Sunday, 31 May 2015

Thoughts on recovery

I guess it is safe to say that I am in recovery
Or am I?
I think I am
I mean
I want to be
I try to be
I hope to be 
There is no doubt
That I am a million miles away from where I was 18 months ago
I was in such a dark place
My days were either spent in a frenzy of binging and purging
Or silently starving
The binging and purging was relentless 
I shit you not
In the morning 
I'd wake up
Have chocolate for breakfast 
Purge
Go shopping for binge food
Which I may or may not have paid for
Walk my dogs 
No matter how bad things got
I always walked my dogs 
Even if it was a short one when I was very ill
I'd come home
And the binging would commence
Crisps 
Chocolate
Biscuits
Pasta
Bread 
Noodles
Potatoes 
Chicken curry
It just went on and in
I literally couldn't stop
It was terrifying how out of control I was
I can remember my Dad saying to me  in the midst of the madness

'Ruby

Please

Stop'

My family would beg and plead with me
They'd get angry
Sad
Mad
They were at the end of their tether 
And so was I
It was a nightmare

I remember at night when everyone went to bed
I would tear the kitchen apart
Cooking
Making food 
Eating everything in sight
There were often times when I ate all the bread in the house
Leaving nine for anyone else 
If anyone bought biscuits or chocolate
They didn't last five minutes if I was around
I just couldn't help myself 
Couldn't control myself
Not even if I wanted to
I woke up every morning 
Dreading the day ahead
The relentless march from the kitchen to the bathroom
Over and over again
Literally going in circles 

I know that bulimia is often treated like anorexias less deadly sister
But let me tell you
From someone who has lived through both
They are equally as serious 
And anyone who wants to argue that point?
Come walk a day in my vomit stained shoes

Even when I went on to treatment last year
I still continued to binge and purge
I purged every meal
Used to raid the biscuit press
And keep a stash of biscuits in my locker
I bought shed loads of chocolate from the canteen
They must have thought I was nuts
And I'm surprised I got away with it at all
I was so sneaky 
Purging any chance I got
I was constantly ducking and diving
Trying to get around staff
Purging was my drug 
And I just couldn't stop
I can remember in all my time intreatnent
I managed only one day purge free
One day
Even with all the support I had
I left treatment weighing less than when I went in

As you know 
In the year since leaving treatment 
Things began to look up 
The incessant binging and purging stopped
And I began to gain some control over my eating
As of now
My weight is stable 
My health has drastically improved
As has my mental health
Don't get me wrong
I still haven't had a purge free day
I purge at least a couple of times a day
But things are the best they've been in a long time
Amen to that

Maybe by medical standards 
I am still unwell
And still very much bulimic
Still eating disordered 
But for me
This is as good as things get
For now

From an addiction point of view
Things are in a similar place
I'm not using heroin
Or any illegal drugs
But I still struggle to take my meds properly
And have days when I am not even on the planet earth by any stretch of the imagination
But again
Things are as good as they can be
And for now
That is enough

I guess recovery is not destination
It's not an end point
It's a process
It's ongoing
It never ends
There is a saying in AA
That they claim spiritual progress rather than spiritual perfection
I love that
It's about constantly growing
Thriving
Blossoming
Fighting for a better life

Recovery takes time 
Another saying in AA is to give time time
Again
So true
Physical recovery takes months
Psychological recovery can take years
And complete recovery can take a life time
That's the thing with eating disorders
You have the double whammy of physical and mental complications
And it really takes a toll

I don't think I have mentioned weight yet
That's the funny things about EDs
Wright does matter 
But it also doesn't matter 
I guess it doesn't matter if you're weight is considered healthy
And it does matter if you are under weight or obese
And it is having a detrimental effect on your health
I think the whole weight debate is a bit of a mine field
We are told that weight doesn't matter
Yet in treatment it becomes such a big deal
I know that I never took any notice of my weight until doctors and such began weighing me
The number seemed important to them
So it became important to me

Over the years 
I have been every weight between emaciated and healthy
But I was just as sick at my lowest weight as I was at my highest weight
That is no lie

I know that I have a lot of work to do
My recovery is a work in progress
I am no poster girl from recovery 
But am always honest about where I am
I don't see any point in sugar coating things
That helps no one
I will continue to fight for a better life
For a better future
For me and my family 
I've had a glimpse of what my life could be life
I've seen how rich and wonderful a healthy life can be
And I want more
I want to live the best life I can 

With all that said
I was wondering about you
Do you consider yourself to be in recovery?
What do you think constitutes recovery?
Which do you think is harder
Living with an ED
Or recovering from one?
What does recovery mean to you?
I'd love to know.....

Saturday, 30 May 2015

Queen Maeve's Trail, Take 2

Last month
I did a post about the walk I did with my mother and sister on this trail
Today I did it again with my brother and his partner
It was slightly different this time
As they are just a bit fitter than my mother and sister
So it was full speed ahead

Afterwards 
We went to Shells cafe for a most welcome cup of tea and a toastie
Instead of me telling you about it
Here are some photos....

















