Thursday, 27 March 2014

Darkness to light

Ever since I was discharged from hospital 6 weeks ago, I've been trying my level best to pretend that everything is fine
That I'm fine
That my life is fine
That everything is tickity-freakin'-boo
I've put on an all singing, all dancing show that I am ok
I had got so good at it that I had almost convinced myself

I wrote a couple of weeks ago about my 'half hearted overdose'
I thought I had got over it
I thought I was ok
But this week I found myself again, sitting with a bag of medication in front of me trying to think of one reason not to take it all
I felt like I was breaking down
The anxiety was overwhelming
And the binging and purging was endless
The only person who knew about the previous over dose was my mother
I didn't tell my doctor as I thought he would stop all my meds
So I carried on like nothing had happened

On Tuesday I saw Mary
I wasn't planning on telling her but somehow I just blurted it out
I told her I was thinking of doing it again
She took immediate action and asked me to wait outside while she rang my psychiatrist
Having spoke to him, she told me that I had 2 choices
I could either present at female admissions in the local psychiatric hospital
Or wait for an appointment with my psychiatrist the following day
I agreed to the latter

Mary asked me to phone my mother which I did and she immediately came home
She also asked me to guarantee my safety  until tomorrow
I agreed
But when I got home it all got too much and I overused my meds again
Not too much to call it an overdose but enough to knock me out

I was nervous to see my psychiatrist the next morning
My mother came with me
I explained the situation to me
He said that I need extra support
And I do
I really do
He also prescribed me prozac which has proven very effective in people with eds
He talked at great length at how important it is to have a structure to my day
I agree
At the moment I have no purpose
No reason to get up in the morning
I am just floating along
So he is going to have someone from occupational therapy contact me
I left feeling slightly better
Slightly more hopeful

I have since told a couple of people how bad things are at the moment
I have to say I was surprised and relieved at how great people been
And it feels like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders
I don't have to pretend now
I don't have to wear the 'I'm fine' mask

I'm just back from seeing Mary again today
She is being amazing as always
We talked a lot about anxiety today as mine seems to be getting worse
She assures me that when regular eating is established that both mood and anxiety improve greatly
That itself is a motivator
I swear I can't stand this constant fear that's inside me
It effects everything that I do and stops me from doing most things that I want to do
I made a plan with Mary for the week
I have to do it
More than having to do it, I want to do it

The point of this post is not to tell you about my horrible week
It's to tell you that there is help
That you don't have to do this alone
I think that eating disorders thrive on secrecy and lies
We keep so much to ourselves because we are afraid
Afraid of our coping mechanism being taken away
Afraid that people won't understand
That they will judge us or think less of us
Afraid of being a burden
Of letting people down
But most of all we are afraid of life without our eating disorder
Who will we be?
What will we do?
What if we fail?
What if we're not good enough?
What if people don't like us?
What if?
What if?
What if?.........

Up until yesterday I really thought that pretending I was ok was best for everyone
My parents wouldn't worry
My doctor wouldn't change my meds
Everything was just ticking along and as long as Ruby seemed ok there was no panic
But the thing about this is that you can only pretend you're ok for so long
It's exhausting
It's draining
It's impossible to maintain

I didn't want to ask for help
I felt that I should be able to do this alone
I felt I was weak
It came down to 2 choices
Either lie down and admit defeat and take that bag of medication
Or reach out and tell someone
I'm so glad that I choose the latter
Because I do need help
And there is no shame in that

If you are anything like me you probably compare yourself to everyone and anyone
I look at other people and see them holding down jobs and raising children and being an all round superwoman
I spend so much time doing this that I forget about me
I forget that I am enough
I am a good person
I am able and strong and I can do these things too
My psychiatrist told me yesterday that I have many chronic conditions
I was quite shocked to hear this
I had never heard anyone put it like that before
I had always out my behaviours down  to being a bad person
I have to remind myself that I am sick
I am unwell
I do need help
I do need support
And that's ok

