Saturday, 30 June 2012


I told Mother about the shoplifting
We were doing the cliff walk and I hadn't planned to tell her then (thinking about it, it was a dangerous place to tell her lol)
But I suddenly found a bit of courage from somewhere and decided to confess
'Mam, I've something else to tell you'
'Oh God what?'
'Mary thinks it's a good idea to tell you so I'm just going to say it'
At this point I decided to see if she knew already
'Have you any idea what I'm going to say?'
'Is it something you used to do when you were on drugs?'
I knew then she knew but I just couldn't find the words, shame washed over me
'You say it'
'No you say it'
She finally said 'Is it shoplifting?'
'Oh Ruby'
'I haven't done it in nearly 2 weeks and I really want to stop'
'What are you taking?'

The conversation didn't last too long and I tried to convey that I was determined to stop but she knows by now that words are cheap
She pointed out that I could ruin my and destroy my reputation in our community
I know this
I haven't shoplifted in almost 2 weeks now and the truth is I used to be a lot worse
When I first moved here I was fresh out of heroin addiction
I stole everyday
My favourite haunt was the chemist where I collected my methadone
It was like a pick n mix
I stole everything from makeup to jewellry to anything and everything
I still have 2 boxes full of makeup and 2 bags of jewellry in my bedroom
Most of which has never been used
I started to feel guilty because the chemist was so nice to me, he always took the time to ask me how I was doing and was very encouraging
Over the next 5 years I would tell him about the highs and lows of recovery
Then one day a staff member told me the chemist wasn't coming back
I was crushed
I wanted to thank him so I wrote him a card and left it in the chemist for them to post
Then I found out he had been fired, the way I heard it he had been 'too friendly' to a female customer
To be honest I don't believe this, it's only hearsay anyway
But he was fired for something, I don't know what
The chemist that replaced him wasn't half as nice
I think it's the chemists loss because he was a great chemist, caring but not patronising
I started shoplifting there again
Over time I have gradually realised how stupid it is to steal from there
They are one of only 2 chemists in the town and I don't fancy having to go to the other one
Overall they are lovely to me in my chemist and I always have a chat with the girls
I often wonder if they ever knew
They could well have
So I've stopped taking from there, it's plain stupid
I remember once feeling so guilty for taking something that I was very close to going back and confessing but someone talked me out of it

So hopefully this is the end of my shoplifting career
Time to get honest
Quit while I'm ahead

I got a new camera yesterday (from said chemist and yes I paid for it) so I'll be able to add more photos from now on

Have a happy Saturday x

Friday, 29 June 2012


Thanks for all the great feedback on'are we all addicts?'
It was a good documentary and really got me thinking
It reminded me of the one and only time I've used legal highs
Let me share it with you

