Sunday, 30 November 2014

Clumsy

I don't know where this post is going
But I feel the need to write
So we'll just go with it...

Something I have noticed in recent weeks
Is how very clumsy I have become
I literally fall
And trip
And bang my way through the day
Thinking back
I'm not sure when this started
Maybe I have always been accident prone
But it seems to be getting worse the older I get

This year has been a catalogue of mini disasters
Back when I got my new teeth
I had many incidences where I lost them
Like the time a dog headbutted me and knocked one out
Then I lost one in the swimming pool
Three came out when I was away during the summer
And twice I swallowed a tooth
And had to promptly purge it back up
I have learned the hard way to be extra careful with my precious new teeth
I avoid toffee sweets
Crusty bread
And chewing gum
I chew my food carefully
Sometime checking the contents of my mouth with my tongue to make sure no tooth has fallen out
Disgusting I know
But it has to be done

The past few days have been especially full with calamities
I dropped one of my Mum's good bowls in the sink and smashed it
I opened a tin of sardines and the tomato sauce went everywhere
Including all over me
I knocked a cup of tea over in the living room and ruined my Mother's slippers
I knocked a jar of mustard out of the sink
And when cooking today
I flicked a piece of piping hot onion in to the corner of my eye
It burned in to my skin as I struggled to pick it out
And this is all in the last couple of days
Also I am forever tripping over the dogs
Especially Lea
But that's not entirely my fault as she is always under my feet

When I was smoking I really was a danger
I used to sit in the living room
In front of the fire
Smoking up the chimney
I was constantly dropping hot ash and cigarettes on to the mat
That mat had to be replaced more times than I care to remember
I also used to knock over cups of tea daily
Glasses of juice
And anything I happened to be eating that day
I am happy to report that we have had a mat for some months now without any incident
Well, not many anyway

My sister is always telling me that I need to be more mindful
And concentrate on what I am doing
You see
My problem is that my mind is constantly one step ahead of my body
And my body is always playing catch up
So inevitably accidents happen

I remember when I did the mindfulness course back in the spring
That was something that we learned about
Being present in the here and now
I have to admit
I am rarely
If ever
In the present moment
I'm either thinking about something that has happened
Or something that will happen
My mind is never still
It's something that I have to actively make myself do

I think back over the years
And I have had some spectacularly embarrassing moments with regards to my clumsiness
I remember when I asked to my first grad
I wore a pair of shoes that I could not walk in
I was walking down the stairs of the club
Slipped off my shoe
And came crashing down the stairs
I picked myself up
Only to fall again two seconds later
Not my finest hour

I have broken toilets
Fell on people
Fell over people
Fallen over my own feet so many times
Fallen off a trampoline
I have left doors open so Honey has gotten in to a bedroom and peed on the bed
I could go on and on

Something funny that happened the other day
Honey and Lea are not allowed in the living room
But sometimes when my Mum is away
We let them in for a minute
So Honey came in one day
And jumped up on the couch with my sister
I took a photo
And thought no more of it
Then on Friday my Mum was looking through my new iphone
And was looking at the photos
I completely forgot that the one of Honey on the couch was  there
My Mother saw it
She was not best pleased
And me and Honey were in the dog house

I was wondering
Am I the only one like this?
Can you relate to being clumsy?
If you can
I really think we should set up a support group
Ok I'm joking
But seriously
Can you relate?

I'll leave you with a photo of Honey spending a lazy Sunday on her favourite chair
Head on chair arm
And leg hanging down



You

I know that I shouldn't feed the trolls
But in this instance I can't help myself
This post is directed at anaschallenge
You have been leaving comment on my blog
Asking me to join a weight loss challenege
And I know you have been commenting on other blogs too
I've asked you already
And I will ask you again
Politely
Please stop commenting
You are upsetting me and my readers
We are too busy fighting this illness
And do not have the energy or the inclination to court it
I have some doubts that you are a real person
As your English is pigeon like
By all means
Go ahead and have your weight loss challenge
But don't expect me or any of my friends to take part
Again
Please stop commenting
You are upsetting people who are already upset enough

Saturday, 29 November 2014

Random Facts

You all know me quite well by now
I don't censor my blog is any way
And make it a point to be nothing but honest
You all know that I am a recovering addict
And that I struggle with anorexia and bulimia
And even though sometimes it doesn't feel like it
There is a lot more to me than my conditions
So I thought I would share a few random facts with you
And hope that you will share some with me
Here goes......

