Saturday, 12 October 2013

Goodbye anorexia

Mary has been telling me for a long time that I should get rid of clothes that are in a very small size
My 'anorexic clothes' as I call them
And for the longest time I have resisting doing this
Mainly because I had no intention of gaining weight
But weight gain is going to happen
For real
These clothes are not going to fit me anymore and I hopefully I won't ever need them again
This is not just a closet clean out
This is saying goodbye to anorexia
It's making a commitment to gain weight and maintain it
It's an action that says 'I'm moving on and I'm leaving my ED behind me'
I guess it's symbolic
Symbolic of saying goodbye to my anorexic self
I don't need to tell you how hard this is

So during the week I began the 'purge' of my 'anorexic clothes'
My mother was close by for moral support
To be honest a lot of the stuff was clothes that I just didn't wear any more regardless of the size
I filled 2 black bags
I have to admit though I kept my favourite anorexic clothes
My reason being that I need them for the moment
I found the blue jeans that I am wearing in the photos below, in a shop in France a few years ago
I was 80lbs and I was overjoyed to find a lovely pair of jeans that actually fit me
I love them
They are by far my favourite jeans
Throwing them out is proving very difficult

I've had to think about how I'm going to handle my clothes situation when in treatment
I don't want to bring a selection of clothes in different sizes
So what I've decided to do is bring is the clothes that fit me right now
Leave clothes that will fit me at home
And my mother can bring them in as I need them and take the clothes that are too small home with her
It's the easiest way I think

Mary suggested that because I am on a limited income that I ask my parents for help buying some new clothes
Financially I mean
I think that is a stroke of genius, he he!
So this morning my mother and I hit the shops
I live near a surfing town so there are a few really cool surf shops with funky hoodies
I have jeans in every size known to man so I don't need any new ones
So today my mission was to buy a couple of hoodies
I am a hoody, jeans and trainers girl
I guess the look is kind of surfy but I am by no means a surfer
We concentrated on one shop as that is all I could really handle
Within a couple of minutes of being in the shop I found 4 hoodies that I really liked
I tried them all on and it wasn't as traumatic as I was anticipating
The smallest size was too big for me that's good as I can grow in to them
I narrowed my choice down to 2 and I was really happy with them
I also bought a little hat
All in all it was a positive experience and I am so grateful to my mother for helping me out
These things are stressful and my mother is a great support
This is another step in embracing recovery
Weight gain has always been my down fall but now I feel ready
I feel ready for treatment
I feel ready to fight hard
I feel so ready to leave this illness behind me and live my life
Bring it on weight gain!

So here are my new threads
I'd love to know what you think?

Blue fleecy hoody, Roxy and favourite blue jeans

Navy hoody with flowers 

To keep my little head warm

Friday, 11 October 2013

Once upon a time..................

Once upon a time there was a girl called Ruby
To the outside world she had everything
A nice home
A loving family
Lots of friends
Good grades
She had big dreams to make it out of her small town
She wanted to be a dancer and she studied ballet and jazz
Dancing was all she really cared about
But behind the thin veil of her perfect life, cracks were beginning to appear
Addiction was in home and it effected everyone
She longed for the day when she could turn 18 and leave the tense atmosphere of her house for good and leave all her problems behind her

Ruby had always been a good girl
At home and at school
She never rocked the boat
She was a people pleaser
Eager for people to like and accept her
She just wanted to be loved
But as she grew in to a teenager, she began to unravel
She was tired of being good
Of always doing the right thing
She wanted to break free and have some fun

Ruby made new friends in school
She changed her attitude in to 'I don't give a shit about anything'
But underneath she still just wanted to be accepted
She took up smoking and got drunk for the first time at age 14
She loved the fact that she could escape reality and chased that high again and again
Somehow she managed to make it through school
The last day of school she walked out the school gates anticipating a feeling of freedom but all she felt was lost

As all her friends went to college, Ruby took the first job that came her way
She became involved with a boy who had a bad reputation
Together they dragged each other down
At age 18 Ruby and her boyfriend became addicted to heroin
Her parents also separated around this time
It seemed that her whole world was crumbling but instead of trying to deal with it, she ran in the opposite direction

Heroin addiction brought Ruby to her knees
She was in way over her head
She didn't know it at the time but she was also developing an eating disorder
When she was using she used to stay at her boyfriends house
It was a doss house for junkies
Once a week Ruby would go home and recharge her batteries
Having not eaten for days, felt completely overwhelmed when she opened the door of the fridge and it was packed with food
She felt massively guilty because she knew that there was no food in her boyfriend's house
She also felt greedy for eating the food
To this day she still feels those feelings when eating