Friday, 29 May 2015

The talking scale

Friday is food shopping day in my house
During the week we leave a note pad and pen on the table
So we can write down things that we need 
As you know 
I live with my mum and my sister 
And we all have different things that we like
So our shopping list can be quite eclectic 

We have a kitty
So each week we all contribute
Depending on our own budget
It works well for us 
I think I've said before 
That my sister is an amazing cook
So we've all been eating like queens since she came home last summer
And I have picked up a lot of handy tips from her too

In a Friday morning 
Two out of the the three of us usually go shopping
My sister is doing a cookery course today
So my mum and I went to do the food shopping
Lea and Honey always come too
And we bring them for a run on the beach first 
And then head to the shops

We go to two supermarkets
First we go to Lidl
Lidl is a German shop that sells food a lot cheaper
So we pick up bread and veg and such there
Then we head over to the second supermarket
Which is on the expensive side
But it has all our favourite brands so we always go there

So we were in Lidl this morning
Every week they have a special offer on
And today it seemed to be health products
So they had a blood pressure machine
Various exercise equipment 
Work out clothes
But one specific item caught my eye
A speaking scale no less
When I saw it 
I had to take a closer look
Were my eyes deceiving me?
No
It was in fact a talking scale
The horror of it all washed over me 
I don't think I've ever in all my years weighing seen a talking scale
I can't think of anything worse
Let me explain why

I don't know about you 
But for me
Weighing is a very private and personal thing
I do it only in the privacy of my own bedroom
With the door locked
Preferably in the morning 
When I know there's no one around
The only other people I have let weigh me were doctors and of course Mary
Oh yes
It's very few people that I let weigh me
That number is just so personal 
I know I give the number too much power
But I don't think it's an ED not to let people know your exact weight
I'd say most women
And a lot of men
Like to keep their weight to themselves 

So the thought of a speaking scale?
Oh my God
It doesn't bear thinking about 
A scale that says your weight out loud
For all and sundry to hear?
No thank you very much
It's safe to say that I won't be investing in one of these

While I was in the shop
I noticed quite a lot of interest in the scales
I guess maybe a lot of people hadn't seen one before 
But Jesus H Christ
It's hard enough having to look at the number
Never mind have the thing speak it to you
I can't think of any thing worse

Here it is...




I was wondering
Am I alone in this?
What do you think of the talking scale?
Yay or nay?

Thursday, 28 May 2015

Eagles Rock

I live in a valley 
Between two mountains
It's really quite spectacular here
But I guess I am looking at it everyday
So I don't always appreciate it

There is part of the mountain near my house called Eagles Rock
Which is popular with hikers and climbers
On Sunday we went down to check it out
We weren't really prepared to do the full walk
So we just walked a little
And decided we would do it properly next week
When my brother and his girlfriend are here
And we can all do it together

So here are some photos
And by the way 
Please tell me if you think I am too tanned
My family tell me that I am
But I want to continue tanning
So I was wondering what you think
And be brutally honest
I'm a big girl 
I can handle it....








Wednesday, 27 May 2015

The beautiful ones

 Up until recently 
I was weighing every day
It was always the first thing I did in the morning
Pee
Strip
And stand on the scales 
Holding my breath as if the air in my lungs would effect the number 
I'd squeeze my eyes shut
And peep through my fingers to see my fate
I have numbers that are acceptable
Numbers that are unacceptable 
Safe numbers
Unsafe numbers
My weight tends to stay within the same five pounds
Tends to be lower in the middle of the month
And higher when I get my period
Just a quick note about periods
I didn't get mine for ten years when I was very ill
It's only in the last few months that my period has come back

Anyway
In recent weeks 
I have stopped weighing so much
As it just drives me nuts
The number on the scales dictates my mood for the whole day 
It really has the power to ruin my day
The number goes  up and I spiral in to black hole of depression
The number goes down and I sky rocket in to euphoria
But in reality
No matter what the number
My ED is never happy 
Never ever 

So I've decided to go by how I feel
And how I look
Rather than what the scale says
And I feel pretty ok
I feel steady and grounded and stable
For the most part
I feel ok in my body
Yes there are things that I would like to change
I would love to be more toned and fit
But being in my body is tolerable 
I can live with it
I've accepted that I will never be a supermodel 
Or one of the beautiful people
You know who they are
They're the ones with shiny silky hair
All tousled and messy like they've just got  out of bed
They have long, lean and tanned limbs
Perfect skin
Trendy clothes
And it all looks utterly effortless 

I on the other hand
Am not beautiful 
I'm average at best
My hair is frizzy
My skin is dry
I try to dress well
But it doesn't always work out the way I want it do
My body is flabby 
And it was even worse before I had a tan
I guess I could be improved 
By a team of stylists and make up artists
Maybe then I could be something approaching pretty
But I don't have the energy, inclination or money to do that
So I just try and make the best of what I have got 

I think the most attractive quality in someone is  confidence
You can have a beautiful face
High fashion clothes 
An expensive hair cut 
But it all means nothing 
If confidence is absent 
I don't have a whole lot of confidence 
In fact 
It's pretty non existent 
I guess I am faking it until I make it

I was wondering about you
How is your confidence? 
Does confidence come easy to you?
Or are you like me and struggle a lot?
What has helped build your confidence?

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Tuesday

I saw Breda this morning 
I was dreading having to tell her about what I did last Thursday
I was not looking forward to admitting what I had done
And in the end
I didn't 
I didn't tell her 
I just couldn't find the words
Couldn't stand another person knowing what I have done 
I think I've told enough people
I've spoken about it at meetings
Spoken to friends about it 
My sister 
I really don't think in need to tell everyone  I meet
I will speak to Mary when I see her on Thursday 
As she knows about my shoplifting past
And I won't have to do a whole load of explaining

At first
I thought I would have to hide at home
And avoid going in to town
To avoid the shop where it happened 
And the shop I was caught outside of
And anywhere else where people might know
But I decided against it
And have been going about my business as usual 
I've past the shop itself numerous times
I'm just doing what I usually do
If people know they know
There is nothing I can do about that now

I am undecided about whether to post the letter I wrote
I still have it 
But my gut instinct is not to send it
So I'm not going to
For the moment anyway

Last Thursday really shook me
I've been reliving it ever since
Beating myself up
Putting myself down
Trying to find a way to go back in time and undo it
But of course I can't 
I chose to steal from that shop
So now I have to deal with the consequences
I do acknowledge that it could have been a whole lot worse
I could be sitting in a jail cell right now 
Could have been reported in the local paper
I am eternally grateful to that girl for not calling the cops 
I don't know why she didn't 
But I am so glad she didn't 

