The reality of eating disorder recovery

Hello flowers,

I am ever so sorry for my recent absence. I realise that I haven’t posted in a little while and before that I only posted recipes! I guess I will tell you a little bit about my past week. Things have been up and down. Mainly down unfortunately but it is imperative that I keep that positive mindset going. Food has been the best it has for years and years. I cook for my family twice a week, we have roast dinners every Sunday, I bake and eat my baking, I eat pizza, pudding every single day of ice cream or a sponge pudding and I have lunch out with my mum at least once every two weeks. These are things I would NEVER have dreamed of doing only five months ago. Five months ago I was in hospital and I woke up every day feeling dread, hatred and self loathing.

This is where the downside comes in. I see many many people who go through recovery and they eat and suddenly their whole life falls into place. They have a job, friends, they go out have generally have FUN. I always wanted to be that person, I always wanted to recover just like that. I think the reality is what I described above is very rare. The more common type of recovery is that one eats and engages in anorexia recovery 100% (me) but then then their mood plummets, they feel more depressed than ever, they are tired, they don’t want to do anything like go shopping, horse riding or the things we love. We think we hang on a second,we were told me all of these professionals and all of our loved ones that if we eat then things will get better. Our mood will increase, we will have energy etc etc.

This is NOT (always) the case. I know exactly what has happened with me and I wanted to tell you all because I don’t have a solution to this problem but it helps knowing what the problem is. Because when you are just sitting there with the worst thoughts ever, it is so frustrating because you don’t know WHY. And I hope that this will help some of you understand a little bit more. When we starve our bodies of the most important source that it needs to function, generally everything goes to pot. We feel physically unwell as well as mentally unwell. Our mood decreases but also something quite interesting happens to our mood. Our brains can’t function properly and when you are eating so little this is even more the case. Your body starts to shut down and when you have NO energy supplies, the body desperately tries to get energy from your muscles to keep your body working.

This is why when our body and brain is malnourished then if a situation happens, it will go over the top of you. You might care about it but you don’t have the time and energy to think about it. You don’t have the energy to make up a thought process of I am feeling happy/angry/sad because… So because of this when you do start eating again your brain CAN function properly. You have thoughts and feelings that are so loud you can’t switch them off. The fact is your thoughts never went, they were always the same but malnourishment caused them to be buried. And this brings me around into a full circle of why you developed anorexia in the first place. Maybe (like me) you had extremely low mood to begin with and of course the anorexia (or other eating disorder) hid that away because you are so consumed on food that you can’t think about anything else. And if this is the case then you know that your low mood that you are experiencing now, it’s just the same as before. It may feel like your mood has gotten a lot worse than when you were buried in anorexia but the truth it is no no worse than before you developed anorexia.

You have come around full circle. Anorexia never got rid of your low mood, anorexia never got rid of the situation as to why you became ill in the first place. It covered everything up so you wouldn’t have to think about it and now here you are faced with the problem again. Like I said above, I do not have a solution to this problem. It is difficult for me to talk about why I became ill in the first place. I don’t 100% know why actually. But the thing I want to improve now that my brain is functioning well is that I want to practice self love. I want to banish all of the awful thoughts I have about myself. I don’t like talking about me being bullied at school, it was an extremely difficult time for me. I now have the thoughts every single day that everyone hates me. Everyone hates me and they would be better of without me. THIS is what anorexia covered up and THIS is why I feel low. Anorexia didn’t just cover that up. It covered up way more than that but the point is I know what I need to improve on. I need to learn to love myself and I think that your first step could be learning to love yourself as well. You don’t have to know why you got poorly. You just have to know the catalyst. (low mood, low self worth etc.)

I really do hope that this helps a few of you. This is where I am at right now and it’s painful so painful but I know if I went back to anorexia I would have no chance of a peaceful life. I would be forever battling with my mind. It is just baby steps like it has been my whole recovery, one foot in front of the other.

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Yesterday lunch

Hello everyone,

I shall be posting a recipe later on today but first I wanted to do a little post about my lunch that I had yesterday. Me and my mum love going out for lunch so we decided to make it a regular occurrence and we usually go once a week depending on how busy we both are. It’s lovely to spend some time with my mum and also I sometimes meet her before/after therapy so it puts me in a good mood. We have two favourite cafes now but we want to find new places to go because it’s always nice to go somewhere different!