I am the youngest of 4 children

I have 2 older sisters and an older brother

My first pet was a cat called Wanda

I grew up in a semi detached house in the midlands of Ireland

My bestfriends were two sisters that lived two doors up

My house was not a happy place growing up

And I wasn't close to any of my family

Even a a child I knew that I had an addictive personality

I studied ballet up until the age of 16

I also swam for my county and won a bronze medal in the all Ireland's

My favourite subject in school was English

I never went to college

I'm afraid that I am not very smart

I have one nephew who is 14

My first job after school was working in a camera and photo developing shop

When I was a teenager I loved going to raves/clubs

I first took ecstacy when I was 15

My first boyfriend's name was Michael

We were together for 8 months

I've always loved reading

And writing

I used to be a night owl, now I am more of a morning person

I get really annoyed with myself if I sleep in in the morning

Even though I do not surf, my style is kind of a surfer look

I love to clothes shop

I smoked for 20 years

I was a 30 a day smoker

I am clean and sober 5 years

I first became aware of my ED when I was 18

I was in denial for a long time

I am a tv addict

My favourite shows are Breaking Bad and Orange is the new black

I love music

All types of music

I love Bat for Lashes, Rudimental, Eminem, Lana Del Ray

When I was young I wanted to be a vet when I grew up

I'm a dreamer

Next spring I plan to walk part of the Camino with my sister

One of my dreams is to open and run a dog friendly Bed and Breakfast

I've been in treatment 8 times

But I've always done best when I got well from home

I'm not very good at managing money

And I'm really bad at saving

I'm convinced that I am fat

My favourite cuisine is Italian

My favourite food is probably beef stew

Talking in front of people terrifies me

I am quite shy and quiet at heart

But when you get to know me I am quite the chatter box

I don't use Facebook

And don't really see the attraction of it

I've been blogging for two and a half years

And I absolutely love it

My sister came home from Australia this summer

She was there for 12 years

I've been to Australia twice

I would love to go travelling

And I would love to live in the US for a time

I write much better than I speak

I recently got my first iphone

I'm thinking of getting my first tattoo

I might get a sunflower on my arm

My parents have been separated for 15 years

They get on much better now

I don't know if I want to get married

But maybe that will change if I meet the right person

If I lived in my own house I would have lots more animals

More dogs

And two donkeys, I love donkeys

I'm  not religious but would consider myself spiritual

I am afraid of myself sometimes

My favourite films are The Lost Boys, Sideways and The Godfather

My party trick is being able to do mirror writing, writing with both hands, one going left, the other going right

So there are a few random facts about me
What about you?
What are some random facts about you?

Treatment

Do you remember when I told you that I might be meeting some friends from treatment?
Well it's happening
Next Friday
I feel a mixture of terror and excitement
I really want to go
But it will be a  huge deal for me
We are meeting in Dublin
And Dublin is the place that I used to do a lot of my using
I rarely venture up there
And especially not on my own
I just wouldn't trust myself
Even after all this time
The smells and sights of Dublin have the power to trigger me so much that I know I would use if I was given half a chance
Luckily, I will be travelling with my friend
We will get the train in the morning
Meet the others for lunch
And of course a chat
Then we're going to hit the shops
And as you know that is right up my street

The only thing is that  the friend I am travelling with is staying the night there
So I will have to travel back on my own
I am a bit nervous about that
But I am confident that I will get home in one piece
Hopefully

When we were in treatment
I was the thinnest
Even though I didn't feel it at the time
I was always told that I was
Now I am probably going to be the biggest out of all the girls
This unsettles me a little
But I know my friends will feel nothing but happiness that I am getting well
I know that I would feel that way for them