As I write last week
All I can do is learn from this
And move on 
I have to let it go
Before I drive myself insane
I have to forgive myself 
And use this as ammunition never to do that again
If nothing but that happens 
At least something came out of all of this

I spoke to Breda about other things 
She asked me if my methadone has been reduced recently
I told her it had been
About a month ago 
She wondered if it will be reduced again soon
I wasn't sure
But to be honest 
I hope not
The less I am on
The more of reality I have to deal with
And I don't want to deal with it
It doesn't make sense really
My reality is not that bad
I live in a nice house 
With nice people
I have an amazingly strong and supportive family around me
I have a small but close circle of friends
I have Honey and Lea who mean so much to me
I have you lovely ladies 
A roof over my head
Food in my fridge
Clothes in my wardrobe
I have a lot more than some people
Abd yet
I still want to escape
Switch off
Opt out
Check off the planet 
And I do so every chance I get
I don't understand it at all

I know that I don't deal with my feelings very well 
And my head isn't always a nice place to be
I think my base level mood 
Is lower than most people
In that my usual mood tends to be on the low side 
I have a perpensity to be negative
My thoughts race
I would never speak to another person the way I talk to myself 
I am horrible to myself
My thoughts run around my head on a loop
And I go from zero to suicidal in seconds 
So the temptation to medicate myself and my feelings is strong 

I know I need to sort out my meds before it is reduced even more
I need to get stable
And to do that I need to cooperate with my doctor and Breda 
It's just so hard to tell them
But I know I have to

I feel like I have made a real mess of things recently
I need to get back on track
Before it all falls down around me 
Because I don't know how much more I can take 
Before I snap 


Monday, 25 May 2015

Tell me why I don't like Mondays

Title taken from the popular Boom Town Rats song
In fact I do like Mondays 
It may even be my favourite day of the week
Let me explain
As you know
Monday is doctor day
Which means I've had no meds since Saturday 
As greedy guts addict over here overused on a couple of occasions
Sunday is a long day with no meds
No little sleeps to break up the day
No chance to opt out 
Or check off the planet for a while
By Monday morning
I can feel the withdrawal setting in
I can feel it in my bones
The yawning starts 
Why it always starts with yawning I do not know
There must be a reason 
But I don't know what it is
Then my nose and eyes start to run 
Usually I have my meds before it gets any worse
God forbid would it get any worse

So I made my way in the my doctor today
My usual doctor is away for a couple of weeks
So I got to see Nice Woman Doctor
Who I really like
She calls me in to her room
Big smile on her face
I settle on the seat
She tells me I look well
I balk at hearing this
As I always do
But manners prevail 
And I smile and thank her
She asks me how life is
The first thing that pops in to my head is the incident last Thursday
But I decide that she doesn't need to know that
And I tell her life is good
That I am starting a course in september
She asks me if its good to have my sister home
She knows my sister as she sees her too
I tell her it is 
Which is true
She also asks me if I am still blogging
I tell her I am 
Touched that she remembered 
She carefully writes my scripts
I thank her 
And leave

I go and collect my meds
Then go to meet my mum who is walking the dogs
I get to my car
And take my daily dose
Determined to get back on track
And take them properly
I know I need to get this under control
I have spoken to Mary about it in the past
And she has told my doctor
Who then put me on daily dispensing
That works 
As I have no temptation in the house
So when I have a weak moment
There are no meds to take
But he usually only leaves me on DD for a couple of weeks
And then it's back to normal
Getting weekly dispensing

I know I need to get this under control
Especially if I want to start my course
And stay clean and sober
As right now
I don't really think I can claim I am clean and sober 
Being clean sober means not using mind altering substances 
Living in reality
Living life on life's terms
Not using meds or dugs to escape feelings 
Being compos  mentis 
And I am definitely not doing that

In my defence 
These meds are prescribed
And I am supposed to take them
But in reality I am not supposed to take a double or triple dose
Hell even a single dose is too much sometimes 
It does not a clean and sober life make

I've stopped telling the professionals that I abuse my meds
I don't really see the point anymore
I talk about it at meetings from time to time
But in reality
I don't know if I want to stop

Despite being ok with the way things are
I have taken steps to help myself
Last week I called in to my local dog kennels and groomers
To see if they had any work going for the summer
Disappointingly they couldn't take me on due to high insurance costs
So I tried the pizzeria I used to work in
He said he would ring me if anything came up
And he seemed glad that I called in
So hopefully that will work out
think having a bit more structure in my day will help with the addiction side of things
At least I hope it will

Time is going so fast at the moment
The weeks just seem to fly by
As does my life 
If I am not careful 
I will wake up an old woman
And my life will be over 
I guess I need to find a passion
Outside of writing and blogging
I don't have a lot of hobbies
But I am so grateful to have blogging in my life
Three years later and I enjoy it more than ever 
I write every day
It may not always be riveting stuff
But it's part of my daily routine
Blogging has saved my life 
And my sanity over and over again
It's been such a force for good in my life 
I don't know where I would be without it
and you special ladies
So thank you for that

I was wondering about you
How long have you been blogging?
Why did you start?
How does it benefit you?

Sunday, 24 May 2015

Serenity

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I can not change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.

Every time I begin to lose my head
Every time I think I am going to crack up
Everytime I think I can't stand being in my own head
Or my own body
I stop
Deep breathes
Gather my thoughts 
And say this prayer
It gives me a couple of seconds to regroup
To collect my thoughts 
And remind myself of these words

I don't know where I would be without my supports 
My family 
My friends 
My meetings 
My higher power 
My dogs 
Mary
My doctor
Breda
You lovely ladies
It's a collective effort
Everyone does their bit to help
I know that I can't do this alone

What helps you get through the day?