What I am trying to say here is that if you are struggling today
If you are feeling beaten and broken
If you can't see anyway out
If you have lost all hope
If you feel that you can't take anymore
Please tell someone
If there is only one thing you do today, tell someone
I promise you the relief you will feel is immense
Sharing the burden will make you feel so much better
After all if a friend came to you with a problem, wouldn't you do everything in your power to help them?
So whether it's your mother or father, your sister, your friend, your doctor
Tell someone
Do it today
I did it and I am already starting to feel better
A little bit stronger
A little bit more in control of my own life

You are not what your ed would have you believe
You are not fat or ugly
You are not a bad person
You are not selfish or needy
You are not a burden
Don't let your ed tell you otherwise

I know that I have a long way to go
I know that recovery is a lifetime or work
I don't profess to be doing it all perfectly
I'm still in it up to my neck
But this week I made a start
I broke my silence and told someone
And the help and support I got this week was amazing
With the help of my friends and family, I now feel like I have chance
A chance to live
You can too
It's right there, you just need to reach out and grab it

Today I feel hopeful
That I am not a lost cause
You're not either
Please remember that
We can do this
We can go from darkness to light


  1. Whatever conditions your psychiatrist is saying you have, it's not due to you being a bad person. I think that thought is what struck me the most in this post. I've been thinking a lot about the "deserving" aspect of these struggles. "I don't deserve to be skinny," "I don't deserve to eat more than 400 calories." "I deserve to run until my legs collapse." The thought of reward and punishment, of how we earn our unhappiness. How did those thoughts manifest? Who cam in and told us that we had no right to earn a life? So I'll tell you what I told Bella and what you told us in this post. You deserve it. You deserve everything positive you want in life. I really hope things take a turn for the better hon. Also, Bella said that my blog stopped popping up in people's feed, so here's the new address. It's just a name change.

  2. It's true Ruby, we can all go from darkness to light, what we were in the past is not who we have to be in the future... I agree we need to reach out when we are feeling low, there is so much help... I pray and send out good thoughts to you Ruby :)

  3. Ruby, I just want to thank you so much for being such an amazing person. I've been following your blog for over a year, and I've never commented before, but today I was having an awful day and then I read this post-which was exactly what I needed. It made me feel so much better about what was happening. Seeing what you've done has really inspired me, and made me think that things can get better. I'm glad things have started to improve for you, too; you don't deserve anything less

  4. I found prozac to be very helpful with the urge to binge and I hope you will too. No matter what keep honest with the doctors otherwise it won't get better. EDs hate honesty.

  5. Fuck we're all heading downhill in 2014, aren't we :(

    *Huggles* This year blows. Blanket fort time?

    Reason: I'm coming to visit in November and if you've offed yourself I WILL write embarrassing things and horrible puns all over your gravestone with chalk. I BLOODY WELL WILL. If you're still around and want to hang out at some point while I'm up there (Maybe crash a NaNoWriMo write-in together or something? I can be the crazy foreign shield)

    Just look after yourself as much as you can, ok?

    Yes. This post. You are NOT weak for asking for help when you need it (I still struggle with this.) and pretending things are fine when they're not hurts you more in the end.

    You are a BAMF. You are nothing that your ED tries to tell you that you are. You are the opposite. You are wonderful and strong and awesome. You are not a burden to your friends.

    You don't have to do everything perfectly. Life is messy, so are people. Mixes of goo things and bad things. The hardest part of growing up is realising that there are no pure good or pure evil people. It's all mixed up and weird. Forgive yourself for making the occasional balls-up, ok? Obsession with perfection is ED-Head trying to make you feel worse for doing stupid human things.

    Kia kaha, Ruby. Sending you love fromt he bottom of the world <3

  6. Oh Ruby, I'm sorry you hit such a low. The constant, crushing feeling of anxiety is one I know all too well. I'm proud of you for reaching out and asking for help. Sometimes it takes reaching a crossroads between life and death, reaching out or giving up, and I'm glad you chose reaching out.
    Your psychiatrist sounds like he's on the ball. Personally prozac and I don't mix, though I know a few other bloggers who it's really helped. He's so right about needing structure to the day, it's something I'm working on lately myself.
    Your words give me a sense of hope, even if I can't believe those things about myself now, maybe one day I will. You're an inspiration Ruby, you really are.
    I hope your week turns out according to plan. I love you to pieces, never forget. Keep holding on to whatever you can. *HUGS* <3 xx


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