Ruby's weight plummeted but she thought she was skinny because of the drugs
She had no clue that she was in the grip of anorexia
Ruby's parents arranged for her to do a detox in a hospital in Dublin
She was 19
Noticing that she wasn't eating, one of the nurses sat her down one day and told her that she had anorexia but Ruby was in massive denial
She just couldn't get her head around it
It was too much to take in
Even though she was eating next to nothing
Even though she was hiding food
Even though she weighed the same as a child
She just couldn't accept it

For the next few years Ruby continued to use
Her life was a total mess physically and mentally
On the eve of her 23rd birthday she went in to drug treatment
Again the subject of anorexia came up
There was another girl there who had anorexia/bulimia and Ruby could relate to her so much
It came to a point where she could no longer deny the fact that she was ill
This girl helped her muster up the courage to be honest
Ruby spent 6 months in treatment and gradually gained weight until she was at a healthy weight
But all was not well
She had switched from anorexia to bulimia and no one knew
She left treatment with another set of problems

Now that Ruby had been given the diagnosis of anorexic, she felt that she had to live up to the title
Up until this point she didn't weigh herself
But the numbers on the scale seemed important to the doctors so they became important to her
She was in and out of hospital and treatment
She was put on meds
One of which was to help her gain weight
And gain weight she did
Over a few months she went from being severely underweight to almost over weight (debatable)
Everyone presumed that because she looked ok she must be ok
But nothing had changed, only her weight
She was still completely eating disordered
She was still purging
She was still anxious and depressed

It took one comment about her weight to send her spinning in to a relapse
She lost weight rapidly
She felt in control again
But along with the weight she felt like she was losing her mind
Her mental state was fragile
Her health was beginning to fail
She restricted so much that binging was inevitable
The binging and purging got worse and worse
On a bad day she was purging 10 - 12 times a day
She began to shoplift food
She felt no different than when she was addicted to drugs
Same shit different substance

This way of life was taking it's toll
 She bounced from extreme highs to extreme lows
She craved evenness and steadiness
She was so tired being this way
And her life was slipping through her fingers
She had to do something
So she rang the treatment centre and was given an appointment
She hopes to go in to treatment
She has to before it's too late

This story is ongoing so I don't know how it ends
Ideally I would go to treatment and come out brand spanking new
In a great frame of mind
With a body I loved and accepted
My relationships with my family would be saved
They would be so proud of me for turning my life around
I would come home and start again
I would go food shopping once a week
I wouldn't restrict and I'd eat 3 healthy meals a day without purging
I would pull my weight at home and manage my money properly
I would get back in contact with my friends and have an active social life
I would start attending meetings again and get a sponsor
I'd take care of myself and take pride in my appearance
I'd exercise but not to excess
I'd volunteer at the local animal shelter and maybe foster dogs
I'd go back to school to study something that I love
I'd help other addicts and eating disordered people
I'd be happy in my own skin
Happy with my life
Happy to be me

Of course in reality I know it won't quite be like that
Nothing ever runs as smoothly as that
I have to realistic
Slips and relapse are part and parcel of recovery
I accept that
I just have to be not so hard on myself if I don't do everything perfectly
Recovery isn't about being perfect
It's about doing your best to do the right thing
It's about standing up to your eating disorder and taking your life back
It's about trying
Recovery is not the destination
It's all about the journey

I know that this will the most difficult thing that I will ever do
There are so many things to deal with
Weight restoration
Body image
Rebuilding confidence and self esteem
Learning to accept a new body
Learning new coping skills
So many hurdles to overcome
But I am ready
I am so ready

I have to admit that I am kind of excited about starting a new life
About possibilities
About taking back my life
Being responsible
Anything could happen
Who knows what doors will open and what opportunities will come my way

So my story may not have a happily ever after that that's ok
I will settle for 'And then she lived the rest of her life as best she could'
That's my happily ever after

Do you believe in happily ever after?

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Stop the world I want to get off!