Saturday, 23 May 2015

The ugly truth

I tried writing a post about something else earlier
But 
In truth 
My thoughts are still consumed with what happened on Thursday 
I still can't quite believe that it happened 
And how close I came to really getting in to trouble with the law
It still feels like a bad dream
Like I'm going to wake up any minute now
But unfortunately 
It did happen
And there's nothing I can do to change that

I had been in hiding since Thursday
Only venturing out to go to my meetings
But today
I decided to bite the bullet
And head in to the town where it happened 
I shit you not
I was so nervous
Every person I passed
I wondered if they knew what I had done 
I was paranoid to the hilt 
Thinking I could hear whispers of 

There she is 
That's her 
That's the girl that was caught shoplifting

But I really wanted to face my demons
And I brought my dogs for their usual hour long walk
I even went in to the shop where the shop owner stopped me
No comments were passed 
But then it was weekend staff that were on
And the only thing the shop assistant said to me was asking me if I'd been away as I had a great colour

I left the shop
And decided to go to the leisure centre to use the sun bed
That meant that I had to walk through the hotel that was right beside the shop where it happened 
I walked quickly
Wanting to get in and out as fast as possible
My heart started to thump when I saw a girl with blonde hair exit the hotel
For a second I was sure it was her
But when I looked closer 
It wasn't her
I breathed a sigh of relief
And continued in to the hotel 

It sucks that I can't go in to that shop anymore
As it was my favourite shop
And I buy things in there quite often
But now I am effectively barred
And that is not a nice feeling

As I wrote yesterday
I had written the shop owner a letter
I haven't sent it in to the shop yet
As I think I am going to re write it
To explain in a bit more detail

As you know 
I have struggled massively with shoplifting over the years
It's tied up in my ED 
First it was food
Then clothes and other items 
In all the years I was doing it
I was never once caught
Up until now that is

I remember being in treatment
And other girls talking about their shoplifting 
I was so glad that I wasn't the only one
As I had come to the conclusion that I was a bad person
Who did bad things

I also remember being at a meeting a long time ago
A woman shared that she had been caught shoplifting the previous day
And was feeling really ashamed
The girl who shared after her told her that it was a blessing in disguise
Because now she would never do that again
It's a lesson hard learned 

I have well and truly learned my lesson
I was shopping today
And sometimes I would skip something in to my bag
Well not today
And never again
I will never forget that feeling of someone tipping me on the back and saying 'Excuse me, did you take something?'
I never want to go through that again

I still don't know the damage I've done
I don't know how many people that girl has told 
I don't know how blackened my name is
I guess time will tell

Even though I feel huge shame about what I did
There was never a question in my mind that I would share this experience with my readers
My blog is all about telling the ugly truth of what it's like to live with an ED and addiction
And everything that goes with that
It was easy writing that post on Thursday
I mean who wants to admit that they were caught stealing?
I didn't go it so it would make for interesting reading 
I didn't do it because I have no money
I did it because part of me is still very unwell
Because my thinking and behaviours can still be very disordered 
I know I have a long way to go
And a lot of work still to do 
I am a flawed individual
Very flawed 
I make mistakes on a daily basis 
I fuck up regularly 
But I know that
Deep down
In my heart
And in my soul 
That I am not a bad person 
And it's not my intention to hurt anyone
I would much rather hurt myself that anyone else
I try to be a good person 
I really do
I love my family and friends to pieces
Am fiercely loyal
And would do anything for them
However sometimes
Against my better judgement 
I do stupid things
Really stupid things
I guess the trick is to learn from these mistakes
Move on
And not spend the rest of my natural life beating myself up
Easier said than done
But it must be done
Or else guilt and shame will fester and eat me up

So that's what I will do 
I will take the learning
And never repeat that mistake again
In fact
It is much easier to be honest
To live an honest life
Being untrue or deceitful is hard work
And you're always looking over your shoulder
Hoping and praying you won't be caught
It's no life really

As I am shown time and time again
I have the most amazing people around me
My family 
My friends
My dogs
And all my beautiful ladies here
Who never fail to rally around when times aw tough
Thank you for that
It means more than you will ever know
Thank you

All my love,

Ruby x

FB

I'm not hugely technically minded
I know enough to get by
But there is awful lot that I don't know
When I first started blogging
It took me quite a while to get used to blogger
A lot of it was trial and error
When I was blogging over on Wordpress
I never quite got used to the dashboard 
And so came back to blogger
To and then she disappeared
Like I always do
As this blog feels like home 

Apart from my blog
I don't really use social media
No Tumblr
No Instagram
No Twitter
Not even Facebook
I do have a FB account
But I think I might have posted twice in my whole life
And I do use it to message people
Or sometimes I have a scroll through my news feed
Sometimes there is something funny or inspiring
But most of the time it's random stuff that people post
I guess I use my blog to let people know what is going on my life

Looking at FB has the power to depress me
Sometimes it seems that everyone is leading this amazing adventure of a life
Photos of everyone dressed up 
Drinks in hand
Smiles on faces
Or photos of their little ones doing something super cute
Couples walking hand in hand on the beach
Someone getting married
Someone else on holiday in Italy
Facebook would have me believe that everyone is living life to the Pepsi Max
A stark reminder that I am not
So that's the main reason I avoid FB

As you know 
I blog everyday
I like to write everyday 
As it helps give my day some structure
I know it's not always riveting stuff
But there is always some little drama playing out

I was wondering about you
Do you use social media?
Which ones do you use and why?
Is there a reason you do/don't use it?