The place I went to yesterday was actually a shop and they have a cafe on the top floor. I think lots of places do that now actually and I like going there because then I can look at all of the kitchen/craft stuff when I am finished 😉 Yesterday I felt like a toasted sandwich and I hadn’t actually seen them do toasted sandwiches before but maybe that is because I wasn’t looking? I chose a cheese and tomato toastie and it was delish.

Cheese and tomato toastie

And then for pudding we both got a cake and I got the coffee and walnut cake which is one of my favourite ever flavours. I have also had the chocolate brownie there before as well. I think I like my chocolate things 😉 I shall have to try the chocolate cake next time I go. I have always been eyeing it up but I think that saying you eat with your eyes is true. Because once my dad bought a cake slice and I just wouldn’t have chosen to eat it because it looked just a bit boring but I had it and it was actually very tasty. I don’t know I think that I do usually make such a fuss if my food doesn’t look tasty I think that is definitely something I need to work on! But I don’t think it is a specific eating disorder thing. I think it is a me being silly thing! Ramble over… Here was my cake.

Coffee and walnut cake

I did enjoy it but it was very very dense. It wasn’t light and fluffy and my mum said that my homemade cakes are 1000x better. I think a bake session is in order this weekend 😉 Something different will be happening next week. Something different and scary. On Tuesday I am going out for lunch but I am not going with my mum, I am going with my dad. Me and my dad have a difficult relationship and my illness has made it worse. The other day I was just talking with my dad and suddenly I asked him out for lunch. I am not one to be so forward but I did it and I am actually very proud. Me and my dad don’t really do anything together and if we do then my mum is always there. So I hope that this will be a good time to bond and also it will be out of the house and at my favourite cafe so I think (I hope) that I will feel relaxed because most times I don’t feel relaxed at home and that’s when the conflict starts.

I think I am making important steps and I am quite proud of myself which one day I won’t be ashamed of saying! Eating lunch out is getting a little bit easier each week and I think it just proves that if you try then you will succeed. I am aware that most people might not go out for lunch once a week but I think for me it is helping challenging myself and it helps putting an hour aside each week so me and my mum can have a good chat in a calm and relaxed environment which unfortunately is not home at the moment but it will be. Just take each day as it comes.

Little update

Hello everyone,

I am really sorry about my lack of blog posts recently. I really love writing on my blog so much because I find it really helps to get my feelings out as I definitely find it difficult to talk to people and tell people how I am feeling so I feel like blogging is a good way to do that. Unfortunately things have been a bit rocky with me. I had a whole week last week of listening to my eating disorder and obeying its every word. On this Tuesday I had therapy and I told my therapist yes everything is fine I am eating so well all of my meals and everything. Eventually my community nurse found out and she weighed me which was so embarrassing I am still SO embarrassed because my weight was the same as usual and she said oh that’s fine. And then I realised that my bowels aren’t functioning very well. So I think that’s why the number was really high but I am still so so embarrassed. Like they just expect that I have lost weight and it makes me feel sick inside that I haven’t because that’s what they want.

My community nurse is talking about a “traffic light” system where green is where things are going along just fine, amber is when I am skipping meals frequently and red is when I need to go in hospital again. And she said oh you are on amber definitely on amber but that was before the weigh in and oh gosh im so embarrassed I can’t say that enough. I feel sick just thinking about it. These people must know that weigh ins are never accurate?! I don’t know. I don’t want to tell anyone what I think because that’s the awkward bit and it probably isn’t even relevant. Do you think it is relevant? Like I’m eating much better now than I was. I think it’s so unfair that I just have a few bad days and they chuck me on the scales and now I have to be weighed more often than previously agreed. I can’t believe they haven’t figured out that weighing me makes me worse. I feel like a lab rat. They are poking and prodding needles into me and feeling my hands and asking the temperature of my feet. I feel like everything about me is just being ripped away. They are taking every personal detail and hanging it out to dry for everyone to see. I am really upset I’m sorry but I had to tell someone didn’t I 😦