The treatment centre rang yesterday
I was totally unprepared for the call and was actually asleep when my mother answered the phone
She knocked on my door and said 'Imelda is on the phone'
I stumbled up to the phone wondering who the hell Imelda was and it wasn't until I heard her voice that I realised who it was
She had received my referral letters and was ringing to ask me some questions
I explained my situation as best I could
No need for sugar coating the truth anymore
It gets me no where
She asked me if I had any concerns about going in
I was honest and said I was nervous to see the 2 nurses that I had trouble with on my last admission
As luck would have it neither of them are working on that ward at the moment
Imelda said that they had concerns about my drowsiness
And I was very drowsy on my last couple of admissions
I struggled to stay awake during groups and it seemed every time I sat down I fell asleep
My methadone has been reduced since then so hopefully that won't be an issue this time

I asked her if there is a waiting list and there isn't
The programme isn't full
There are 5 girls in at the moment
I wanted to ask more questions like what ages are the girls and what ED do they have but I didn't
She offered me an assessment this week but I said I needed more time
She suggested next Wednesday so I agreed to that

This is all good news
This is what I want
But all of a sudden it's all real
It's actually happening and it's happening so fast
It's scary
The reality of the situation is only hitting me now
Talking about treatment and recovery is easy
But taking action is another story
I want to go to treatment
I do
I guess I know what's ahead of me and I know it's not going to be a walk in the park

The only thing scarier than going to treatment is doing nothing
Carrying on like this indefinitely is a horrible thought
I suppose I thought this would all take a longer
I was hoping to go in before Christmas but I didn't anticipate it being this soon
But this is good
Isn't it?

As well as myself going to treatment my family are also going in to treatment in a way
Family is quite involved in the process
There are weekly groups for concerned family and friends
And also family therapy
We live 3 hours away from the centre so it's a big commitment
Plus I have to arrange care for my dogs which as you can imagine causes me a bit of stress
My Mum and Dad will spilt care and when they need to travel to Dublin the dogs will go to the kennels
The kennels I use are amazing
They know my situation and really are great
And the dogs actually like going there so that eases my mind

This is my last chance in this particular centre
So I do feel a bit of pressure to make it work
As I have often said, time isn't on my side any more
I'm not 19 anymore
If this doesn't work, I don't know where  to go or what to do
But I'll cross that bridge when if I come to it

One thing is for sure
I can't carry on this way
My sanity
My health
And my wallet sure can't take much more
But today I just feel like getting in to bed and sleeping and forgetting this whole sorry mess
If there was an off button in my head I would gladly switch it off
I just want to be home and well
I want to fast forward 6 months and have treatment behind me
I just want to be free of this thing
Stop the world I want to get off!!!

Monday, 7 October 2013

Cops, Cars and Canines

It all started yesterday morning
I woke with a craving 
A craving for pasta and crisps and bread and anything else that is beige
All the things that I don't usually allow myself
I piled my dogs in to my little car and we set off for the supermarket
I felt slightly possessed as I drove
I had one objective and nothing was going to get in my way
I felt no different than when I used to drive to get drugs
That same fluttery feeling in my tummy
The determination to get what I wanted
The blinkers were on

I rounded a corner and came face to face with a Garda car parked across the road
In front of the car was a say pointing to the right  saying 'Detour'
Feckin' great
That should have been my first sign that what I was about to do was not a good idea
I pulled in to the narrow road unsure of where I was going
The road was not so much a road a track
I just kept going praying that I wouldn't meet another car
Eventually I arrived in my town via a back road

I carried on to the beach where I walked my dogs for about an hour
Then it was on to the real business
I took my cloth bag and headed in to the supermarket
I filled it with anything that looked good
Or bad rather
I slung my bag over my shoulder 
Took out my phone to pretend I was talking to someone
And walked out
As I left the shop I speed walked to my car
I had an awful feeling
A feeling that this time I wouldn't be so lucky
I started my car and got the hell out of there
Looking in my rear view mirror every few seconds

I really can't you a proper logical explanation for why I do this
I'm not a thief in any other area of my life
The only thing I take is food
So I think this behaviour is tied up in my ED
I hate doing it
I really do
But everytime I say it's the last time, I go back again and again
It's not really about money either
At least I don't think it is
I feel huge guilt and shame for doing this
It makes me feel like a complete loser
But I can't seem to stop

Anyway back to the story
I set off for home and decided to chance the main road and hope the road was open
To my horror half way down the road, I met a fire truck and a Garda car
The Garda motioned for me to stop
My heart thumped in my chest
Is this it?
Have I been caught?
I looked at the bag of food on the passenger seat and cursed silently to myself
The garda made his way over to my car and I rolled down my window
Now, my dogs are not vicious in the slightest but there is one thing that brings out their protective side and that is when someone comes over to the car
I guess they think that it is their car and they have to guard it