Friday, 22 May 2015

The calm after the storm

Yesterday is over
Thank God that yesterday is over 
It is no longer the day that I was caught shoplifting
I swear it was like a nightmare
I kept waiting to wake
And realise that it was all a bad dream
I often have dreams like that 
That I used
Or drank
Or smoked
And then woke up to sweet relief that it was all a dream
But this wasn't a dream 
It was real 
I made the choice to take that top
And walk out of that shop
I have no excuse
No plausible reason for doing this
I did it because I wanted the top
It was as simple and as stupid as that

I went to two meetings yesterday
The first was an AA meeting
I wasn't going to say anything at the meeting 
But it was a small one so I decided to share
I got very upset while speaking
As the weight of what had happened sat on my shoulders
Everyone was great
Told me not to best myself on
To learn from this and move on
The general consensus was that no one is a saint
And we all have moments of madness and do stupid things 
One of the women even offered me some money to put in a card to give to the shop owner
It was sweet of her
But I politely declined 
This was my mess to sort out

I returned home
Where my sister said that she needed to talk to me
I thought she had read yesterday's post
And that she knew
So I kind of put my foot in it
Because she hadn't
She had quite a bad reaction to it
First she got angry
And said some horrible things
But then that anger turned into disbelief and sadness
She just couldn't understand why I had done it
Either can I 
I don't blame her though
I seem to fuck up time and time again

I went to another meeting last night
Again it was a small meeting 
So I felt comfortable sharing
Some people there suggested I write a letter of apology
So that's what I did when I got home
I write a short note
Expressing my regret
And asked if there was anything I could do to make amends 
As I am willing to do that 
This shop was not some big chain store
It's a small family run business
Who are probably struggling as it is without the likes of me stealing their goods
So I would really jump at the chance of atonement 

But as bad as yesterday was 
I do realise that it could have been a whole lot worse 
That girl could have called the cops 
In fact I am wondering why she didn't
She was well within her rights to
When we were walking up to the shop
She seemed to calm down a lot
And was asking me question
I said as little as possible
Just apologising when I felt it was appropriate
I am so grateful to that girl for letting me go
I could be sitting in a police cell right now
And that would be an utter disaster 
Imagine if I had had to call my family from a cop station
And tel them that I had been arrested
It doesn't bear thinking about

So I guess the best thing to do
Is to take the learning out of this
And the lesson is well and truly learnt
I won't be be shoplifting again 
And if that is the only positive to come out of this 
Then maybe it was a blessing in disguise






Wednesday, 20 May 2015

What I eat

Contrary to popular belief
People with eating disorders do like food
Speaking only for myself
I love food
I mean really love it
God help the person that comes between me and my food
I tend to go through phases of eating a certain food
I become slightly obsessed with said food
And eat it until I move on to the next obsession
At the moment 
My foods are salt and vinegar Hunky Dory chips
And Nestle Milkybars
I literally eat them all day long
I go through five family size Milkybars a day
And two family size packs of chips
And I would eat more if there was more
But I try on out a limit on it

I don't eat breakfast 
And if I do 
It's a few squares of chocolate
I don't really eat lunch either
Preferring to snack on my favourite foods
I do eat dinner though
I love dinner 
Today I am making beef stew
It's only 11am 
And I am already looking forward to it
I can get slightly obsessed over my dinner too
And like to know way in advance what I am having
So I tend to drive my family nuts 
Asking them what is for dinner like two days in advance 

I don't profess to be the healthiest person in the world
And I am no poster girl for recovery
You are probably wondering how I am not 300 pounds if I eat all that junk food
Well
The simple answer to that
Is that not everything that goes down stays down
Yes
I admit it
I do purge still
In fact it never went away
And I'm not sure if it ever will

As you know up until about a year ago
I was binging and purging up to 20 times a day
It was off the scale 
Yes my bulimia had improved a lot
But I still purge 2-5 times a day
Which by anyone's standards is still a lot 
But for me it's progress
The thing is
I am starting to wonder if this is as good as it gets for me?
Is this recovery?
Am I destined to always have my ED in my life?
Managing it but never quite getting on top of it?
I mean 
I am the best I've been in a long time 
Eating disorder wise
But I know things could be a lot better
The way things are
I have one foot in my ED
And one foot in recovery 
Stuck somewhere in the middle
Not committing to either one

And the other thing is 
I'm not sure if I want to leg go completely of my ED
I mean
I am quite content the way things are
But maybe I am fooling myself 
I don't quite know

I was sharing at a meeting the other day
How my base mood level is lower than average
In that my everyday mood is lower than the average person 
My tendency is to be negative
Think negatively 
I've a tendency to be maudlin and morose 
I'm not a naturally happy or optimistic person 
I'm not happy all the time
I get glimpses of it from time to time
But it is not a constant thing 
So feeling the way I am now is good
For me

I'm seeing Mary tomorrow
So I will talk to her about this 
Although I know what she will say
That full and complete recovery is possible
And that I can live a life without my ED
I'm not convinced 
But I won't rule it out






I was wondering about you
Do you consider yourself to be in recovery?
What does recovery mean to you?
Do you think that complete recovery is possible?
I'd love to know ....

Monday, 18 May 2015

The Plumber

Some of you noticed that I mentioned a new Boy in my last post
So I guess I better explain

Just so you know
The new boy 
Who from here on in shall be known as The Plumber
Has absolutely nothing to do The Boy
Who is no longer part of my life

As you know
I have a neighbour who I do little jobs for
I'm over in her house a few times a week
A couple of months ago 
She told me about her plumber
And that he was a lovely guy
And very attractive
I hadn't seen him
So I paid little attention to it
But then last week
He was back at my neighbours house
Honey and Lea were out in the garden
Barking their heads off
So I went out to see what the commotion was
It was The Plumber
I apologised to him
And brought the dogs in
He said not to worry
I didn't get a proper look at him
But I did notice that he was tall and well built with dark hair
I went back inside
And didn't give it another thought

The following morning
I was over in my neighbours house
Chatting to my neighbour
She asked me if I had seen The plumber 
I said I'd had a quick look at him
My neighbour had a mischievous look on her face
As she told me that she had done a little investigation work
She proceeded to tell me that she had asked this guy was married
He said he wasn't 
Or if he has a girlfriend 
He hasn't 
He then asked her what was with all the questions
She told him that she was asking for a 'friend'
I was mortified that she had done this
She then told me that The Plumber said to her that he is approachable
What does that mean people????