I've been thinking a lot about treatment recently
Probably because this time last year I was there
It's all so recent
I can remember it like it was yesterday
Putting up the Christmas decorations
Dancing around with each other
Watching the X Factor
Eating endless meals
Lining up for meds
Post meal group
Walking laps of the grounds on our skinny little legs
Having conversations about feeling fat
Crying
Laughing
We really did go through a lot in there
We saw each other at our very worst
When we were weak and malnourished
Tired and afraid
Emotional
At the very end of our rope
You bond  quickly in treatment
Very quickly
And you never forget the girls that were in treatment with you
They are imprinted in to your brain for eternity

Looking back
I can now see that when I went in to treatment I really did want to get well
I wanted to recover
But I learned that treatment does not
And never has worked for me
The environment doesn't suit me
The fact I was surrounded my girls also struggling sent me straight in to the arms of my ED
I've always done much better getting well from home
On my terms
That's not to say treatment didn't help
It did
Everytime I was admitted I got something out of it
A little bit of strength
Of hope
Of belief
I always took something from my stay

Going to see my friends on Friday is a big deal for me
It's really stepping outside my comfort zone
Something I don't do very often
But I want to do this
I really do
I know it will be good for me


Friday, 28 November 2014

Mirror mirror

It was this morning
My Mother, my sister and I were doing the weekly food shop
We had just finished in one supermarket (The less expensive one where we get all our fruit and veg)
And we were heading for the shopping center
I was walking along
Not a care in the world
Minding my own business
We reached the automatic doors
And just before they opened
I saw a reflection
I didn't recognize it at first
It looked vaguely familiar
But we live in a small town
So I presumed it was someone that I knew
I scanned up the body
The clothes
I have those leggings
I thought to myself
And that jacket too
Is it me?
Surely that body is too big to be me
Surely I am smaller than that
I scanned up to the face
And got a shock when I saw that it was me
It is me

I stopped mid sentence
And my reflection continued to walk towards me
I was about to reach out and touch it
When the doors opened
And my reflection disappeared
I disappeared

In that second I lost the plot in my head
To everyone else I probably looked perfectly normal
Like just another shopper
But in my head
Anorexia was screaming
Words that I won't repeat here
In that moment
Recovery could go f**k itself
In that moment
I wanted to starve and drink and use
In that moment
Nothing mattered
Nothing but getting out of my own head
And my own body
In that moment
I wanted to disappear
Never to be seen again

You know when a really over weight person loses a lot of weight
And even though they are now thin
They still think of themselves as fat
Sometimes even see a fat person
Well I think I am the exact opposite
I have been underweight
Now I am over weight
And I still see myself as underweight person
My mind hasn't made the transition yet

You know
At that moment in time
I really hoped that I did have body dysmorphia
I really hoped that what I saw in that reflection was not the truth
I hoped that my vision was warped
Because I couldn't take it in
I just couldn't

When I got home
I was still all over the place
I wanted to fast
I wanted to weigh myself
To prove  to myself that I either was wasn't over weight
But now
It is a few hours later
I've calmed down some
I know that I am of an average healthy weight
I know that I have not gained 3 stone over night
I really want to accept this body
To feel comfortable in my own skin
I just got such a shock when I saw myself today

I'm trying to like this body
I think one of most attractive things is confidence
And an ability to work with what you have got
So that's what I will do
Even if the confidence is not real
Fake it 'til you make it right?
That's exactly what I will do
I won't punish myself
I won't starve my poor body
I will continue to move away from the grip of my ED
What is the alternative?

ED

It seems that I am writing less and less about my ED
I think that is a good sign
It's a sign that it's not in the forefront of my mind
It's not and urgent and pressing issue
Don't get me wrong
It's still in my life
Bulimia is proving to be very stubborn
But things are 100 times better than they were
Even my perception of weight has changed
I used to crave skinny
Sharp edges and pointy bones
But now I can see that for what it is
A very ill body
And a very sick mind
Now I want to be fit and healthy
More than I want to be skinny

I don't know if I can say I am comfortable with my body at the moment
I am a bit heavier than I would like to be
But isn't that always the way
I thought I could lose some when I was severely underweight
So go figure

They say you should count your blessings slowly
And one at a time
I have a lot o be grateful for
I've come through drug and alcohol addiction
And my ED relatively unscathed
Not  lot of people can say that I would imagine
Sometimes I wonder why my family has been given so much hardship?
Why have we had to suffer so much?
Why does it seem that some people have it so easy?
But I guess it is all relative
My family have come out other side stronger and closer than ever
So there is a silver lining to all this

