H.O.P.E

H.O.P.E

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Lets fight this thing!


So I’ve been secretly having a bit of a relapse. 
There we go I said it, the cat is out of the bag, but neither the cat nor the bag is needed because it stops right here
I don’t know if it’s because I’ve been out of Exeter and surrounded by family or if I’ve just seen sense but I am not prepared to fall down this rabbit hole again. 
Things have been SO out of control recently that I predictably started using my one and only coping mechanism to get by again. Self-destruction. That way, in my head, nothing and no one can hurt me as much as I hurt myself, therefore if I am already hurting I am invincible. Wrong, but that is how my mind works. 
(Once again its crazy when you realise that an Eating Disorder really doesn’t have much to do with eating in the end)
 
I got wrapped up in the feeling of instability, that nothing in life was stable, people come and go and with it so does happiness and safety. It felt (and still does) that it was one loss after another, so what was the point?
If I had nothing to fight for then I may as well give in to the devil in my head, I didn’t have the energy to fight, I didn’t have the want or motivation. In fact having a small relapse gave me something to focus on other then the shit that was going on. Gave me a way out of dealing with things.  I didn’t have to think about stuff going on in Exeter, or my feelings of inadequacy and worthlessness, the death of my Nan, the final part of my divorce going through, the loneliness, the looming date of my incomplete dissertation, not being able to help people, not being e-bloody-nough…….the list is endless. I know right? Woe is me. 
Now don’t get me wrong this all sounds very thought out and planned. It wasn’t. Its only now upon reflection that I realise what was going on. No one plans to get into such a bad headspace that they turn to self-destruction to cope, no one.  It just happened, because it’s become habitual. I suppose when I first moved to Exeter, yes things were hard, but I was happy, therefore I didn’t need a coping mechanism. Now things are bloody tough and relapsing just happened, it’s the way I’ve coped for so long, turn inwards on myself.
Because of the things I have learnt during my inpatient stays, and because of all the amazing advice and love my friends and family have given me (I hate to name names because you are all amazing but Ella, Alice and Emily especially, you guys have seriously kept me safe, thank you) I can see that I can cope in other ways. 
I DO NOT have to resort to my eating disorder for security. 
I DO NOT have to show that I am struggling on my body, I have a voice and one I can use, one that if I find the right people will be listened to. 
I am turning this around because there is more to life. When I was coming home for the funeral this week I was worried that my family would notice that I had become a touch smaller in size, and it made me sad. I remember the time I came home and my brother said to me ‘Sami you’re looking really good, it’s so nice to not see you for a while then see you looking really well’. Now my brother is a man of few words, hugely sentimental and supportive but just not through words, so this meant a lot to me. In fact those words gave me a hell of a lot more sense of pride then seeing decreasing numbers ever could. It made me sad to think that when my family don't see me for a while they fear what I'm going to look like when I do eventually turn up.
So I have decided that, although it’ll be super uberly hard, I’m getting back on the recovery train.  

I will find other coping mechanisms. 

I will use my voice and speak up. 
I will not give in to the screaming in my head. 
I will fight and fight and fight. 
I DO have things to fight for, and on the days where I convince myself of otherwise, convince myself that my friends and family and the world of DMP would cope without me, then I will remind myself that if I can’t fight for that/them that I have the very basic, simple, thing to fight for. 

Myself. 
Whos with me?


Monday, March 17, 2014

Be Brave


So I said I had words in me, a blog about luck and people. Well here it is. 
I was lucky.
I was lucky. That’s right, lucky, me. I really truly was, yet I didn’t appreciate it. I read stories about people who suffered from an Eating Disorder, be it Anorexia, Bulimia, BED, EDNOs ect, and they were turned away at their GPs when they asked for help.

I hate to think that there are girls out there that read these and come up with the conclusion that in order for them to be able to ask for help that they have to be at deaths door. This is wrong, and it’s not always the case. 
I was lucky, I was listened too, you could be too.
When I moved to Bristol I went to my GP after my tutor asked me too. I was petrified. I cancelled and rebooked the appointment several times, but when I got there she listened. She didn’t quite understand she wasn’t a specialist but she referred me to the right people and saw me (well if I had showed up to appointments) every week. She listened even though at that point I wasn’t as deaths door. She even phoned my CPN and shouted down the phone to him that I needed to be seen. She saw that mentally I was struggling even if my body wasn't portraying it yet. It was my fault that whilst I waited to be seen I allowed myself to fall at a rapid rate.

