Thursday, 20 November 2014

The Weighting Game

I haven't weighed myself in a long time
Mary was the one who used to weigh me
But of course she is no longer around
So that task has been left up to me
The last time I weighed myself was in my uncle's house some weeks ago
I had a bit of a meltdown
As I saw a number I have never seen in my entire life
After that I stopped weighing
Just for my own peace of mind
And mental health
I decided no good could come of it
And I didn't need that extra stress in my life

But not weighing does not mean that I am not curious
I compare myself to my Mother and my sister
I know what they weigh
So if I try on their clothes
I have an idea what I am in comparison to them
They are both very slim
My Mother especially is like a tiny little bird
It's hard to imagine that I used to be a lot smaller than her
I look at her  now and think she is so small and petite
My sister is also tiny
And they tell me that I have the same frame as them
I'm not sure though

So last last night
I got it in to my head that I wanted to know my weight
I said it to my sister
She said not to
That it was a bad idea
And it didn't matter anyway
I wish I could be like that
And not give a flying f**k what I weighed
I wish it didn't matter
But it does
It still does

After the conversation with my sister
I decided not to weigh
But then
When I went down to my room to change in to my pyjamas
On impulse I pulled out the scale and stood on it
Before I could change my mind
I had a number in mind
And if I was over that
I just didn't know how I was going to handle it
But in actual fact
I was about 3kilos lighter than I thought I was
So I don't know if I've lost weight
Or if the last scales I stood on was way off
Either way
I am not ecstatic
But I am not disgusted either
I can handle it
Just about

As you know
I rarely disclose my weight
I don't really see the point
It shouldn't matter
And it doesn't
I will say that I my BMI is well within the healthy range
And that's all that matters

Regaining this weight has been a rollercoaster of emotions
I swing between absolutely hating my body
To being somewhere near accepting it
My perspective can change in a split second
I remember every comment anyone has ever made about my appearance
Even as a child
Even before I was eating disordered
I filed all these comments in the back of my head
And used them when needed to insult myself
And beat myself up
Some of my favourites are

'Oh you've filled out'

'You're getting a little chubby'

I could go on and on
But I won't

I was wondering about you
Do you weigh yourself?
Or do you leave well alone?

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Honey and Lea

Honey and Lea went missing yesterday evening
I came in to the kitchen
And they were no where to be seen
So I followed the clues
The door to the hall was open
I walked down to the hall
And in to my bedroom
Where I knew they had been at some point
As the contents of my bin were on the ground
And the throw on my bed was all messy
But no sign of any dogs

I tried upstairs
Where my sister sleeps
And there I found them
Bold as brass
Lying in my sisters bed
Just look at this last photo for guilty heads

Saw this in town today

New jacket and leggings

Tuesday, 18 November 2014


We're nearing the end of the year now
Another year that has gone by so very fast
It's been an eventful year for me
To say the least
A lot has happened
I started the year off in treatment
My weight was very low
Confidence and self esteem were in the toilet
I was losing hope
And belief
And the will to live
I've been in ED treatment about 6 times
And it has never worked for me
In fact I actually lost weight this time
And continued to binge and purge
So there really was no point in me being there
I was discharged in February for failing to gain weight
I despaired
I did not know what was going to become of me
For the first time in my life
I was afraid

Things continued to slide when I came home
I lost more weight
My binging and purging was off the chart
And the scary thing was that I couldn't stop
I was spinning out of control
And I felt powerless over my ED

I was still seeing Mary at this point
She was like a port in a storm for me
A clear headed
Logical person that could help me make sense of things
In April I took what I call 'a half hearted over dose'
I took all my meds
And hoped that I wouldn't wake up
But I did
And I was so sorry that I did
I felt like I couldn't hold on for much longer
I didn't tell anyone about the overdose at first
I didn't want to worry people
And I was afraid that my meds would be taken away
If they thought I was at risk

About 10 days later
I began to get afraid that I was going to do it again
I knew that I needed help
I desperately needed help
I told Mary that week
She sprang in to action immediately
I left the room as the rang my psychiatrist
She then told me that I had two options
I could present at the local psychiatric hospital
And admit myself
Or I could wait until the next day
And see my psychiatrist
I really didn't want to go in to hospital
So I chose the latter
And made an appointment for the following day
Mary asked me to tell my Mother what was happening
And also asked me if I could guarantee my safety until the next day
I said I could