I think the question now is
Where do I go from here?
If I don't write about my ED or addiction
Then what the hell do I write about?
I only really started writing two and a half years ago
When I started this blog
And 95% of this blog has been about my ED or my addiction
Because that was all I knew
That was my life
Even if I wanted to write about something else
I just couldn't
I couldn't write about love
Or death
Or mystery
Because I hadn't experienced them
Because my ED took up every waking moment
I knew it so well
And I could write about it because I knew it so intimately
I genuinely couldn't think of any thing else to write about

But now my world is expanding
I am experiencing new things every day
I don't know if they make for as compelling reading as my ED
But it's important for me to know that I am not a one  trick pony
That I can write about other things
Probably the greatest kick I get out of writing
Is writing  funny or sarcastic pieces
I guess it is debatable as to whether they are actually funny
My sense of humour is an acquired taste
But still
I like to write them

They say you should write what you know
Well
I know drugs
I know alcohol
I know anorexia
I know bulimia
Correction
I knew them
Now it's time to know something else
To live
To love
To travel
To sing
To write
To feel
To dance
To walk
To run
To find
To keep
To laugh
To cry
To scream
To live life on my terms

Anorexia you don't control me any more
You can't manipulate me
You can't trick me
You can't catch me in your web of lies and deceit
I am stronger than you now
I know you too well
To let you trap me again
I knew it would be hard to get you out of my life
It was
The hardest thing I have ever done
But it was worth it
It was worth it a million times over

If you are struggling today
If you can't find a reason to get out of bed
If you can't find a reason to go on
If you feel that there is no hope
If you have lost all faith
And belief
If you are thinking about disappearing
Please know this
You are stronger than you ever thought possible
You are more beautiful than you ever imagined
You are thinner than the mirror shows
You are prettier than you see
You are more capable than you think
You are more caring and loving than you let show
You are smarter than you know
I promise you that

Anorexia/bulimia fill our heads with lies
They whisper in our ears until we don't know what is real any more
I know that I have questioned my sanity many times over the years
And feared that I was losing my mind along with all of the weight
This is why it's so f**king hard to break free
Because our ED has warped our mind so much
We don' know what is real any more
We live in a strange parallel universe
Where everything is topsy turvy
This is why that first step out of ED is so important
When the professionals finally got my meds right
The fog of depression I was living in lifted
And I felt  I could see straight for the first time in years
When we are starved
We can't see a way out
It's terrifying
But I promise you it is possible
I know that I have still a mountain to climb in terms of getting well
But I would rather climb this mountain bare foot and in a bikini
Rather than go back to the way things were
Of that I have no doubt

So if you are reading this today
This is a reminder never to give up
Never stop believing that things can improve
They can
And they will
I promise you that


Thursday, 27 November 2014

Video

I spent about 10 hours yesterday fiddling around with my new phone
And I am still none the wiser
Only that my sister is something of a tech-expert
Have I managed to use it at all
Setting up all my passwords was bit of an ordeal
My sister was getting a great laugh out of watching me trying to get the hang of it
She also took a video of me
Of which I was only half aware of
If you listen carefully you will hear my sister call me by my real name
So to give you a laugh
I am going to share it with you
Yes, I am a technophobe
Yes, I come across completely stupid
But bear in mind this is my first iphone
Anyway
Here it is
I hope it gives you a giggle....

video

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

iphone

So today was the day
I finally got my iphone
My sister and I ventured in to town early this morning
And picked it up
Along with a cover
It cost more than I thought it would
But my sister assures me that it will be worth it
Here are some photos from the day....