It was a perfectly normal Saturday afternoon, drugs were the furthest thing from my mind and I was heading to my regular 1pm NA meeting
It was a small meeting only 3 of us when an extremely thin girl walked in
She was a bit flustered and when she sat down and looked into her eyes I could tell she was on something but I wasn't sure what
She spoke but didn't make a lot of sense, cementing my impression that she was a bit out of it
The meeting finished up and I ended up sharing a smoke with her out the back
She confessed that she was using, something called 'ivory'
She explained it was a legal high and she bought it in a shop (called head shops here) just down the street
I was intrigued as I had no experience with legal highs as they were new on the scene
She spoke at length and without being aware of it (or maybe I was) I found out exactly how to obtain this 'ivory'
She also admitted that she had an eating disorder and that the drug kept her weight down
Well that was it for me, I was already getting directions to the shop and making my excuses to leave
I must add this girls life was a mess, she looked like hell, owed a lot of money and was at the meeting to get help
Of course the addict/anorexic in me ignored this and only saw what I wanted to see, a way to stay skinny with the bonus of a buzz
I left with butterflies in my tummy, the way I always feel when I know I'm about to use
I could not get over how easy it was to buy this drug
It was as simple as buying sweets
I inspected the packet and it was advertised as 'bath salts' and 'not fit for human consumption'
This was how it was legal, stating this meant they fell into a loop hole in the law
I rushed home
My family were going out, perfect
I can't snort so I wrapped half the packet in tissue and swallowed  
I waited and waited and as I waited the guilt set in
What the hell was I doing?
I decided nothing was happening and it really was bath salts
I rang an NA friend to confess all
I had got to the point where I was chatting to the girl when I started to feel strange
My voice started to speed up and I felt like I was in fast forward
Shit, I couldn't confess now
I suddenly couldn't stop talking and kept her on the phone for ages
It was only when she hung up mid sentence and I realised I had been on the phone for 2 hours that I realised I was out of my fucking box
It was like cocaine multiplied by 100
My mother had come while I was on the phone
I tried to act normal but I couldn't stop talking, I literally couldn't control my mouth
She knew and I knew she knew but nothing was said
I spent the next 3 hours talking at her, complete shit of course
She escaped to bed
I tried to make tea but I couldn't get it together long enough to complete the action
I spent the night chain smoking and manically walking around my house
I started to worry when I hadn't come down by the next morning and I had nothing to speed (or slow down the process)
That evening still fucked up I confessed to my mother
I couldn't take the manic feeling anymore and retreated to my bed
I curled up  in the foetus position and prayed for the feeling to go away
The next few hours were hell as I slowly came down
I cried with relief when I finally felt normal
I was blown away how strong this 'legal high' was
I have never experienced anything like it
The feeling of not being able to string a thought together but yet not able to stop talking was terrifying
That was the last time I used ( apart from prescription drugs)
I'm kind of grateful that the experience was negative and I didn't want to use it again
It also solidified my opinion that man-made, synthetic substances are worse than natural drugs
A law has now been passed and the head shops have all been shut down
I've heard other horror stories about these drugs
God only knows what they're made of

Have you ever tried legal highs?
What was your experience?
Was it as scary as mine?

Thanks for reading and as always much love x

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Are we all addicts?

I watched a documentary last night called 'Are we all addicts?' presented by Cherry Healey on BBC3
She explored different different substances that people seem to get addicted to eg diet pills and slimming aids, legal highs, laughing gas (never heard of that one) and viagra
One girl she interviewed had a cupboard full of pills and potions to help her lose weight and she confessed to trying any diet going.
I could identify with this girl as she was a former dancer and had put on weight after she stopped dancing.
I remember when I  danced people were always saying 'be careful when you stop because your muscles turn to fat'
This was of course not true
The presenter of the show also spoke about her battle with weight and confessed to buying diet pills during the filming of the show.
I've bought diet pills twice and twice they didn't work but I can identify with wanting to believe that maybe this is magical answer to all my weight worries
Even though the diet pills didn't work I still have them in my room and every now and then I think 'maybe they'll work this time' and try them again
No doubt diet pills can be addictive but the feeling is also addictive, the feeling that this is the answer to all my problems
The feeling of starting a diet whether it works or not, the promise of happiness
When my eating disorder started it wasn't about weight, I never weighed myself and had no idea I was ill, I just knew that not eating made me feel better, not eating made me feel amazing
It was only when doctors started weighing me that I became aware of my weight and bmi
I learned what an anorexic was supposed to weigh and because I had been given this label I put pressure on myself to stay below that weight
Of course like a lot of people somewhere along the way I got the message that thin equals happiness and success
I know now that couldn't be further from the truth

I know myself that I can get addicted to something very easily, not just to the usual suspects like drugs and alcohol but to anything that gives me a good feeling
If I discover a food I like (at the moment it's twix bars) I eat it constantly and get anxious if I know there are none in the house so I stock up on them
I remember a few years ago my 'food' was drifter bars
I ate them like they were going out of fashion
And then they did
All of a sudden shops stopped stocking them
I remember one day being with my mother in the car and getting her to  drive me from shop to shop to shop looking for these bars.
I felt no different to when I craved heroin
I just had to have them and only them, no other chocolate bar would do
I remember around this time my boss gave me a birthday present of a bumper box of 48 drifters
You couldn't have given me a better gift
He knew me well
They were my drug
Same shit different substance

Television can be addictive to me
I could easily sit in front of the t.v for a day straight flicking from channel to channel watching endless
Sometimes I find it really difficult to tear myself away from it and will schedule my day around my favourite shows
I used to watch box sets in bed at night for hour,s I've stopped now as I wasn't getting any sleep
I've watched the whole boxset of The Sopranos back to back 3 times
Same with Mad Men
Same with Grey's Anatomy
Same with .........

