Very literal title today.
So I’m eating again, and feeling pretty mentally rejuvenated. I think I get stuck a lot. I find something that works and I just keep doing it till it stops working, but instead of addressing it I end up freaking out and going backwards because I’ve stopped moving forwards. I need to shake things up, work on getting a new attitude in mind and find new ways to push myself. I think I need to start challenging my behaviours more and finding ways to introduce a little more normality into my relationship with food, and my relationships with other people. So my new approach is that I want my body to be healthy and I want to get to a normal weight and it is only a symptom to want to be smaller, not me, and I have to argue with this symptom along with all the other symptoms, rather than indulge in them as it will only make this harder. Now there are challenges. This week is my week to stop weighing fruit. Fruit comes in one portion or in packs with weight on them so I’ll know when I’ve finished them how much I’ve had. Plus calories in fruit (even bananas) are pretty negligible. The other challenge is to eat breakfast before 10am, and to eat it in the kitchen rather than hidden away. I figure that it’d be a good meal to start with in the kitchen because I hate being seen eating, but no one is around at that time of day, plus before 10am isn’t such a ridiculous idea I don’t think. New week I’m hopefully going to stop weighing vegetables and having my lunch in the kitchen. Scary scary. Also, I’ve been making some crafty signs and little panic cards to help me when I’m really struggling and to keep my goals in mind, keeping me on tack mentally and keeping my aims in mind, not the aims of my illness. Today I am going to buy more pritt stick and wrapping paper to continue this mission till I have all bases covered. And I went to tesco and brought some ice-cream I’ve been avoiding due to calorie content, and some cream crackers. Trying to break through the idea that nutritional information is more important when choosing than whether or not you might like something. Actively challenging anorexic thoughts and behaviours left right and centre, but there are still so many left unchalleneged. But at least my weight and body aren’t bothering me too much. Sometimes I think I look hideous, but sometimes I think “this is ok, my body isn’t bad. What’s all the fuss about? I could gain a few inches!” Although I’m holding on to this right now, I reserve the right to freak out again. Yesterday I put on my really lovely jeans straight from the wash and they fit! For a whole 10 minutes before they stretched again and I realised that I need to grow to fit my lovely jeans. There’s some motivation – growth for the lovely jeans.
Not that they’re lovely anymore. I fell over. They have a hole in the knee now. And so does my knee, and my palms. I wasn’t paying attention and was pretty anxious as I was visiting a friend (to steal music! Yuss!) and tripped on the curb. My left knee is super swollen and my hands are all crampy and red and swollen too. I was born clumsy and am the least graceful person I know, so I fall over a lot. From my comprehensive experience, this was probably a fall of 7/10 intensity. Yesterday I would have said 6/10, but the pain I’m in today makes it higher, even though there is little obvious damage and it didn’t bleed very much. Terrible really though as I was super nervous about seeing this gentleman (he is really nice and I’ve known him all my life, but people scare me even though I have no reason to be scared. I’m easing in to people though, getting used to them through seeing safe people. My closet friends are the least safe as I have the most to lose in those situations. Sorry), so already a bit panicky, then I fell and entered full on panic-shock. I couldn’t think, my breathing was all over the place. I had to sit for a few minutes to calm down, but was still shockingly adrenaline rushed when I got there so don’t remember much apart from talking really quickly and being an idiot. Really didn’t help with the dissociation I feel between my head and body. Ergh. It feels like maybe that whole set of memories didn’t really happen, but I have the bruises and the iPod to prove it, so there is evidence it did. It hurts to walk, especially upstairs.
In other news, on Saturday I went for a lovely forest walk with the brother (I know I know – compulsive walking, who’d have known that would be an issue?). He brought me a Costa for the journey and I had a super lovely cherry and almond muffin and a skinny gingerbread latte (in my picture!). I think I have a new top latte. Yum yum. It was really nice though. We talked lots and lots about some of my present life concerns and the world was pretty as it was slowly getting dark and everything was beautiful. It’s been a while since I ventured to the forest. It’s really comfortable. Plus I love ducks! So much! They were all quacking and going to sleep and settling. It was fun. Then I came home and made playdough so I have something to squeeze when I’m anxious in the hope that I’ll stop having little cresent moon bruises in the palms of my hands from all the tensing. Made me feel very childlike, but totally fun. The green smells like peppermint, the yellow like lemon, the orange like orange and the red like… vanilla (there isn’t a strawberry flavoring in tesco). I brought more food colouring and flavorings in tesco yesterday as their baking range is buy 2 get 1 free at the moment just so you know. I really love playdough.
Finally, fingernails! Hair and fingernails are an issue when you’re malnourished. They become brittle and weak, breaking easily, and your hair starts falling out in clumps. My hair is improving slowly and less falls out now, but my nails! Wowzas! I always used to bite my nails and the skin around them up until about 7 months ago maybe, so I’ve never had them long before that. Up until about 2 weeks ago, I didn’t really notice them, but my gosh! Now they are so long, and they don’t break all the time! They are strong and holding their own in the world. Seriously amazing stuff. I could claw people if I wanted to (not that I do). I didn’t know fingernails could be this way. This is no joke either. I’m really getting attached to them now. I’m constantly noticing the way they feel when they press on things, even as I’m typing this. And they are no longer blue! This may seem ridiculous but it’s actually kind of exciting. Obviously, pre-anorexia I had no idea about the physical side of malnourishment. It’s not just being a bit tired and run down – your whole body changes. Your circulation gets worse and worse so your extremities tend to spend a lot of time being numb and blue. All your energy is diverted to keeping you alive and all your organs start to slow down, shutting off anything unnecessary. You start eating yourself – muscles, organs, even your brain and heart – and in this scenario, fingernails are really not a priority. Well I guess my state of nourishment is vastly improving as now I have fingernails that can face even the most tricksy opponents like ring pull cans! Obviously, it’s more important that I’m not at critically underweight anymore and it’s pretty unlikely that I’ll have any sudden, malnourishment induced medical emergency (though I still have a way to go weight wise till I’m healthy and stable, mentally and physcially), but although that’s great, you don’t really notice it on the regs. But fingernails! Now that is concrete evidence that my body is happier! Now if only I could start connecting my head to my body and start feeling like it’s mine rather than feeling like it acts on autopilot without my consent, maybe I could appreciate all the other happiness within my body. I have a lot of difficultly connecting myself and struggle with feeling like my actions aren’t mine. My body is disconnected from my reality and I cannot listen to what it has to tell me. But fingernails I can see, fingernails are objective, evidence based fact. Therefore, today I celebrate fingernails.
Today, I think I might try to do a very belated hallowe’en eats report for Sophie – trust me it was a really good day. Plus pumpkin is still seasonal!