Have a lovely evening   

My day in pictures

Hello everyone

I have had quite a productive day today and I wanted to tell you all about it and show you some pictures. There has been a slight hitch however that I baked a cake today and I did a step by step of all the pictures but then me being me I FORGOT to take a picture of the actual finished product. WHO DOES THAT? Well, I got extremely flustered but I wanted to show you the pictures anyway and you will just have to believe me when I say it looked fantastic 😉

The ingredients before I gave them a good beating…
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The ingredients after I gave them a good beating. Fact: cake batter tastes better than the actual cake just saying

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Had to take a picture of my favourite Cath Kidston spatula didn’t I

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This would be one of the sponges but then that’s as far as I got with the picture taking I’m afraid

And then other things that I have done today was I made two birthday cards:

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Birthday card number one

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Birthday card number two

And then I had to buy some cake ingredients, went to see family and wrote a pen pal letter oh and I made my dinner but no photo today because I am posting the recipe tomorrow. (if you follow my instagram then hello you have probably already seen said photo) and then that’s me, I feel very productive.

I hope you all have a lovely evening

Life is so beautiful

Hello,
I went for such a lovely walk on Saturday and I wanted to share it with you. Unfortunately my mum and I only took out one of our dogs because the other was poorly so he was at the vets but he is getting better now thankfully. It was such a glorious sunny day on Saturday and perfect for a dog walk first thing in the morning. So unlike today as it has been pouring with rain and windy most of the day!

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That picture there is where Millie was barking at us because she wanted us to throw something in the water for her to bring back. She is absolutely ball mad and whenever we go out she ALWAYS finds a ball and she will bark and bark at us to throw it for her. Silly dog!

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Beautiful sunny day

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This was just before Millie disappeared off to find the muddiest ditch she could possibly find

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Millie’s socks. I laughed so much when she came out like this. I haven’t laughed that much in a while and in that second it just made me think life is so beautiful. There is absolutely no point in wasting precious moments like this than being so miserable and so unhappy. You can’t laugh when you don’t eat and you can’t appreciate anything at all. Because anorexia isn’t just about food and depression isn’t about crying all the time. It is much more deep rooted than that and you have to reach down deep to see that there is more to life than this horrible illness and no one can do that but you and you alone.

I hope you all have had a lovely Monday and just keep smiling ❤

A bit about my week

Hello,

I hope you are all well and I hope you have had a lovely week. It’s the weekend now which means we can all slow down a bit and I give permission for you to have a break and relax this weekend. I guess a lot of things have happened since last week when I last wrote a blog post so I shall start with last weekend when it was my nanas 80th birthday party and on Saturday morning I travelled up there with my parents because it takes 5-6 hours to get there and my sisters went the day before so they could help with the party preparations etc. On Sunday evening it was my nanas actual party but on Saturday evening it was still a huge challenge for me. We had dinner with the German side of my family because we just haven’t seen them in so many years and it was nice to catch up. I find the socialising part so difficult in itself because it has been so many years since I have seen my German cousins so that is one challenge. And then the next challenge was actually eating in front of them and at first I got so anxious and upset because I would say no when I was offered a drink but they kept going on and on and wouldn’t take no for an answer so that upset me a little.
So the second challenge was to actually eat in front of everyone and I think a lot of people recovering from eating disorders find this bit hard and I know I do because I think people are going to be staring at me and thinking nasty things about me. The more likely thing is that they would probably be too engrossed in their own food to even notice. And then the last challenge was eating a Chinese takeaway (!!!!!!!) Oh my I haven’t had a takeaway in over six years. It was scary and uncomfortable but I did it and I came out the other side and I am not ashamed to admit I am actually a bit proud of myself.
So then the next day on Sunday we spent most of the day preparing the food for the party. The actual party was with all of the family and some of my nanas friends as well. I think the most difficult part was the socialising. I just kind of felt out of place and I didn’t know what to say or how to act. I didn’t really feel like I belonged at all. And then that’s sort of how my week turned from bad to worse because I started listening to all of the thoughts again. I listened to my eating disorder and I obeyed but starting from Wednesday I have been trying my absolute hardest to follow my meal plan again.
Yesterday was also a huge challenge for me because I had to go out to lunch with my community nurse. It was scary for me and it’s hard for me because she barely knows anything about eating disorders. She had a training course a few weeks ago and she likes to tell me things that aren’t even relevant. Like I said once that I am worried about putting weight on quickly and she said when you are at such a low weight, the dieticians increase your meal plan gradually so you don’t get refeeding syndrome. And it’s like that has got nothing to do with what I said she just likes showing off.  It frustrates me because she goes on about eating disorders being secretive and then I ask her not not be weighed and she is fine with it. I know I should be more angry at myself for doing what my eating disorder wants be I WANT them to stop me when I can’t stop myself.
Anyway, by the time I got there I was so anxious and I wasn’t hungry one bit. I said to her I don’t want anything because I am not hungry and then she said oh okay then well do you mind if I get something then? I don’t know, I feel like I ask too much just for these people to support me. I want them to help me but they don’t they just sit there while I have a battle against myself and it’s just unpleasant. In the end I did order a sandwich and it was actually really tasty and that is all that matters I have decided. Not that my nurse just had a salad and I could have gotten away with not having anything. I stood up to the bully in my head and I ate.
And then today has been quite a busy day and I have really enjoyed it actually. I went to my volunteering this morning which I go to every Friday morning. I help out in a charity shop and I really like it because it helps me a lot with my social skills and that is the area that I need to improve on a lot. And then after the charity shop I came home and had lunch and then I painted my nails this lovely coral sort of colour:

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I then relaxed a little this afternoon and ate my amazing afternoon snack of course which I wanted to talk to you about.

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I just love eat natural bars SO much and if you live in the UK, like fruit and nuts bars, like chocolate then you will love these as well. I always have my cupboard stocked with them because they are my favourite go to snack. I like how they are really balanced with a little bit of fruit, protein, important fats and then the chocolate which is needed to balance it out. I think this one here along with the cashew and blueberry yogurt coated ones are my favourite. So yes, if you haven’t tried these already then I would highly recommend you trying them! I hope you all have a lovely evening and I shall be bak with another post very soon

Don’t be sad when it’s sunny

Hello everyone,

So as the title suggests the sun has finally decided to make a guest appearance where I am now. The weather has been having major mood swings recently so it was nice to get outside today and feel that sun on me. I think today has been one of those “rollercoaster”  days. One minute you are up feeling great and then the next moment it’s like you have been buried 10 feet under the sand and you honestly have no desire to get out.
I saw my CPN today and that plus weigh day is my two most traumatic days of the week. I know I only focus on the bad points. Or maybe they are good points but I turn them into bad points. But I am beyond sick of every time I go in for a weigh in the nurse goes WELL DONE!!!!!!! YOU HAVE GAINED. So what have you been doing differently? What have you been eating? It is just like no. Go away and stop trying to dig further into me than you already have. It’s like I have no privacy left. And then seeing my CPN might even be worse or maybe the dietician when she said I have gained more weight than usual and we need to keep an eye on that. That was the first time I ever saw this dietician and I had not gained more weight than usual. It only looked more because I hadn’t been weighed in three weeks when before that it was weekly. Or how about when the community nurse said to me today oh yes even I thought you had gained quickly.
WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE? You don’t know me. I have been living in my body for 19 years do not act like you know every single thing about the human anatomy you know nothing. I think if it hadn’t been for my mum then I would have had a full blown I don’t know what to call it but just picture tears and me screaming down the phone to my mum that I can’t do any of this anymore. That was what happened last week but luckily this week I managed to divert that huge scene so it was just a little scene although it was in a very public place  because I was meeting my mum for lunch but luckily I had her there. She is my golden star I am very lucky to have her.
So as I said, I met my mum for lunch today and after this mornings events it was all up from there. We both had a wrap and I had a falafel and yogurt one. It was SO delish I will definitely be eating it again and then for pudding I said a big fuck you to everyone and ate a big slice of brownie. It was slightly rich but divine and I enjoyed it all up so I will not let anyone’s opinions affect me ever because if I was at the low weight a few months ago I can tell you now I didn’t have one laugh or smile on my face ever. Today might have been hard but I took my dogs for a walk and I laughed and laughed. From One of them stalking a bird to the other one just barking at our feet because she wanted a treat.
I can have a good time now and I might be unhappy sometimes but unlike a few months ago there is always something good in my day and I am not going to let go of that ever.