My neighbour was having a great laugh to herself telling me all of this
She thought herself especially funny when she told me that he might let me 'hold his pliers'
I want to say I was shocked when she said this 
But I wasn't 
She is always up to mischief

I left my neighbours
And headed home
Where I told my mum and sister what had happened
They thought it was hilarious
And got great mileage out of it slagging me off
Telling me that he can 'fix my pipes' and the like ........
Now everytime I put nice clothes on
Or put make up on
They're all 'Is that for the Plumbr?'
I wish I'd kept my mouth shut

Anyway
That's the story behind that
I'm not really looking for love
If it happens
Well and good
But I  happy enough the way things are
I mean I haven't even had a proper look at this guy
I wouldn't be able to pick him out in a line up
I guess it's of my neighbour
But I don't know if she's doing it for her own amuse  
Or if she really is trying to set me up
I am going to be so embarrassed if I see this guy again
As I'm pretty sure he will figure out who my neighbour was talking about

It's been so long since I had a boyfriend
I mean it's almost been a decade since I was in a relationship
I guess I've been too busy trying to kill myself
I forget what it's like to be someone's girlfriend

I was speaking with my sister the other day
She is a seriel monogomoust
Bouncing from relationship to relationship
She tells me that she doesn't like being alone
Where as I don't mind it so much
I mean I can't imagine sharing a bed with someone 
Having to turn off the light when they want to
Having them hog the duvet
I have a double bed
And I like to sleep diagonally across it
So there's not much room for anyone else
I suppose it's been so long since I've shared my life with someone
And you don't miss what you don't have

But I will keep my eye out for The Plumber.....

Today

Wearing: Blue jeans, blue and white hoody, Roxy high tops

Weighing: not weighing any more

Drinking: Hot sweet tea

Eating: Hunky Dory salt and vinegar crisps

Listening to: Aluna George

Going to: See my doctor

Watching: Undercover Boss

Talking about: Recovery and what else I can do to help myself get better

Feeling: Hopeful, optimistic

Taking: Methadone, Prozac, Olanzapibe, Mirtazapine

Wearing: New glasses

Thinking about: A certain boy (Not The Boy)

Going to: Walk my dogs 

Hoping: To get to a meeting later

Loving: Feeling free from the compulsion to use

Worrying about: What my weight is

Letting go of: Anxiety by telling myself that everything is exactly as it should be

Realising that: I am a good person

Afraid that: My life will never amount to anything

Reading: shopaholic to the stars by Sophie Kinsella

Wearing my hair: In a top knot 

Wondering: If I will ever meet someone 

What are you up to today?

Sunday, 17 May 2015

It's not paranoia if they're really out to get you

Over the last couple of months
My world has got a lot bigger and broader 
Rewind 18 months and I am just out of treatment
Feeling afraid
Hopeless
And utterly distraught
Not knowing where to turn
So I chose the only option I had left 
Death
And tried to overdose on my meds
Thankfully I didn't die
Although at the time I was so angry to wake up
Mary intervened when I told her the following week
She really jumped in to action
I saw my doctor and my psychiatrists 
My meds were changed
Olanzapine (anti anxiety) was increased
And another anti depressant was introduced (Prozac)
Then it was a waiting game
To see if the change in meds would work
To see how long I could hold on before losing my shit and my mind again

I can't pinpoint exactly when it happened 
I know it was around April last year 
My mood began to lift
In a really noticeable way
My anxiety lessened
And when I woke up in the morning
I wasn't dreading the day ahead
I can remember standing in the shower on day
And feeling bigger
I stood on the scales
And I had begun to gain weight
At first it was soul destroying 
I couldn't stand myself
But then I began to see the benefits of weight gain
Feeling better
More clear minded
Happier
More energetic
Granted 
My weight increased to a point where I was comfortable 
To about 138 pounds 
It didn't suit me
And I continued to gain weight after I gave up smoking
And then
Suddenly 
Just as quickly as I gained the weight 
I began to lose it again
And my weight is now stable at 117-120 pounds
I can just about live with that

So much has happened in the last year
I got my teeth done
I gave  up smoking 
I had my toes done
I got glasses
But I still felt like something was missing
I wasn't feeling great around Christmas time
And soon after
I relapsed on drugs
That lasted about five weeks
I hurt many people
Including myself
Lost some people for good 
Almost lost my family
It was an horrific time
There was such a horrible atmosphere at home
I had to do something to get back on track
So I went back to meetings
And began seeing an addiction counsellor
And so my cocooned little world began to expand
I had a lot of help
My long suffering family
My best friend Marie
And all the professionals that I see
It is a joint effort
And everyone plays a crucial part

I am now meeting and seeing a lot of people
And this causes me massive anxiety
My confidence has taken such a battering recently 
And my self esteem is on the floor 
I am still trying to like myself
Never mind love myself
And I always presume that people don't like me
My mother and sister tell me that I am paranoid
But I'm not convinced 
I get a notion in my head
That someone doesn't like me
And then I look for evidence to support this
And disregard any evidence that they do like me
I've been seeing this girl around
She is a friend of Marie's
I was convinced that this girl didn't like me
And seeing her was becoming an ordeal
Then one day Marie told me that this girl was asking after me
I was really surprised
And then she sent me a friend request on Facebook
I was even more surprised
It really meant a lot 
Like she was asking me to be her friend
And letting me know that she likes me
It's the little things people

