I've been struggling to blog lately and I don't know why. Every time I try and write a thing I just feel overwhelmed and just end up closing the editor. I've even struggled with the eats report this week, even though things have actually been really good on that front! I'm in that weird place where I have so much to say, and yet I don't even know how to say it. I suppose I'm experiencing some weird writers block. I do from time to time.
It's funny, but I do tend to write a lot more and write my best stuff when I'm emotional, or unhappy. When I'm in a good place it doesn't even occur to me to blog and when I try, the words never seem to happen. I suppose my newfound need for privacy and dislike of broadcasting my life and innermost thoughts on the internet has played into that. I am the sort that does check my blog stats (I love my numbers, ok!) and it does bother me that my most popular posts are still me at my very worst, although I am grateful that some of my more recent positive posts are getting more popular and are starting to overtake them. I have tried to read some of my posts from the summer, but I can't without cringing. That really wasn't me... I'm not sure who I am even now, but I feel more closer to working that one out than I was before. I feel a little more like myself.
I have thought about deleting a lot of it, but at the same time I'm still very mindful of that promise I made to my past self.
I am never allowed to forget that time.
Every time I feel fat, or wonder what the point is, or can't be bothered to eat (which I do, especially if I'm 'not hungry.') I have all that to remind me.
That moron commenting on my weight was a blessing in disguise in the long run. Partly because of the much needed kick up the arse I needed, because I love proving people wrong, and partly because it got me off social media and forced me to live in the real world a little more. I was spending an unhealthy amount of time on social media, especially Instagram, and even though I do check in from time to time, I'm not unhealthy checking it constantly and trying to take pretty pictures. I've never really liked the 'recovery community' on there, and have made no secret of that. A lot of the time it's anything but. It just feel too binary, too superficial, and aggressive and bullying, not to mention downright patronising and a lot of the time missing the point, and I'm happier off there. Don't get me wrong, I've met lovely people, and made some good friends, and there are people I do root for and feel invested in, but my problem is with the culture and community rather than the people.
I also am aware that most of my friends are other people with eating disorders or mental health issues, and I need to start interacting with 'normal people' too, rather than having my whole life revolving around my eating disorder, and normalising it by only talking to other people with eating disorders.
Things have actually been ok lately, and I've actually been ok. I still have moments of feeling trapped, of being unable to stand myself, of feeling that sheer panic. I've also had a lot of nostalgia, but I've been able to deal far better. I get a little low, or bored, or ragey at times, but I don't fall into that deep despair I did before. I'm doing my best to reclaim March, and spring, and this time of year, and now it's coming up to the end of the month, I actually feel like I've done pretty well.
The first thing my doctor remarked when I walked in to our appointment was that I was looking stronger. I'm actually feeling a lot stronger, both mentally and physically. It's not to say I haven't had a few bad pain days, but in general I do feel better.
I got weighed. My BMI is now 15.1, so I've finally gained a little, albeit a negliable amount. The thing is, I don't even care that I've gained. I actually went a week without weighing too, because I didn't feel like it. Not in an unhealthy denial type way, but more in a not actually caring what some arbitury number says about me. I felt I had a vague idea what I weighed anyway, and seeing as I've basically been eating the same amounts and been sticking to structure and all that, it's highly unlikely that I would have gained like, 10 kilos, when I haven't weighed myself for a few days.
Funnily enough I wasn't actually hating on myself for 'making myself fat.' I actually felt pretty proud of myself. I obviously already knew what I weighed as I still weigh myself, but I didn't mind him seeing the number. In fact I wanted him too.
Anyway, I'm now on monthly monitoring, and basically been told to keep on doing what I'm doing. My heart rate is still low, my bloods are still good, and I still haven't had a period since August, so I'm still in fairly poor shape, although I'm lucky. It could have been far worse...
On the days I don't feel bloated, and rubbish, I actually feel ok about myself too. I get painfully aware of how thin I am at times, and I'm starting to hate it.
There's a reason I don't post photos of me smiling that often (when you ignore my terrible teeth! Haha!) I have old lady wrinkles, which I really hate. I've felt increasingly self conscious about it. When I mentioned it to landlord ex he did say, 'well yeah, you've had them for ages!' Kind of weird how I didn't really notice before.
I do sometimes struggle with the whole eating more and the idea of weight gain thing, but the two things that stop me from going back are firstly, just remembering how shit I felt in the summer and autumn, and how damn miserable I was when my diet was poor, and secondly, I get chips now, and eggs, and potatoes and facon, and chickpeas, and all the good foods, when I didn't before! I kind of care more about eating nice foods than I care about the numbers. It's not to say I'm not counting, because I am, or that I'm not annoyingly rigid, because oh God, I am infuriatingly so, but it feels less important.
I'm not quite eating what I want to eat, but I'm far closer than I was, and I'm making more choices based on what I actually like, rather than it all being dictated by fitting numbers. I was walking past my favourite pasty shop the other day, and I came so close to just buying the damn pasty for my tea, but I couldn't. It's not the right time yet, although it feels closer to actually being possible.