The internet
I'm probably not alone with this one
Who hasn't looked up from their computer screen and realised that 4 hours have gone by since you last moved
I know I need to sign off when I'm holding my pee so I think I'm going to burst
I'm not a huge Facebook fan but endless google searches about anything and everything keep me plenty occupied
Hands up if you're addicted to the internet!

I don't drink coffee but I sure as hell am addicted to tea
I'm up about an hour and a half and  I'm on my third cup of tea
And I have special cups that I drink out of
I'm afraid to count how many I drink a day
I remember in treatment they took my big cup off me and replaced it with a small one
Ididn't see the big deal until they pointed out I was getting up 3 times a night to make tea
They locked the kitchen after that
I think the tea is a comfort thing, a nice warm drink that soothes the soul
That and the caffeine of course

Once I start I find it hard to stop
If I don't get 2-3 walks a day I freak out a bit
Having 2 dogs is my excuse and I'm sticking to it

The worst culprit of all
I hate that I love them
I wish I'd never started
My dad gave them up recently and made it look very easy
And yes I 'm afraid to give them up incase I gain weight

Oh I almost forgot methadone
I've been taking it for so long I forget to count it, 7 years now
I'm weaning off it slowly, it's taking years

On that note I was wondering about you
Are you addicted to anything be it drink, drugs or the weird and the wonderful
I'd love to know

Much love to you x

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

There's something about Mary

I'm just back from seeing Mary
I was actually looking forward to seeing her as it's been 2 weeks since my last appointment
I was excited to tell her of recent developments
I explained about my findings about the olanzapine and how I had stopped taking it
I told her how my mood had improved greatly and I had renewed energy and zest for life
She expressed concern at stopping it so abruptly and encouraged me to speak to my doctor
I told her I had experienced on withdrawel symptoms but said I would speak to him
It's true though, I have a sudden burst of energy and vigour, I feel alive for the first time in a long time
I'm feeling creative and have an urge to write
I've always loved reading and English at school but my brother is a writer and I thought it was his thing so didn't continue writing after I left school
But now and ever since starting this blog I feel the need to write more an more
So I'm going to
It was strange today, we didn't even mention food until about half way through the session
I told her that the binging and purging has decreased and my obsession with food has lessened somewhat
One of the side effects of olanzapine is hyperphagia (obsessive hunger) and I definitely think I experienced that. I was constantly hungry and was always thinking about what I would eat next
This feeling hasn't gone away but has certainly improved
Pursuing other interests has meant their is less space in my head to think about food
She asked about the shoplifting and I confessed that I hadn't managed to get it under control
She suggested that I tell my mother  so she could support me
Up until now I've been avoiding telling her, I just don't want to disappoint her but Mary reminded me that my mother said at our meeting that nothing could shock her anymore
And I do believe this, she has been surrounded by addicts her whole life, sometimes I wonder how she has stayed sane
I was wondering what you thought, do you think I should tell her?
I'd love to know what you think
Then it was time for the dreaded weigh in
It never gets any easier
I knew my weight already as I checked this morning
No change
To my horror her scale read that I had put on 2 kilo
My heart sank in to my stomach and my mood plummeted
Tears stung my eyes as I stared in disbelief
I couldn't understand it ]
When I told my mother afterwards she said 'that couldn't be right, you look like you've lost weight'
I should have asked Mary to recheck it but I just couldn't think straight
I immediately started plotting my next fast in my head
Mary tried to calm me, tried to reason with me
She said that the number didn't mean anything, it's just a number
It's doesn't change the person I am or the positive changes I've made
It doesn't mean I'm fat or ugly or lazy or worthless
Then why do I feel that way
Through tears I told her I felt my eating disorder was slipping away and that made me sad
She asked me to describe my eating disorder
I compared it to an abuser
It grooms you and seduces you and makes promises that you will be happy if you do what it says
Once it has lured you in it turns on you and shows it's true colours but you still return to the abuser again and again in the hope things will change
Even though it's killing me I am holding on for dear life
I'm not ready to let go yet
We wrapped up the session with writing down my next steps which are to tackle the purging and shoplifting
I like Mary, she has such great insight, not just about eating disorders but about life
I'm glad to have met her