After I stopped crying
And had a long chat with Mary
I headed home
I had such an urge to OD again
Such a craving for oblivion
I just couldn't handle reality
The noise in my head
The feeling that my skin was crawling
I couldn't stand feeling these feeling
And the negative and intrusive thoughts that were on repeat in my head
I wanted to keep my promise to Mary
But I did over use my meds
So I could sleep
And forget about all this for a while

While I was in with Mary
I had tang my Mum to tell her what was happening
She was at work
And came home immediately
I tearfully explained the situation
That I was in the process of hitting my umpteenth rock bottom
It was relief
A relief to let people know how bad things were
I knew that I needed help

The next morning
My Mother and I went to meet with my psychiatrist
I don't remember very much about the conversation
I was so numb
And wrecked from crying so much
I do remember he was kind
He listened
And tried to let me see that there was hope
I wasn't convinced

The other thing he did was he increased my meds
And started me on 40mgs of Prozac
He told me that Prozac tended to work very well on people with extreme bulimia
I was more that willing to give it a try
I would have tried anything at this point
If he had told me that standing on my head for an hour an day would help
I would have gladly done it
I went home and felt much better
At least people knew now
And they could support me

It was around this time that I began to gain weight
I can clearly remember the first time I noticed it
I was in the shower
Washing myself
And all of a sudden
I felt like there was more of me
Especially around my stomach area
I went to my room and pulled out my scales
I had gained 3 kilos
Cue panic and distress
I sat my my bed with my head in my hands
I just couldn't handle
I was disgusted with myself
And angry
It was unbearable

After a couple of weeks
I felt like the Prozac was starting to kick in
My mood lifted
And my anxiety improved
But the most noticeable difference was that the binging and purging began to ease up
I had been purging 10 -20 times a day
And slowly but surely that number began to decrease
It was a freakin' revelation
I couldn't quite believe it
The freedom was  amazing
I began to feel better in myself
An even though I was still gaining weight
The positives were outweighing the negatives
If weight gain was the price of peace of mind
Then I was more than willing to pay it

Summer came
And my sister came home from Australia
Having her here has helped me massively
We get on great
And we have the same juvenile sense of humour
And laughing has proved to be vital medicine for me
Better than any pill

In August I went to London for two weeks
While there
On the 11th
I smoked my last cigarette
14 weeks later
I haven't touched them since
This is massive for me
I was a dedicated and passionate smoker
I loved them
I was a 30 a day girl
And spent 100 Euro a week on them
Now I have extra money
My health has greatly improved
My skin is clear
My sense of taste of smell is better
I'm fitter
And generally feeling better in myself
I never thought I would see the day when I gave up
But I did
I really did

As regards my weight
I have stopped weighing myself
I refuse to measure my worth in pounds and ounces
I won't do it
Now I go by how my clothes
And the fir ok so I think my weight has settled down

Everything is not perfect
I haven't had a purge free day yet
But things have drastically improved for me
And for my family
They don't have to worry now
Worry that I'm going to fall in to bad health
Or even die
They can relax a little
And they have told me that they are proud of me
Which is so amazing to hear

Now I am in recovery
I am recovering
After 14 years of addiction and disordered eating
I am getting better
My physical health
My mental health
My outlook
My perspective
M y hope
And belief
Have all improved so much
Now I know that I have a second chance at life
A chance to live the life I always wanted
I am proof that things can and do turn around
No matter how low you go
No matter how rock bottoms you hit
No matter if you have totally given up
Stopped hoping
Stopped believing
There is a way out
There is always a way out
There is help
There are people who will believe in you until you can
There is life after addiction and EDs
I know that now

This post is for you
If you are struggling today
If you are feeling that you can't go on
And you want to disappear
If you feel hopeless
And helpless
If you are in the midst of addiction
Or held captive by your ED
If you feel beaten up by life
If you are over weight of under weight
Or somewhere in between
If you are in recovery
Or thinking about it
If you want to live
This post is for you

Today I feel good
After a few tough days
I feel have come out the other side
This is all part and parcel of recovery
Part of life
I have hope
I have belief
And I have faith
That things will be ok
I will be ok
I will be free
Of this illness
Of the demons in head
Of anorexia and bulimia and addiction
I feel strong
The strongest I have ever felt in my life
I can do this
You can do this
I promise you that