This was part of an exhibition we went to see


Light installation


Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Tuesday

My sister and I got up early this morning
And brought Honey and Lea for a walk down by the sea
On the way I had to stop at the garage
And we saw this cute little dog in the back of a pick up
He was tied up
And he was shivering
The poor little guy
Here he is








Monday, 24 November 2014

Heroin

I watched a documentary last night called The Moment of Truth
I was about an Irish man called Alan
Who was a former heroin addict who had been homeless for many years
He grew up in Dublin with his Mother and her partner
When he was a teenager he became involved in the rave scene
He stared experimenting with drugs
First cannabis
Then ecstacy
And when he was 17 he tried heroin for the first time
He was instantly hooked
He described that first feeling her felt when he took he drug
Like feeling he was 'wrapped in cotton wool'
I think that is such an accurate way to describe it
Around this time he started seeing a girl called Orla
But as Alan's addiction escalated
The relationship dissolved
His Mum was interviewed also
She described he moment when she had to use tough love
And refused to let him stay in her house anymore
Alan was homeless for many years
Begging on the streets
A slave to the drug
Orla still kept in touch with him
She described how she used to search he streets for him
But she couldn't be with him while he was so deep in his addiction

It was while he was on the streets that Alan met a man who changed his life
This man was a christian and used to stop and talk to Alan
And told him that God could save him
At first Alan was sceptical
How could God save him?
But the man continued to visit Alan
He told him that he could help me get in to a treatment center in the UK
A christian rehabilitation center
Alan agreed to go
His Mother and Orla helped him gather the fare to Wales
He described how on he morning of his departure
His Mother gave him money to buy heroin
As she knew he wouldn't get on the plane if he didn't have drugs
This really hit a nerve with me
As there have been many time in my life when my Mother gave me money to buy drugs
And even drove me to get drugs
As she couldn't bear to see me in withdrawal

Alan stayed in the christian center in Wales for some time
While there he had a vision of Jesus Christ
And Jesus said three words to him

I

Love

You

Alan said after that everything changed
He finished his time in the center
And hen began studying to become a pastor
He completely turned his life around
And now helps other struggling addicts
A really nice end to the story was that he got back together with Orla
They got married
And had two children
I was so delighted that the story had a happy ending
So many stories don't

My Mother and sister also watched he documentary
And it gave rise to a discussion about my drug use
My sister is quite sceptical about anything to do with religion
But my Mother said that his experience was real to him
And we should respect that
She is right
What ever works right?
I said that I thought it was great that Alan found God and recovered
That was his path
But what if you don't find God?
What if you don't have a God in your life?
What then?
Can I still recover if I don't have a God in my life?
My Mother pointed out that God could be anything
Something similar to what they tell you in AA
I think this is a good point
As I have things in my life that help me greatly
Like my dogs
My writing
My swimming
And I have great faith in those things

My Mum and I talked for a while about my using days
The time we went away for Christmas and I went in to severe withdrawal
And had to search for a doctor to get some meds
I can remember that time
I actually thought that I was going to die
I look at photos of that Christmas and I look like the living dead
Or the time I stayed in my Grandad's house
And again went in to withdrawal
Another nightmare
Or the time she locked herself in her bedroom because I had completely lost the plot and she was afraid of me
She was actually afraid of me
That in itself is so sad

My Mum commented that she probably doesn't know the half of what went on when I was using
And she is right
I myself can't bring myself to talk or even think about what went on during that time
I often say that there are times when  I can't remember if an even actually happened
Or if I dreamed it
There is one even that often pops in to my head
I can't remember how
But I met a guy on the street
We used together
And I went back to his flat with him
At some point I overdosed
And this guy stayed with me until I came to
I remember he put me in the shower to help wake me up
And made me tea and toast
He let me stay in his flat for a couple of days
And was nothing but kind to me
I went home a few days  later
But kept in touch by phone
I was so grateful to him
For taking care of me
And for not taking advantage of me
The next time I was back in Dublin
I went to the street where his flat was
I rang the bell
A girl answered
I asked for the guy
She said no one of that name lived there
And never had
I was so confused
And started to question my own sanity
I never heard from that guy again
I don't know if he ever existed in the first place

My Mum described to me how awful I used to look when I was using
She used the words 'down and out'
I was scarily skinny
Big dark circles under my eyes
Hunched over
Taking care of yourself just isn't a priority when you are strung out

I saw my doctor this morning
And was telling him that I am 15 weeks off cigarettes today
He said that was fantastic
And that I am doing well 'on all fronts'
My Mother and I continued our discussion as we walked the dogs
We talked about my old town
And how now it is flooded with drugs
And how we never thought we would end up in this town
My Mother told me how moving here was very hard on her
That was the first time I heard her say that
Because while my using was going on
She was separating from my Dad
At the time I had no concept of what she was going through
I was so blinkered my addiction