I have also been out with landlord ex, and again getting slowly more flexible in eating when out. It's been factored into my meal plan, sure, but it's been higher kcal than what I'd usually go for, and more importantly, without compensation. I've just followed the plan, and despite what my head has been telling me, I haven't piled on loads of weight. In fact I've gained barely anything.
I have a lot more energy, again, and I've been far more productive than I have been in months. No more being glued to my chair in my pyjamas waiting to go to bed. I've left the house most days, and I'm constantly doing things. I'm still not great at the whole socialising thing, and I'm still having difficulty with the whole energy management side. I either have too much, or none at all, and I've always been very bad at ever focusing on one thing a completing a task, because I am very prone to procrastination and distraction.
I've done better with the 'spending money on pointless crap' thing too. I've been far less impulsive and whimsy. Again it's only something I really do when I'm unhappy. I've always described myself more as a 'binge shopper.'
I did buy a couple of new dresses the other day.
I did also buy a new cardigan. I feel a little bad about it as I'm supposed to be getting rid of things, but at the same time I have been very good at not whim buying things at the moment, and I have been wearing them, rather than shoving them in a bag in the corner of my room with the tags still on as I have so many times in the past...
I went to my folks for a few days, and it actually went well! I even managed to cook and eat with them. Plenty of burgers did still occur, but my folks were pretty impressed with my burger skills and both expressed an interest in learning to make them themselves.
The thing I took from that trip, and the thing that means the most to me in the world is I have my dad back! I am a proper daddy's girl (by my own admission), and my anorexia, and various erratic antics over the last few years have driven a huge wedge between us. However, I feel that we've rekindled our old relationship. We were bonding over cooking and everything. I actually bought my dad Jack's book, which I sent him today, along with a burger recipe!
I couldn't recover for myself, or anyone else. I couldn't even for Roy, or landlord ex, or my son, yet I've done it for my dad.
I've said before that there are no epiphanies, or Road to Damascus moments really, ever, and if I carried on waiting for my moment I would still be very sick, and waiting. However a huge turning point for me was when my dad tentatively approached me with an omelette pan and asked me how much of the three egg omelette he'd made I wanted back in October.
I didn't change straight away, and decide to recover or whatever, me improving has been gradual, but that was the one thing that stuck in my mind and I keep going back to.
My dad taught me to cook, and he is as much of a foodie as me, and losing that part of our relationship has been horrible. I want my dad to be able to cook me nice food and to not be scared of me.
Well all my hard work has been rewarded, I have my daddy back. Seriously. This is why I'm doing it! This is the real victory!
It's weird, because a few months ago I would have said that I hated my dad anyway, and 'what's the point in getting better for him.' Again, malnutrition, and anything that threatened anorexia...
I did do most of the cooking when I was there, for myself and my family, but it was more because they're all vegan for lent, and I happen to be good at vegan food that doesn't taste shit (I have been skint many times in my life!) It was a good feeling though, to cook and share good food with others.
Being at Birmingham actually went well. I initially struggled with the lack of privacy and personal space you get from being part of a large family, but my brother was away so I ended up stealing his room. I made a little den and camped out there.
I made a little hidey hole! Haha!
I managed to get that blueberry muffin and have coffee and cake with my boy.
My mum has even asked me if I'll have him over the Easter holidays! I'm well enough to look after my son!
I sent my mum a copy of my meal plan, and I stuck to structure as much as possible when I was there. Some of the food timings were a little off, because my folks tend to eat their evening meal at 8 or 9, which is a couple of hours after I usually eat my evening meal, but I wanted to eat with them, so I made it happen. Luckily my blood sugar seems to have stablelised so I didn't have any horrible crashes. I even managed to have a couple of party rings when tea was really late and I was hungry!
I also discovered Birmingham has a whittards, so I still got my hot chocolate fix! I was also very good at having my night snack. I just had it a little later.
I even made myself some Agnes food when I was home alone! Haha! Yes, I didn't use being home alone to restrict for the first time, well, ever!
I did have periods of feeling low when I was there, but more in the fact that I still don't know what I'm doing or where I'm going with life in general, but I guess that's part of the process. My life has been so tied up with food and weight, it's kind of scary to not have it, and work out who I am without it. I still do feel lonely, and I worry I'm boring, and people don't like me and all that shit. I also have many niggly life worries too...
I'm happy to be back in York.
Not far from my house. Daffodils growing along the bar walls.
Some photos from my walk back from the station. I love my city.
And of course FACON!
I was having bagels at my folks, but with fancy Nutella and cherry jam (so I could eat the same as my son!) and he also doesn't like mushrooms (or pastry! Must have picked up the wrong baby at the hospital! Haha!) but I couldn't find any facon when I was there, and that makes me sad, but I more than made up for it when I got home, and that makes me happy! Simple pleasures and all that.
Nothing beats having my daddy back. It's times like this where I remember, this is why!
It's been slow, frustrating and incredibly gradual, but finally I'm starting to reap the rewards.