Monday, 17 November 2014


Doctor day today
The first thing he said to me when I sat down was
'I printed this off for you'
And handed me a piece of paper
He explained that it was a humorous piece written by a doctor about consultancy
I was really surprised and touched that he had thought of me
I thanked him
And folded the piece of paper and put it in my pocket
He asked me how I am doing
I admitted that it had been a tough week
I've been thinking about drugs a lot
How nice it would be to experience total oblivion for a while
What a relief it would be to escape
Just for a few hours
I am even dreaming about using
At first I didn't know why I was craving so much
But then I realized that it might be something to do with my choice of tv shows
Breaking Bad
Love/Hate (An Irish show about gangland culture)
And most recently
Orange is the new black
My doctor said it was no wonder why I was craving

Sometimes the thought that I can never use or drink again really depresses me
I still sometimes fantasize that I can drink or use recreationally
But in reality I know that is impossible
I know that my life was utter chaos when I was using
And there are no half measures with me
It's all or nothing
My doctor told me that I should start watching Enid Blyton shows

It's funny
My doctor and I don't really talk about medical issues any more
And my session with him is getting longer and longer
I guess we have a lot on common
We watch the same tv shows
And we both swim
So there is always lots to talk about
He knows me very well by this stage
I've seen him every week for the last 10 years
But sometimes it can be a bit uncomfortable
As the lines between patient and doctor have been blurred
So I'm not quite sure where the boundary is any more
Don't get my wrong
I think very highly of my doctor
He has been an amazing help to me
I just prefer it when there are clear boundaries
You know?

I was in with my doctor for about half an hour
Then I headed to the chemist to pick up my script
When I had taken my meds
I went for a swim
The first swim I've had in a week
Because I had my period
It was a very enjoyable swim
I did 160 lengths
And felt great after it

After my swim
I went to meet my OT(Occupational therapist)
It's been a while since I've seen her
So we met for an early lunch in one of the cafes
She gave me a big hug when she saw me
She is so sweer
We settled at a table
I ordered tea and brown toast
She ordered hot chocolate and white toast
We had a great chat
And it was great to be able to give her good news for a change
We chatted non stop for a full hour
It was so lovely to catch up
She told me that she will be seeing Mary
And will tell her how I am doing

I have to admit though
The last few days have been tough
I am struggling to accept my new body
And my eating has suffered because of it
As you know
I tend to swing between anorexia and bulimia
It can change it a matter of days
If bulimia is loud and brash and in your face
Then anorexia is cold and silent and aloof
She has been around a lot more than bulimia recently
I've been avoiding eating
And feeling very guilty when I do eat
It's hard for me to find a balance
Somewhere in between too much and not enough

I was worried though
Because I was starting to enjoy the feeling of having no food in my stomach
The natural high I get from lack of nourishment
I can't help thinking that I am over weight
I am convinced of it
There is too much of me
And it is very uncomfortable
I just want to feel ok in my skin
I want to accept and like my body
And I don't know if I can at this weight
I keep thinking
If I just lost X pounds
Then I would be happy
Then I could feel content with my size and shape
But of course I know that thinking like that is a slippery slope
And no good can come of it

So what do I do?
Well I need to try and get back on track
And out of this restricting mode that I am in
I need to remember how bad things were when I was unwell
How desperate I felt
How anxious and depressed I was
I need to keep living my life despite my urge to disappear
I need to swim
And walk my dogs
And write
And read
I need to feed myself with nutritious food
I need to believe that I am on the road to recovery
That I am doing the right thing for me and my family
I need to know that I am perfect the way I am
That everything is exactly as it should be
I need to learn to like myself
Love myself
And accept myself
Flaws and all
This is not easy
But either is living with an ED
I'm living my life
As best as I can
I am ok
Or at least I will be........

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Christmas Cake

We have been talking about making a Christmas cake for years
So yesterday we all gathered together
My two sisters
My Mum
And my nephew who is 14
And of course Honey and Lea were never too far away from us
We all helped make it and mix it
And despite 3 addicts in the room
We added half a bottle of sherry
Well it is Christmas after all

To give you an idea of what we did
We soaked the fruit and almonds and orange zest in cherry for 24 hours
The next day we mixed the butter and sugar, almonds and eggs until the mixture was smooth
It's important to mix it thoroughly or else the cake could collapse in the oven
Or the fruit could sink
Once everything was mixed together
We popped it in the oven at 140 degrees for four hours
Checking it half way through and covering it with tinfoil so the top doesn't burn
Once cooked it smelled amazing
We let it stand on a wire tray until it cooled down
And tested it with a skewer to make sure it was cooked through
We now feed the cake with sherry at regular intervals
Making little holes through the cake
And pouring the alcohol in
The cake should be ready in 3-4 weels

We had a lovely time making it
And a good time was had by all
Here are some photos.......