I guess it's because I don't like myself very much
That I can't understand why anyone else would like
I really feel that bad about myself

Yesterday I got a text from another girl 
Inviting me to a meal out with the NA crowd 
To celebrate a members ten year clean time
Again I was really surprised that I was invited
That it even occurred to this girl to include me 
It's a sad situation that I feel this low about myself 
But I do
I've spoken to Mary about this
And she assures me that if I keep doing what I'm doing
Then my confidence and self esteem will improve
I sincerely hope it does
Because it's just horrible feeling this way
To be so hyper sensitive
And to hate on myself so much

And the thing is
I think it takes quite a lot for me not to like someone
I get on with most people
And I love meeting new people
And making new friends
But my paranoia gets in the way of forming long lasting friendships
I always feel like I say the wrong thing
Or put my foot in it
And then spend weeks beating myself up about it
I bully myself in a lot of ways

Even here on blogger
I am always blown away by the kind an thoughtful comments that people write here every single day
The friends that I have made here mean so much to me
Do much more than you will ever know
I truly value and treasure each and everyone of you
And to be welcomed in to this community with open arms has warned my heart over and over again

This is the reason that I used drugs 
And my ED
Because I couldn't stand myself
Because I hated the person I was
Because I felt useless and hopeless
Because I had zero confidence 
And not an iota of self belief 
So trying to navigate through life without these crutches is not an easy task
I know have to find new and healthy ways of coping 
By attending meetings
Talking to friends who are in recovery
By being gentle with myself
And bring kind to myself
It's all so new
But I am doing my best to keep my mind and body relatively well

I've had a couple of comments recently
That I look like I am losing weight again
But in fact my weight is more stable than its been in years
I don't think I am losing weight
I think it's just that my weight is settling
And it's only now becoming noticeable 

In spite of the way I am feeling
I will plough on
I'm not about to give up
On you or myself
I have way too much to lose now
I am hoping and praying
That my perception of myself will improve
It sure as hell can't get any worse
Do I will continue to fight 
To fight for a better life
For peace of mind
For a happy mind and body
I'll do it for my family 
For Honey and Lea
Who rely on me so much
And who I refuse to let down 
And for myself 
There is just no other option right now

I was wondering about you
Have you ever suffered with a lack of confidence?
How did you deal with it?
What helped you find your confidence?
Do you ever experience paranoia? 
What helped you overcome this?
Do let me know if you have any tips or advice in this regard

Saturday, 16 May 2015

Should have gone to spec savers.....

And in fact I did

Rewind to Wednesday
I finally made an appointment to get my eyes tested
After much time straining to see things that are far away
Like my teeth
My eyes went without care or attention for most of my 33 years
So during the week
I made my way to spec savers with my sister
And had the long overdue test

As it turned out
I do need glasses 
Long sighted I think they call it
So I was told to go and pick frames
And my glasses would be ready Saturday 

It didn't take me long to pick frames
Anyone who knows me knows that I am a quick shopper
Get in and get out as fast as possible
That's my motto

Anyway
Here they are....






Friday, 15 May 2015

Psych central

I recieved an email last week
From John from the site psych central.com
John informed me that this blog had been chosen as one of the top 10 eating disorder blogs of the year
I was thrilled to get this news
As sometimes I wonder about my blog
And if it's doing any good to help the plight of the eating disordered person

I started writing my blog for me
But I continue to write it for you
I try to write as honestly and as openly as I can
To speak the truth about life with a mental illness
Of course my blog benefits me
And I would write whether one person reads or 1000 people read
But I also write in the hope that my blog helps others
That it contributes to this community
And goes some way to fighting the war against this illness

If you want to check out the top 10 blogs
Here is the link

Thursday, 14 May 2015

Once bitten, twice shy....

As you know
I am back going to meetings
After years of avoiding them
And years of being in and out of the rooms
Meetings are great
There is something magical about gathering together with a group of like minded people
All striving for the same goal
All fighting for sobriety
There are some people in the rooms with fantastic recovery
But unfortunately there are also some very unwell people there too
The thing with NA or AA is that they are completely open
Anyone can walk in
Sit down
Listen to others share
And even share themselves
So there are people from every walk of life
Poor people 
Rich people 
People who are still using or drinking
People who want to get well
People who don't 
People who go to meetings just to get the courts or family off their back
Of course there are people who are there to get well
But some people do have a hidden agenda

It's not uncommon for people to swap phone numbers at meetings
It's good to have a network of people who you can call when times are tough
So recently I have swapped numbers with quite a few people
And thought nothing off
I was a bit wary about giving my number to two men in particular
But they asked
And I am too polite to say no
But boy am I sorry 

These two men are at almost every meeting I go to
And from what I can tell
They live in their own little worlds 
One of the men rings me quite a lot
The first few times I answered
But have now stopped
As when I am talking to him
It's very hard to get away from him
Although I must admit
Sometimes he can be very nice
Like the day he rang me up to let me know that 'someone cares'
And last night he left a message on my voice mail telling me that he 'appreciates me being on the planet' 
And that I contribute to his life
That's all fine and dandy
But he can also be very inappropriate
Like when he asked me about his girlfriend
Who is 53 
And thinks she might pregnant????
Then asking me if it's common to want sex more when you are pregnant 
I mean that is just going too far in my opinion
He seems to have no clue that he is being really inappropriate
This guy is not well
From taking too many drugs
He is extremely paranoid 
And quite clingy
He's a nice guy and all
But he's someone that I don't really want to engage with a lot
Maybe that's mean
But I have to look after myself 
And my sobriety
I know that he has upset a lot of members of AA
And a lot of people don't have any time for him 
So I guess if I stop answering his calls
He will stop ringing me