My point is that when I first went my Eating Disorder was serious in my head, it was completely taking over BUT my weight wasn’t that low, yet I WAS listened to. I was believed. I was helped.  You could be too. Have the courage to go, to speak up, to demand help, because you DESERVE it. GPs don’t have to see you as a bag of bones to believe that you need help, I know, I wasn’t and I was believed. Grasp help in the early stages and fight back before it’s all your life and history becomes.

I was lucky I had a GP that listened and fought for me to jump waiting lists. I had a bunch of amazing people who saw potential in me. I had someone who effectively held me through the hardest journey of my life, who without her support I would never of made it through, who shared her story with me and inspired me to keep fighting, convinced me that there was hope. I had my family who constantly stood by me and never faltered in believing in me. I had an inpatient team who sat with me as I cried, who convinced me that I deserved the help they were offering. I had my best friend who was also fighting her own battle alongside me.

I was lucky, you could be too, be brave. 
 
I guess on a side bar I miss that help. Having people there for ME. When I discharged myself and moved to Exeter I naively thought that my past would not come with me. But it has. Now I feel more alone then ever. I wonder if coming here was even the best idea. Stuck in a city alone. I envy those with a treatment team because, even though it might not feel like it, someone is on your side and someone cares about what happens to you. I miss that. 
I find myself wanting to go back to that god awful time, not because I want my ED back but because I want the people it brought into my life back. I miss the unconditional support from those at Dance Voice. I miss being able to book a tutorial and have someone knock some sense into me and make me feel understood, less alone in the fight, like I mattered regardless of anything else, like I was worth something. I miss having a husband, who didn’t necessarily understand, but was THERE. I don’t know if I miss HIM or just the thought of having that certain someone. 
I guess because things are so difficult at the moment, with the feeling of having one loss after the other, the overwhelming feeling of being on my own has just made me miss the support that my ED brought. Being sick means people rush to your side to help you, being so ill that your in hospital brings friends out of the wood work that you haven't heard from in ages, people remind you that they care, that you actually aren't alone. 
Who would of thought that an Eating Disorder wasn't really based on eating at all eh? 

Ahh ok on a separate side bar, this doesn't mean I'm going backwards, I'm not, I'm just explaining the mind of someone with an ED. Just being open and honest. I'm not going backwards, I'm just simply struggling with my mind at the moment. 

Monday, March 3, 2014

-


I was planning on writing a last blog for EDAW on Sunday, one that involved an optimistic view on how not all GPs were clueless, how I was lucky with mine and you could be lucky with yours if you tried. (Seriously be brave, you can do this)
Bare with me guys that blog is in me, it’s still there waiting to come out but right now my words, heart and soul are all being filled with something else.
Last night my family received some news that I think is still painfully sinking in. We were told that our beloved Nan, Nanny Jean, had passed away.
It’s a surreal feeling knowing that someone you love so dearly is no longer with you, no longer able to talk or move or even give you one of those beautiful smiles.  It is so hard to believe that one-second they were here and the next gone forever.  It is so heart wrenchingly painful that it creates an automatic panic, a panic to preserve and protect all that is left, quick remember, capture her laugh, her smell, her embrace, her presence and bottle it so that the memory lasts forever. Quick before it’s gone…..before you lose it forever……capture it quick…..If only you could.
You sit there speechless searching and searching for the words to say to make things ok, to make things better, less painful, more manageable, and not even for yourself but for those around you. You watch as others that you love dearly fall apart and crumble, knowing, even though it cuts to your core, that there is absolutely nothing you can do.  There is no solution as there is no problem, a problem can be fixed, this is unfixable.
It’s a double wammy of loss and hopelessness.
The funny thing about grief is that when it’s settling in it’s almost like you wear it on you. It’s written all over you. Walking around in public its almost as if you expect people to look at you and just KNOW. The cloud of darkness you carry is so real and so prominent to you that it’s hard to believe that other people can’t see it suffocating you and weighing you down.
RIP Nan. You loved and were loved by so many.