Posts Tagged ‘unravelling’

Alright with being okay (the bit I forgot to mention)

Friday, September 10th, 2010

When I was 17, I nearly got well. After the initial plummet and once I’d got over the shock of treatment, I started, gradually, to build myself up again. I gained a bit of weight. I experimented with clothes. I had moments when life seemed a lot brighter. I flirted and giggled and did normal teenagery type things. The eating disorder remained – just not as much as before.

I’m not sure why and I can’t work out what happened; but, at some point, I got scared about being okay. I worried that I’d be nothing if I was ‘normal”, that I was letting myself go because I was letting myself enjoy life.

And so, I put the brakes down. Hard. I re-erected the walls and re-instated the rules. It was not okay to be okay.

We know what happened.

I ended my last post before I reached the end. The moment of insight that had been eluding me has finally clicked into place. This re-animation is the same as I felt at 17 – only this time I’m not afraid of it. It is alright to be okay.

The “I don’t care” voice

Saturday, August 28th, 2010

I am starting a new job on Wednesday. It’s the first time I’ve gone into a new job without the eating disorder to lean on. It was, I am beginning to recognise, a big part of my defence against the world and so I feel rather exposed venturing out on my own. If it all goes wrong, I will have nothing to make me feel better and nothing else to blame.

It is a little hard to acknowledge these thoughts.

I’ve been digging around rather uncomfortably to see if I can find out what they mean…only I already know the answer. They mean that I have to stop pretending that I don’t care.

Where I’ve *Really* Been Going Wrong

Tuesday, July 13th, 2010

A while ago, I wrote about my “am I still the same?” question. There is another old favourite whining around in my head at the moment. It’s the “are you angry with me?” one. I feel like a squeaky teenager who I’d like to give a good shake.

“Are you angry with me?” “What have I done?” “Don’t you like me anymore?”

Updating My Metaphorical Wardrobe

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

I have been carrying around some stuff for a while, without realising that it’s not actually mine.

I didn’t stop to consider where it came from until recently; in fact, I don’t think the question even entered my head. It has only emerged – upon closer inspection – that a lot of the fears and feelings I have assumed over the years do not belong to me.

It has been like getting home with the right black coat – only when you check the label, it’s wrong.

Existential Depression? Another Piece of the Puzzle

Monday, June 14th, 2010

I have been trying, for years, to make sense of my illness. To gain some sort of understanding of why and where it all began. It has been like piecing together a jigsaw puzzle when you’re not quite sure what the end image is, nor when the next piece will come.

Most of them have emerged during my recovery. It was hard, before then, to see beyond the food. Now, I follow the clashes, and the discussion and the flashes of insight; and the puzzle is coming steadily along.

I no longer expect it to be completed.

The Illness or Identity Debate

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010

A recent post title from one of my favourite blogs has been tugging on my thoughts this week, and I have realised that I need to unpick my reaction, though I’m a little scared of what I might find. The post was called ‘Anorexic vs having anorexia’; and it’s a distinction I’m finding hard to make.

This is difficult to admit.

I recognise that an eating disorder is an illness – and not an identity – but I appear to have accepted the label; and, now that it’s been ripped off, I’m finding the exposure hurts. It is strange that, although I would never introduce myself as an eating disorder and vehemently abhor the pain and damage it has caused, it seems preferable to being me.

Oh dear.

It is hard not to cast judgement on this statement and plaster it over with things I should say. There is, however, only one way of changing it: by finding out what’s underneath.

“Am I Still the Same?”

Thursday, May 20th, 2010

Last night, I bumped into someone from my past; and I shocked myself, when it came to saying goodbye, by nearly asking a question I’ve been grappling with for years: “am I still the same?

Am I still the same” is my “do I look fat in this?” question. The reassurance seeker that I continually seem to ask. “Do I look the same?”, and “Am I still the same”, or “How am I different?”. And please answer that I am not.

I have resisted, more recently, from externalising the discussion, but the variants have been tingling, slightly unpleasantly, on the tip of the tongue

Up until now, I haven’t bothered to unpick why this staying the same has been so important. What, exactly, I am staying the “same” as; and why it matters if I am “different”. There is a vague link to weight in there, and an outdated attempt at subtly asking the “do I look bigger?” question – but it is the underlying implication that has left me slightly more disturbed.

If it matters that I do not look different and is important to remain the same, then I am pretty much destined for failure; because if there’s one thing we can all be certain of, it’s change.

Not The Skinny One

Sunday, April 25th, 2010

I am a sibling.