The other guy who I gave my number too is also a grade A head the ball
At first
He was sending me innocent texts
Just asking how I am and such
I answered 
But did not get in to a conversation with him
Then a couple of days ago
He texted me to say that he was full of guilt and shame after lusting after women
And went on to talk about Internet porn and the like
This is the same guy who accosted me at my first meeting 
And described how he couldn't stop master bating 
I mean hello?
How inappropriate and creepy is that?
Very if you ask me

They say at meetings
That you should stick with the winners
In other words stay around the people who are well
And who have good recovery 
That makes sense
And I do engage with these people
But others who are not recovery orientated are hard to avoid
And me being me
I find it really difficult to be assertive

I was speaking to Breda about this on Tuesday
She gave me some advice on how to deal with these people
And also made the point that I have a warm personality 
And others might think I am an easy target 
And take advantage of me
This also makes sense to me
If I had any sort of a backbone
I would have told these  guys that their behaviour was out of order
 And so inappropriate 
But I just don't have the confidence to do that 
Although I'm going to have to set these guys straight 
And make clear boundaries
Because right now people are walking all over me
And I don't like it

I guess this is something that I can practise
And as my self esteem grows 
Do will my confidence 
And belief in myself

I was wondering about you
Are you confident, assertive and able to stand up for yourself?
What do you think I should do about this situation?

Tuesday, 12 May 2015

#Break The Stigma

I was contacted by Megan from Northwestern University
Megan and her colleagues launched the Break The Stigma campaign this week
To raise awareness around mental health issues 
And the stigmas attached to them
So this post is about how I break the stigma
I guess I am part of a community of bloggers
That blog honestly and openly about how our mental health issues affect us
In my case it is anorexia, bulimia, depression and anxiety and addiction
My goal from the start was to tell the truth about what it's really like to live with these conditions
I think stigmas stem from a lack of education around mental health
And people fear what they don't understand 
Depression and suicide are a huge problem in my country
And around the world 
Through my blog
I hope that people will get an insight in to what these issues are really about
That there is no need to be afraid 
Knowledge is power
I hope that through this campaign
And the hard work of advocates all around the world
We can put an end to the negative stigmas that persist




How do you break the stigma?

Monday, 11 May 2015

'See you on Friday'

It was this morning
Doctor day as usual
I was in and out quickly
As I had the first appointment
Quick chat with my doctor
Then collected my meds
And headed down to the beach to meet my sister who was walking the dogs
We went to the supermarket
And bought soda bread Apple turnovers
Before driving home

I changed into a comfortable tracksuit
I had already taken my meds in the car on the way home
 I'm so used to taking my methadone 
That I can measure it in swigs from the bottle
And don't need to measure it anymore
I gave the dogs a treat before their nap
I made a cup of tea for me and my sister
She had her apple turnover
I decided to keep move until later 
I was taking my tea in to the living room to go and blog
When my sister said to me
'See you on Friday'
I stopped and looked at her
I wasn't sure what she meant
My mum laughed
But I wasn't getting the joke
I asked her what she meant
She gave me a knowing look
Then I realised
'Do you think I'll be out of it until Friday?' I asked her
She nodded 
I looked at my mum again
'Do you think that too?'
'Well in my experience you will be out of it until at least Thursday' she replied
I was a bit taken a back 
But I continued on my way in to the living room
I know they were making a joke
But I think there is truth in jest

It's true
On Mondays I am not very present
I take my meds as prescribed on a Monday
But I call Monday my 'Day off life'
As I usually sleep for most of Monday 

I can't lie
During the week 
I do misuse my meds 
To get out of my own head 
To escape 
To sleep
To opt out 
I know this is not good
And in a lot of ways 
I might as well be using 
As I am taking mind altering substances
I try to keep myself in a state where I can fall asleep at any time
So any time of the day
I can check off the planet
If I am bored 
If I am lonely
Or sad
Or afraid 
I can just close my eyes 
And drift away

I am on five different medications
Including the controlled substance methadone
I'm also on two anti depressants 
And two anti anxiety meds
They have accumulated over the years
It seems every time I hit a crisis
The powers that be increase my meds
If I am completely honest
Meds are not the answer
They are a quick fix
But it's like putting a bandage on a broken leg
It might ease the pain
But it won't cure it at all

I can remember when I was about 12
I complained to my mum that I couldn't sleep 
She brought me to the doctor
And I can distinctly remember hoping that the doctor would put me on sleeping tablets
At 12 years old
Of course he didn't
And I was bitterly disappointed

Since then
I've always looked to pills to cure my ills
And of course this type of thinking contributed to my becoming addicted to drugs 
Then while hospitalised over the years
I can remember looking at other patients collecting their sleeping tablets
And being really jealous
Again
I complained to the doctors that couldn't sleep
And I was promptly put on a sleeper
No questions asked 

I'm not quite sure why I find reality and life so difficult 
I find the days really long 
And tedious 
And boring 
I do have something on every day
And I try and stick to a routine 
But there are many hours to kill
And I tend to do that by knocking myself out and sleeping
Come September
I am starting a part time course
So I really want to get on top of this before then
And also this summer
I am going to ask my local dog kennels 
If I can go out a couple of days a week
I think that would be good for me
And will occupy my days

The other reason I want to escape
Is my thinking
My thinking exhausts me
The negativity over over analysing can be relentless 
I hate it so much
And so the option to escape becomes increasingly attractive
Meetings help with this 
But only to a point
Escaping doesn't solve the problem 
It just postpones it
The. Minute my meds west off
It's back to the merry-go-round of negative thinking

I know that I need to get on top of this 
If I want to move forward in my recovery 
If I want a life
A job
A family 
I need to be 100% sober
It's not easy
But it has to be done if I want any semblance of a normal life
Drugs are a dead end 
The only result of taking drugs are jails, institutions and death
I don't want any of those 
Not at all
I need to get my shit together
Ands the sooner the better