As the garda began to speak my two dogs started barking at the top of their lungs
They were throwing themselves at the window barking their heads off and Honey was trying to squeeze between the headrest and the window
Talk about drawing attention to yourself!
The garda jumped when he saw them and stepped back
I couldn't hear a word he was saying and I was trying to get the dogs to calm down but they were having a fit trying to get at the man
I got out of the car in order to hear what he was saying
He told me to pull my car in to the side of the road
I got back in and pulled in as much as I could with shaking hands and 2 mental dogs in the back
'More, pull in more' the garda said
I started to reverse so I could pull in properly when he started shouting at me
'What are you doing? I told you to pull in?'
'I'm trying' I yelled
I could see him getting really quite worked up but I was under pressure and I am not the worlds greatest at parking at the best of times
And the fact that I had a bag of stolen goods 
My nerves were shot

I finally got pulled in and I sat and waited for the road to be opened
All the while praying that he wouldn't come back over
After about 10 minutes the garda waved me on
I was so annoyed at him shouting at me that I wanted to shout 'Asshole!' out the window at him but I decided against it
I didn't want to draw any more attention to myself
But  how rude of him to shout at me
I mean what was his problem?

I arrived home and felt so relieved to pull in to my driveway
I definitely had a lucky escape
I really need to get my shit together
Before I really do get in to trouble
I'm out of control
I'm afraid
For the first time in my life I am afraid

Saturday, 5 October 2013


I saw Mary yesterday
After weighing me she told me that I am 'emaciated'
I almost laughed
For 2 reasons
1. In my eyes I am a perfectly healthy weight, chubby even
2. My old counsellor used to tell me that I was 'emancipated'
I think she was getting her words mixed up

Then I got a text from a friend who I had ran in to last week after not seeing her for a while
She said in the text that she got a fright when she saw me and I looked really ill
Why can't I see this?
What is wrong with me?
Do I see the world through fat tinted sun glasses?

My mother and I were chatting last night and she asked me the question 'Why are you so afraid that you're going to be fat?'
I had to think about this
None of my family are overweight
I've never been overweight
So why do I think if I eat normally I will be overweight
To be honest I think that I could easily be overweight
The other extreme of the same spectrum
I could easily be one of those 400lb people we see on tv
I'm a very all or nothing person
I either eat nothing or everything
So therefore I could either be really skinny or really overweight
Am I delusional?
Maybe I am
I just don't know anymore

I don't know what's real
I can't trust my own eyes
I can't trust my own judgement
I can't trust myself

I don't want to be like this
I've had enough of my ED ruling my head and life
I'm preparing myself for the fight of my life
Place your bets now
I know who my money is on......

Friday, 4 October 2013

Pro Ana

I've seen my doctor
I've seen my psychiatrist
I've rang the treatment centre
I've told Mary of my decision
Now I play the waiting game
These things take time and at some point I will have to go to Dublin for an assessment
If I could, I would go in tomorrow
Things are that bad

Yesterday I perused around some pro ana blogs
Just out of curiosity
I understand that most of these girls are young and naive but it is really rather sick
I can't believe that a lot of these girls have a bona fide ED because if they did they wouldn't wish what they are going through on anyone
When I started this blog I think my writing was on the verge of being pro ana
But that didn't last long as it just didn't sit right with me
Sometimes I see a blog post of someone trying to lose weight and lots of comments telling them to 'Stay strong' and to 'Think thin'
Surely we should be encouraging each other to be happy in our own skin
Surely we have learned by now that skinny does not equal happiness or success
Since I started this blog I have never made a comment to anyone encouraging  them to lose weight
It goes against everything that I believe in

It seems that Lot of these pro ana girls really want to have an ED
I just can't fathom this at all
Well if you do want to develop an ED stay tuned as we have a fabulous offer just for today
For the small price of your sanity, your health and your soul , you too can be skinny
You can be popular and loved
People will envy you
Boys will want to go out with you
Girls will want to be you
The only thing that you have to do is not eat
Easy right?
For the first few days restricting you will feel a hunger that you've never felt before
You will think about food all day and dream about it at night
You will start to become light headed and dizzy
Every time you stand up you will see stars
Over time your hunger will vanish
You feel strong and powerful
High almost
The weight falls off you and you have never felt so good
People comment on your new shape and you fit in to your favourite skinny jeans
Life is good
Your confidence  will sky rocket and you will feel thin and beautiful
You will constantly feel your bones, they are like trophies for all your hard work
You've never felt so happy