Since I've started writing this blog almost 2 months ago I've met some wonderful people. Writing this blog has definitely helped me a lot. I follow a lot of different blogs and since I've started 2 bloggers have left the blogosphere and another 1 is taking a break from blogging.
The first blogger left to pursue recovery and the second blogger found that their blog was unhealthy and wanted to live life in the real world. I think the blogger who is taking a break is thinking about recovery.
This is bitter sweet for me as I miss these bloggers but I also totally understand their need to pull back. I don't consider myself to be pro-ana but don't judge those who are and often read pro-ana blogs. I can understand how blogging could become unhealthy or even become a trigger.
If someone is choosing recovery I see how they might like to make a clean break and start afresh.
I often find myself retreating into the internet rather than dealing with real life.
I probably have more contact with people on-line than I do with my real friends.
Although I miss these bloggers I am delighted to know that they are choosing recovery and I sincerely hope they find health and happiness.
With that said I wanted to ask you some questions,
Do you consider yourself pro-ana?
Do you consider this blog to be pro-ana?
What does pro-ana mean to you?
I don't consider myself to be pro-ana as I didn't choose this illness and I don't like to encourage or promote unhealthy weight loss
I'm very ambiguous about recovery but I am trying to get well
I want to want recovery if that makes sense
I'd love to know what you think

Anyway I digress
The much anticipated wedding is just over 4 weeks away
I have the strongest urge to lose as much weight as possible but I am trying to fight it
Part of me is looking forward to it but part of me is dreading it
I love Italian food and that's what scares me
What if I lose all control and become an out and out binge monster
Holidays make me anxious because I like to know in advance where and what I'll be eating
On the flip side I love travelling
I love everything about it, the packing, the airport (great place for people watching), new places, new people, the weather, everything (apart from the food)
I love the way you can be whoever you want to be and no one knows your history
You can start afresh every single day
Instead of Ruby the anorectic drug addict, I can be anyone I want
I can be me

Thanks for reading this and as always lots of love to you x

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Daddy's girl

I'm still reeling from my findings about the olanzapine
The more I think about it the more I can't believe I've been quietly taking it like a good little anorexic
I feel like I've been duped, had , done
I've not been taking it for 4 days now and the difference is remarkable
I have more energy and I don't feel like I want to sleep all day
My mood has improved and I'm just generally feeling better
I'm now only taking methadone and I'm happy enough with that
I wrote a few posts ago how a lad that had been in hospital with me had hung himself
This guy was super smart and he really gave the doctors a run for their money
He constantly questioned them and stood up for himself
I remember one day we were given a talk about the benefits of medication
He made mince meat of the speaker and shot her down
I remember being so pleased
I don't dispute that some medication is useful some of the time and even as a last resort but the way they out hand pills in country is wrong on so many levels
The 2 sets of people who are treated like Gods in this country are the clergy and doctors
Well maybe not so much the clergy anymore what with all the recent scandals
But doctors yes, people take what they say as gospel and don't dispute it
Psychiatry is not an exact science, far from it

'How's the view up there Ruby?'
Yes, I'm on my high horse
I'll get down before I hurt myself

But this is more than just about the side effects of olanzapine
This is a bit of a revelation for me being a drug addict
I always thought the answers to my problems were in drugs and pills
They were the only way I get out of my head, literally
Realising I don't want or need them is a huge step for me
To actually want to be awake and not asleep or comatose is very new
It's good
It's great even