We also talked about methadone
How when I first went on it at  19
I was the only person in my town on it
I had to travel to Dublin every week to get my script
And how I hated going in to chemist
I actually had a go at the pharmacist one day
Because I thought she was looking down on me
Of course she wasn't
She was actually very good to me
My thinking was just so warped

This all seems like a life time ago
I am clean and sober a few years now
Some times I still get intense cravings
Sometimes I fear that I will use again
Sometimes that life looks attractive
But in reality it was a living hell
It was a race to not be sick
And I was always playing catch up

Alan said that even in his darkest days
He was never a hard man
The way some people are hardened and more equipped to handle themselves
I was never like that either
I was a young country girl
In the big city
I was so vulnerable
And people could and  often did take advantage of me
Even though I have been through a lot
I am at heart a big softie
And have an innocent face
So I was a prime target

I am so grateful to be clean and sober today
I am so relieved for myself
But also for my family
Who lived through it with me
Especially my Mother
Who saw it all
But we've come out the other side
And as my Mother always says
Given what this family has been through
We are not doing to badly

Sunday, 23 November 2014

iphone

I an so excited
Wednesday
This Wednesday
As in three days away
I am getting my first
Yes, my first
iphone
I know
I know
I  have been living in the dark ages for some time now with my little Nokia Asha 302
I have been getting by with just calls, texts and emails
No internet
Oh yes
I have been one of those people who looks at someone engrossed in their phone
And wondering what the hell could be holding their attention for so long
Soon I will know
Soon I will be privy to that information
I am expecting great things

My sister has an iphone
I would say she spends 23 hours a day looking at it
It is permanently attached to her hand
While she is talking
Watching tv
Eating
Cooking
Her phone is her constant companion
I ask her at least 3 times a day
'What are you looking at?'
Sometimes she replies
Sometimes she is so engrossed that my voice doesn't even register
Sometimes I look over her shoulder to see what is engaging her so
It is always some random thing
Like the weather
Or sites selling antique books
Or cats falling off chairs
Soon all of these delights will just be a click away for me
I can't wait to waste time scouring the internet for anything and everything that comes to my mind
Oh yes
Me and my new iphone will bond quickly
And form a relationship that knows no bounds
I may even name her
We will be BFFs forever
And ever
And ever

Of course I will have to say goodbye to my little nokia
I knew our relationship was doomed when I was in hospital last year
And I saw a 70 year old man with the same phone as me
After that
Well
I couldn't take my phone out with out feeling  a frisson of embarrassment
Like a jumper that your granny knit you
You feel that you have to wear it
But do so begrudgingly
This is how I feel about my phone
A reluctant sense of loyalty

But I hung on to my phone
Because there was no reason to get rid of it
It worked perfectly well
And never having had the internet on my phone
I didn't know what I was missing
So we muddled along
Me and my Nokia
Pretending that we were willing partners in this thing
To its face I was perfectly pleasant
But when it wasn't around I bitched and moaned about him incessantly

And then
The straw that broke the phones service
My email
My precious email
All three accounts were suddenly cut off
Send in the horse men
The apocalypse is a comin'
I was distraught
No email meant that when I was away from my laptop
I was constantly worried about the potential emails that lay unread in my inbox
It was all I could think about
The people trying to contact me
The comments from my blog I had no access to
It was a nightmare

I brought the failing phone in to my service provider
There, a young greasy guy, chewing gum told me without even looking at my phone
That he couldn't help me
I asked him politely if he would at least check the phone
He did
And repeated that he had no idea what was wrong
I despaired

I turned around and looked at all the shiny new phones on the wall
They all boasted cool and exciting features
I felt drunk desire
The possibilities were endless
The world would be at my finger tips
It would be criminal not to at least ask about these phones
I turned back to my friend
'How much is an iphone?' I asked
He handed me a leaflet with various plans on it
He obviously couldn't be bothered to tell me when it was all written there for me
I scanned the page
My eyes settled on the iphone 4
At 35Euros a month
I asked some questions
He was mostly unhelpful
I wasn't getting anywhere with this guy
So I left with my leaflet
My Nokia was safe
For now

I was pretty pleased with myself that I hadn't been my usual impulsive self
And got the iphone right there and then
I practised restraint
And decided to think it over
And now
A little over 24 hours later
I have decided that I will
No
I must
Have one
And Wednesday is the day
Hello 21st century
Here I come........