One (the eldest) of three.

This blog is not about my siblings (who are, by the way, totally wonderful and I love them to bits); but I think it might be about a younger me’s reaction to them, so I’m going to include this.

It is important to distinguish between your reality and the alternative versions of reality; the stuff that belongs to other people, and that which belongs to you.

This bit is mine.

Earlier today, someone asked me what I liked to eat as a child. Hoping to access my pre-ED tastes, I decided that casting my mind back a little (lot) and exploring the things that I used to look forward to at mealtimes sounded like a good idea.

It was. I just didn’t find what I was expecting.


Sunday, April 11th, 2010

I thought that I had reached my limit and exposed all the deep, dark secrets of my eating disorder. That I had probed every sensitive area, and subjected each to my ridiculously exaggerated analytical-lens.

Nope. I still manage to shock myself.

They keep coming, thick and fast, like unpleasant discoveries or bruises that are so deep they are only felt when you push the exact spot.

This post’s on possession. It’s not something I’m particularly proud of; but it might lessen – this possessiveness – if it is acknowledged and moved on.


Wednesday, April 7th, 2010

I am ashamed of my isolation.

It is like a stamp of failure.

I can understand, when I’m in a logical frame of mind, that the circumstances have not been conducive to a bustling buzzing social life, and that maybe I need to give myself a break –

But it’s hard not to take it personally –

And it hurts that the problem might well be me.

Sabotaging My Self

Saturday, April 3rd, 2010

You know the alarm that kicks in when you’re about to do something stupid? The little sensor that is tripped when you step into a danger zone and are about to do something you’ll probably regret.

Mine is defunct.

The self destruct button is jammed down, by default, and I seem to have been programmed in reverse. Instead of stopping before I step over the line, I ramp up the speed on the descent and it takes someone else to step in and say


Stitched On Smiles

Monday, March 29th, 2010

Pull your socks up and put a smile on your face and be grateful for everything you’ve got, because what will people think when you’re walking around looking miserable.

This time, I don’t really care what people think and I can’t quite muster up the enthusiasm to pull up my socks. They will only slide back down again. I am tired of playing games. I appreciate that I might not be great company; but if you give me time to sort my head out, then I’ll probably get there in the end –

It’s when you trample over my feelings or sweep them under the carpet that we’re heading for disaster.

Back to the Beginning

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

I am having a bit of a hard time.

The stuff that I thought I’d sorted out years ago has made a reappearance; and, without the crutch of an eating disorder, I have been caught off guard.

This was not part of the deal and I am beginning to feel a little cheated. “If you lose weight then it’ll all be okay” has turned out to be a mixture of illusion, and blatant lie.


Sunday, March 14th, 2010

I have just lost another follower on twitter. This is confirmation that everyone hates me. On a different day, I probably wouldn’t notice; but today, there’s only one thing going round my mind, and it’s sucking in any evidence that it can find.

Nothing There

Thursday, March 11th, 2010

I think that I have writer’s block.

I can not order my thoughts, nor find the words to express them. Sentences come – and then go – before I’ve time to pen them down; and the conclusion of any chain of thought is always a few phrases out of reach.

The panic is bubbling now, like acid.

The Waste Land

Thursday, March 4th, 2010

This fragment goes with my fragments

I sat upon the shore
Fishing, with the arid plain behind me
Shall I at least set my lands in order?
London Bridge is falling down falling down falling down
Poi s’ascose nel foco che gli affina
Quando fiam uti chelidon
– O swallow swallow
Le Prince d’Aquitaine à la tour abolie
These fragments I have shored against my ruins
Why then Ile fit you. Hieronymo’s mad againe.
Datta. Dayadhvam. Damyata.
Shantih shantih shantih

T.S. Eliot. The Waste Land. V. What the Thunder Said. 423-433

The Fragments

Thursday, March 4th, 2010

I can’t work out whether I should be going forwards or backwards.

It is as though I stepped into a strange No Man’s land when I started getting ill, and closed the door on one life without pausing to look behind me. Before is strangely barren. Afterwards is a slideshow, spiked through with memories that scream.

I thought that I had frozen when time stopped, but separation is not that clean.

These come next.


Tuesday, March 2nd, 2010

I’m not sure that I have got to the bottom of things yet.

I am worried that I have been skirting the edge of something for a while. That I have been holding myself until I am brave enough to stare into the precipice.

I’m not sure what I will find there, should I peer over the rim. I’m worried that peering will not be enough. That it will, instead, lead to a tumble into the unknown. And then, who can say what I will uncover