My dad is down for the day
I haven't seen him in about a month
My dad is a funny one
Our relationship was non existent up until the time I went in to hospital for the first time
I was in regular hospital for 4 weeks and then a psychiatric hospital for 2 weeks
Even though he lived an hour and a half away he came to see me everyday
It was the first time we had sat down just me and him and really talked
Some days we didn't talk at all, we just sat, me writing and him reading the paper
He always brought treats, magazines or my favourite chocolate
Even though I was at my sickest I have fond memories of that time
I realised he wasn't just an alcoholic control freak
He was my dad
My older sister and brother don't really have a relationship with him and that makes me sad
He is great to talk to, we have the best conversations about anything and everything
He also loves my dogs just as much as I do
So as the four of us went for a walk this morning I was excited to tell him that I'd stopped taking the olanzapine. He used to be worried that I'd fall asleep driving or set the house on fire
He knew I abused it anyway
So I was wondering about you and your dad
Do you get on with your dad?
Do you want to get on with him if you don't?

Oh and another effect of not taking the olanzapine
I haven't been binging and purging half as much
I'm not planning my binges days in advance
I know it's early days but I just feel so positive about not taking it

Mary just rang
I'm seeing her tomorrow
I wonder what she'll think of all this

Until tomorrow x

Monday, 25 June 2012

2 birds with 1 stone

Usual Monday morning routine for me today
Doctors appointment first thing, chemist to pick up meds and dog walking
The sea was so calm this morning, it's usually a surfers paradise
Normally my doctors appointment is short and sweet punctuated with inane small talk but today I had something important (in my eyes, probably not his) to talk to him about today
I mentioned olanzapine in yesterdays post and following a comment from the lovely Bella, over at Too much, not enough it got me thinking
I've always known that a side effect of olanzapine (zyprexa) is weight gain but the way it was explained to me was that it increases appetite and I can control that so I wasn't too worried
I was put on it when I first went to treatment in 2005, it was prescribed for anxiety
I've been on it since but as you readers know, I abused it and used it as a sleeping pill
So last night I did a little investigating and found loads about olanzapine and weight gain

Metabolic Effects
Recent studies have established that olanzipine disturbs the metabolism by making the body take preferentially it's energy from fat (instead of privileging carbohydrates)

Olanzapine promotes fat accumulation

Olanzapine may cause body weight gain and hyperphagia (obsessive hunger) by altering appetite signalling in the brain

I was outraged to read this and marched straight in to my mother to tell her of my findings
'But your sister told you that ages ago' she said
I have no memory of this, probably because I was stoned out of my head on the bloody thing

I am so annoyed
Annoyed at myself for not researching it properly sooner
And annoyed at my doctors for lying to me
It's ironic that I was put on it to help anxiety but it causes the very thing makes me the most anxious

Ay ay ay

So armed with my research I waited in the waiting room rehearsing my angry but clever speech, refusing to take it ever again
To my frustration my usual doctor was on holidays and I was fobbed off with his stand in
'Congratulations on your new job' she said to me
'What job' I asked
'Oh sorry, I thought you were someone else'
This was going well
She wrote out my prescriptions and I took the opportunity to ask her about  the side effects
The phone rings and interrupts me
'You don't look like your gaining weight'
I felt like crying out 'How the bloody hell do you know, maybe I'm actually supposed to be thinner but the bloody olanzapine is storing fat all over my body'
'I wouldn't worry' she says
Easy for her to say
Anyway she didn't have the power to change my meds so I took the prescription while secretly plotting to throw it in the nearest bin

This actually solves 2 of my problems in one fell swoop
No more overtaking my meds and no more unwanted fatty deposits

Thinking back to when I was in treatment everyone and their mother was on olanzapine and I remember referring to it as 'the new valium'
Shrinks think it is nectar from the Gods and it's not addictive (I beg to differ)
I hate the way they hand out pills like they're smarties
When I was in treatment I was on 4 medications, methadone, duloxatine, zimovane and olanzapine
I was a walking pharmacy and the thing is I didn't need any of them (bar methadone)
I think I need to solve my issues not cover over them with meds and more meds

