myself wondering if people like me 
And wanting them to like me
And probably trying too hard to be liked and accepted 
It shouldn't matter though 
I'm there to do a job
It's not a popularity contest 
It really shouldn't matter what people think of me
At all
I know I am trying my best at work
And that's all that matters
I find myself in this situation a lot
When I was doing my course 
I was convinced the others didn't like me 
But even after I left 
They still keep in contact 
So I was very wrong about that one!

Anyway 
In other news 
My car has been giving me huge problems 
I was driving in to the garage yesterday 
When a warning noise started 
And then smoke started coming out
I stopper immediately and got out 
But my car was on a narrow road 
So I needed to get it off the road 
My Mam was there so at least I had a lift 
Four very kind men stopped and helped us pushed the car off the road
The garage recovered my car in the afternoon
And it wasn't good news 
The clutch in it is bangjaxed
It will cost €800 to fix
I do not have that kind of money to hand 
So I need to make a decision about whether to get the work done 
Or to change my car for a better one 
It's stressful
As I need a car 
For work
To see Coco 
I need it for my freedom and independence 
So I guess I will have to do something

I was listening to something on the radio this week
About the grown up children of alcoholic or addicted parents 
How they are more likely to be anxious and insecure 
How their foundation has been rocky and so they carry that in to their adult life
It was very interesting and I could relate to a lot of it 
Myself and my sisters all suffer with addiction and mental health issues
We struggle with feeling not good enough
And generally find life tough
I look at some of the girls I work with 
Who are younger than me 
But seem so much more together than me
I struggle just to get to the starting block
So it seems everyone is running way ahead of me
Of course my life has not been straight forward 
And I have dealt with an awful lot 
I am happy just to be alive 
Anything else is a bonus
I am grateful to be where I am 
And things could be a whole lot worse 

I'm still horse riding and loving it
I go 2-3 times a week
And it's is just heaven 
Sitting in a horse 
Galloping down a beach
Doing little jumps 
It makes all the tough days worthwhile 
On Saturday 
Myself and a friend did a beach trek
 A two hour trek
I was riding a big fella called Bouncer 
Fionnuala was on Tom
Kate was our leader on Skippy
And there was a girl at the back riding Laura 
We walked down to the beach 
Then we spilt up
Fionnuala and Laura went to walk the sand dunes 
And myself and Kate went down to the main beach for a canter 
I swear to God Bouncer shot off like a rocket 
Abc was running full pelt down the length of the beach
It was both terrifying and thrilling in equal measure but I thoroughly enjoyed it
After that 
We went back up to meet the others 
And walked back to the centre through the fields
Myself and Fionnuala dismounted our horses 
And were walking around like John Wayne 
The next day I was in pain 
But it was a good pain 
An almost enjoyable pain

So I think that is all my news
I am thinking of re enrolling in the horsemanship course 
I feel a bit more ready now
And ultimately this is what I want to be doing 
But first things first 
I'm just concentrating on getting through work 
And hopefully I will be back on the road soon

That's your July update sorted 
Thanks for reading 
And for being there..