Strand Hill, November 2014

My Mum, my sister and I spent a lovely day in town yesterday
We went for breakfast
Hit the shops
Where I bought pyjamas and leggings
Then we went to Strand Hill for a spot of lunch
My Mum had a BLT with tea
My sister went for the burger
And I had a beef Hot Pot
Which was lip smacking good
We had a lovely lovely day
Even though on the way home
Smoke started billowing from the engine
And we had to pull over and escape from the car
Luckily we were near my other sisters house
So she came and rescued us
And the AA came and saved the car
(Not Alcoholics Anonymous
The Automobile Association)
Here are some photos from the day......

Add caption

obligatory selfie


Wearing my sisters new hat, it may be a bit big for me

Concentration

Happy  girl

Saturday, 22 November 2014

Brave?

I've been called brave a few times in my life
My Mother has called me brave a lot over the years
In treatment they said I was brave
I'm not convinced

Brave?
Let's talk about brave
Brave rises before the sun
And takes a two hour train ride to work

Brave gets up many time in the night to feed a hungry baby

Brave fights in wars and battles
In the world
And in their own head

Brave believes they can
Even when they are told over and over again that they can't

Brave is themselves
Even when they are told it's not enough

Brave falls down seven times
And gets up eight

Brave faces cold mornings
And frosty air
To make  sure that their children eat that day

Brave stands up to the bullies in this world


Brave leaves their home to start over
To make a better life for themselves and their family

Brave doesn't give up
Even when everyone else has

Brave believes that things can and will get better
Even when their world is crumbling


Brave speaks their truth
Even when others try to silence them

Brave is honest
Doesn't know how to be any other way

Brave holds it together
Even when they feel like they are dying inside

Brave faces their demons head on
And does it with grace and poise

Brave works long hours
Early mornings
And late nights

Brave fights for what they believe in
To the bitter end

Brave faces their bullies
And won't let them bring her down

As a result of brave
Families get reared
Jobs get done
Lives are saved
The truth gets told
Wars are fought and won

Brave is your Mother
Your Father
The woman who begs on the corner of the street
The farmer who gets up at day break every morning
The nurse who tends to sick people day after day
The child who dares to be different
The Mum who is sleep deprived
The Dad who braves the cold morning to watch his son play football

Brave is not some huge act of courage
It's the little things
The little things that go largely unnoticed
But that we would miss of they weren't there






Progress Report

It seems that when people do progress reports on the internet
It's mostly to do with losing weight
Endless before and after photos
Of people posting their miraculous weight loss
20 pounds
50 pounds
100 pounds
Photos of hip bones
And clavicles
Six packs
Long lean limbs
Bronzed skin
Glowing complexions
And that's great
Congratulations to them
My progress report is somewhat different
And so is yours probably
If you are embarking on recovery

I started of at  the beginning of the year
With a worryingly low BMI
And it continued to plummet
This was the first time I had taken photos of my emaciated body
As I wanted to document this time in my life
And as a reminder of the hell I used to live in
And a stark reminder never to go back there again
It's been a crazy year so far
But one of the best
I finally stood up to my demons
I faced them head on
And you know what?
Once I showed them that I wasn't afraid of them
And that I could overcome them
They ran in the opposite direction
Just try stopping this recovering anorectic and addict


March 2014



April 2014

May 2014

June




July 2014

September 2014

October 2014

Friday, 21 November 2014

Disconnected

Hello friends
I have managed to break my computer
I was watching a show yesterday while drinking a cup of tea
And spilt the contents of the cup on to my keyboard
Also my phone is playing up
So I am completely disconnected over here
I am so annoyed at myself for letting this happen
It's not only my computer
But my Mother's too
So I'm feeling really angry at myself today
And it may be sometime before I get a new one
So I may have to take a little break from blogger

Launna shared this quote with me
And I wanted to share it with you
It's so true


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

Recovery

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
Literally
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
Ashamed
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

Monday

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
Reading
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
Me
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