I'd love to know about you, have any of you been on olanzapine or any other medication that had adverse side effects?
I think synthetic, man made drugs are a lot more harmful than natural drugs
That's my experience anyway
Coming off heroin cold turkey takes a week at most, a week of hell yes but it won't kill you
I've come off benzos and it can take months before you feel normal again
Cold turkey from alcohol can kill you
I've been weaning off methadone for the last 2 years and I'm only half way there
It has ruined my teeth and gives me severe constipation
If I don't take it everyday I'll go in to horrific withdrawel. Many say it's worse coming off methadone than it is off heroin
I'd well believe it

Well at least I know now and can make an informed decison

Curiosity got the better of me last night and I weighed myself
I've lost a little
I'll post stats soon

After my shower I noticed my hair coming out in handfuls
I'm also going grey
Not yet 30 and I'm going grey
I'm not surprised  what with the things I put my body through

I've stopped taking the diet pills also, they make me feel too sick and I now don't trust any medication

Are you on any medication?
Does it help you or hinder you?
Id love to know

Thanks for reading this and as always lots of love x

Sunday, 24 June 2012

Binging of a different kind

I've been binging for the last 4 days
Not on food but on diet pills
The feeling of not wanting to eat is addictive
I feel wired but to be free of the binging and purging is bliss
I only have about 5 pills left
I'm not buying anymore
I want to know my weight
The suspense is killing me
I'll wait until I see Mary though

The wedding in Italy is 5 short weeks away
No doubt they will fly by
We are staying there for 10 days, 10 days filled with family lunches and family dinners
I should be looking forward to it and I am, kind of
But I'm also very anxious
Someone suggested that I leave my eating disorder at home
I've tried this before but she always manages to turn up uninvited
The funny thing is I love Italian food, it's my favourite food in the whole world
But this worries me as I'm afraid I will lose all control over my eating and I will turn into a crazed binge
monster eating everything that comes my way
It would be easier not to go at all but I'm not giving myself that option, I'm making myself go
I will probably enjoy myself once I'm there, it just thinking about it makes me anxious
I've had a strange relationship with food since I was a child
I loved food, not junk food, I loved dinners like meat, veg and potatoes
I remember my family saying all the time 'Ruby is such a good eater, she has a great appetite'
I hated when they said that, I wanted to be a dainty eater, eating little bits not this greedy child with a healthy appetite
Even as a child I equated skinny as good and fat as bad
As a teenager I remember trying to restrict but I just couldn't do it, I loved food too much
I remember my ballet teacher telling my mother I had got too thin
I was secretly delighted
I remember being in that ballet class and looking at the girl in front of me at the barre
Her arm was so thin and I wanted thin arms too
Age 19 and myself and 3 friends rented an apartment in Dublin
We each had a press in the kitchen for our food
I used to steal their food, pasta, pasta sauce, anything that looked nice
I remember my boyfriend at the time telling me I had got pudgy
The drugs were getting out of hand at this point
I stopped eating when I was using
I didn't eat a thing
In hospital a nurse tells me I'm anorexic
I refuse to believe her, how could I be anorexic, I love food
I remember my sister trying to force feed me
I looked like a skeleton but I just couldn't see it
I sink to an all time low of 35 kilos
I thought I was fat
In drug treatment I put on nearly 3 stone
Everyone was delighted but in reality I had just turned from anorexic to bulimic
Someone makes a comment about my ass being fat and that triggers me to lose all the weight again
Psychiatric hospital admission and inpatient
I'm put on olanzipine and over the next year slowly work my way up to an all time high of 60 kilos
I hated myself
I wanted to unzip my skin and step out of it
A year later someone makes a comment that I've lost weight
This triggers another anorexic episode
I don't know why some people think it's ok to pass comments about weight
I would never make a comment good or bad about someones weight
I remember every comment that's ever been made about my weight
It always triggers some sort of reaction
Present day and I don't know where to go from here
Just last week I was talking about recovery but I feel so far from recovery now
My brain is addled from these stupid pills
I'm always sorry I took them
I never learn
I am the very definition of insanity

Until tomorrow x