But gradually things  will begin to crumble
Now when you look in the mirror all you can see is fat
Even though the number on the scale is going down, you will still feel huge
You begin to withdraw from family and friends
They scale becomes both a friend and an enemy
Along with the weight, you will feel like you are losing your mind
Physically  you will look a mess
You look pale and gaunt
Your hair is falling out
Your skin is papery
Your eyes are black and hollow
Depression and anxiety will creep in
Nothing matters anymore
Your ED  and weight are the only things that you care about
Your family begin to get worried about your ever shrinking frame
But it doesn't matter
Nothing matters
You can't stop even if you wanted to do
And the you will never get the one thing that you desire the most, thinness because you will never believe that you are thin enough

Then one day you break
The hunger is unbearable and you can't stand it an minute
On auto pilot you will go to the supermarket
You will walk around filling your bag with all the foods that you have forbidden
You walk out of the shop with a bag full of binge food
When you get home you eat and eat
Eat, purge, eat, purge, eat, purge..........
You can't stop
You don't know how
This is your life now
You are on a treadmill
Running and running but getting no where
You are so miserable
So lonely
So sick and tired
But you still can't stop

This could go on for years if you are lucky enough that it doesn't kill you before then
Your health will suffer
Your mental health will really suffer
You will become a shell of a person
Living a half life somewhere between life and death

This is what you have to look forward to if you develop an ED
So go ahead
Sign up today
Sell your soul to the devil
Living with an ED is not glamorous
It's not romantic
It's not about being thin
It's a deadly illness that has the highest mortality rate of any mental illness
If you are looking for something
If you are trying to fill a hole in your life
If you are lonely or depressed or anxious
Losing weight is not the answer
It will not bring you happiness or success or popularity
If you develop an ED you will be lucky to make it out alive

What do you think of pro ana?
Have you ever been part of it?
What do you think pro ana means?

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

You get out what you put in!

It's funny how things can change in an instant
I don't know quite when it happened but I have gone from being slightly apathetic about treatment to being really quite motivated
At Last! I hear you cry!
All of a sudden I am incredibly angry with my ED
My ED had always been like a friend
Something to turn to in tough times
And of course she manipulates me in to thinking that she wants to help me
That she wants to be there for me
That she has my best interests at heart
That she is the only one that gets me and understands me
She tricked me in to believing that being thin is the only thing that matters
This illness is so sinister
The bottom line is that she wants be dead
She won't be happy until I am so miserable and sick that I either do it myself or let her do it
Not gonna happen anorexia!
I'm not going to be another statistic
Another young life that this illness has claimed
I won't let that happen

My family are getting increasingly frustrated with me
And I understand that
A lot of the time I think that no one notices my behaviours
I was the same in active addiction
I thought no one knew that I was using
But in reality everyone knows
Anyone with a pair of eyes in their head can see what I am doing
My behaviours are still very out of control
The purging is off the scale
I am afraid to tell you how much money I am spending on food
What a waste?
It's all such a terrible waste
A waste of time
A waste of money
A waste of a life

I am preparing myself for a tough road in treatment
If I do it properly and do the right thing it will be really difficult
But I am ready
I'm willing to do the work
Mary always tells me that 'You get out what you put in'
I want to get a lot out so I'm going to put a lot in

I have no idea what my weight is as I have stopped weighing
I'm not letting my scale have that power over me any more
It's held me prisoner for long enough

I'm thinking that when I go in to treatment that I won't bring my laptop
Therefore I won't be blogging
I hope you understand
I just need to focus on myself for a while
But of course if any one wants to stay touch please feel free to email me

I want a better life
For a long time I was content to live this way but I am just so fed up of entertaining anorexia and bulimia
I am so tired of their never ending appetite
Of their never ending demands
I want to wake up in the morning and not dread the day ahead
I want to be able to walk past a shop without being drawn in to buy binge food
I want to stand on my scale and be happy when I see I am a healthy weight
I want my family not to be so very worried about me all the time
I want to leave my house without feeling like a ball of anxiety
I want my friends back
I want to like a boy and get butterflies in my tummy when I see him
I want to be able to manage my money
I want to be able to look in the mirror and say 'Not too shabby'
I want  the constant tape in my head to shut up
I want to write about something other than my ED
I want to think about something other than my ED
I want to travel
I want to be more spontaneous
I want to be happy in my own skin
I want to be able so say 'I used to have an eating disorder'
I want to be able to say 'I am in recovery'
I want to my life back
I want to live