Tullan Strand

In an effort to cheer myself up
My Mother, my sister and I and of course Honey and Lea
Went for a walk this morning on Tullan Strand
There were loads of surfers there today
And Honey stole one of their bottles of water
I didn't realize until we were half way down the beach
And by that stage she had it pretty mangled
Anyway here is some photographic evidence.......

Honey the thief

All the little dots in the water are surfers

Saturday, 15 November 2014


I'm really struggling with my body image at the moment
I was due to post a clothes post today
My last one
But when I saw the photos
I couldn't bring myself to post them
I don't look like myself any more
I don't recognize myself
My cheeks are full
My face is moon like
My things resemble tree trunks
Every part of me is huge and grotesque

It's really quite distressing
And it's not just my body
I used to feel relatively ok about my face
I knew that I was no great beauty
Or anything like it
But my face was bearable
I could tolerate it
But now
I feel positively ugly
And can't quite stand to look at myself in the mirror

It's just really horrible to feel this way
And  to say that I felt more comfortable in my body when I was drastically underweight is scary
At least then there was less of me
Less of the ugliness
Now I feel like I take up so much space
I feel like I am well over weight
It's making life difficult
I have gone through many periods over the last week, where I didn't eat for a prolonged period of time
I fasted because I want to lose weight
And I feel the urge to do that again today
I hate to say that
But it's the truth

Not even all my lovely new clothes make me feel better
They are now a reminder that I am a bigger size
I don't want this post to be all feeling sorry for myself
But I have to be honest about where I am in relation to body image
Showers are an ordeal
Washing my body
I feel all the lumps and bumps and curves
It can be really upsetting
I feel embarrassed
I feel ashamed
I feel guilty
Guilty for eating
Guilty for beginning to recover
Ashamed that I can't even do that right
My ED tells me that I am a failure
That I am an anorectic mind in a healthy persons body
An imposter
My ED tells me that I need to lose X pounds
I see thin and pretty girls every where I go
And I feel like a heffalump beside them

I know they say that real beauty is on the inside
That the body is just a vessel
That all the things that matter are beneath the surface of the skin
I know that at heart
I am a good person
I try to be the best person I can be
And that my body is just a shell that carries the real person
But that is no comfort to me right now
Right now all I can see is flesh
And curves
And roundness
And more flesh

I guess maybe that is part of the reason that I was buying so many new clothes
To try and make myself look half decent
And that worked
Albeit for half an hour
I just wish that I knew how to make the best of myself
I wish I knew how to dress my new body
How to apply make up
And do my hair
I have no earthly idea how to do these things
I never went through that phase
I want to feel good about myself
I want to look in the mirror and not want to cry
I'm not asking to look like a supermodel
I just want to feel secure
And confident
Is that too much to ask?

I know that I am still on the middle of a transition
I know that my weight and shape will settle down
I just need to be patient
I need to be kind to myself
Be gentle with myself
Instead of berating and insulting myself in my own head
The urge to use ED behaviours is massive
Not to eat
To exercise
To slip back in to old patterns
It would be so easy
I have to keep giving myself pep talks
Talk myself out of going down that road again
It's just hard
It's really f**king hard

I hate being so wrapped up in my own stuff
My very own brand of navel-gazing
But I don't just wax lyrical
This stuff is effecting my life
And confidence
And my mental health
I crave escape
I want to sleep so long that I wake up thin
I think about the oblivion of drugs
But of course that comes at a price
And I am not willing to pay that price any more

Bulimia still blights my life
I can't seem to let it go
It seems that this is as good as it gets for me right now
This is as much as I can handle
I'm just to tired of fighting
Fighting all day every day
Fighting against my ED
Against my addiction
Against my instinct to escape
My urge to disappear
I'm fighting against the huge urge to check out of this planet
To leave this mess behind once and for all
I'm just so tired

Can anyone relate to this?
Has anyone gone through this?
How did you get through it?