I had a very interesting therapy session today. I was panicking like a lot a lot after a rough few days (following on from a rough few weeks…) and just really did not want to speak. All the things we usually go through – food, behaviours, self-injury, the boy, the fam, friends, uni etc. – are all things I don’t want to deal with right now. I’ve not got any conclusions in my head and cannot decide upon any actions so I’m doing what I do best. I’m avoiding it all through destructive ways of numbing it out and hoping that at some point in the future all these things will fix themselves. Not productive I know, but I just didn’t want to process any of this right now. Whilst in the session, I thought it was very unproductive, but the few things the therapist managed to drag out of me actually gave me a lot to think about. I’m doing some serious thinking in general at the moment, generally along the lines of “Is it better to know/see/generally talk to people/have any relationships even if all I do is upset people and make them sad? Or is it better to get out of everyone’s lives so that they can be happier (as I naturally assume they would be) without me around?” I know this is entirely broken logic but I can’t stop my mind from believing that I make everyone else’s lives less good. I feel like I owe it to people to not talk to them.
The therapist asked me to think about what would make me happy rather than what’s best for others and I was actually surprised to find that I really don’t know. I’m so used to framing myself as a burden that I’ve forgotten what I want out of relationships because I’m just so busy trying to come up with ways to earn them. I have no idea what makes me happy or what it is that I value or want to gain through relationships so I have no idea if they are healthy for me or not. I never stop to think about whether others are in the wrong, I just assume that if I feel negatively about something, it’s my fault because I’m obviously always rubbish thus always wrong. Thinking about what I actually want and need from a relationship to be happy doesn’t come into my thought processes at all. And this doesn’t just stop with relationships. It’s an incredibly far-reaching attitude – I literally have no idea what I like or want. What foods do I genuinely enjoy purely for pleasure of taste and eating? I enjoy things that seem “healthy” because of the anorexia and sometimes I enjoy things that seem “unhealthy” as they make me feel rebellious, but when it comes to knowing what foods I will actually enjoy and want to eat, I freak out something rotten and walk away distressed, often chosing to not make a choice thus just avoiding the hard thing. This is especially obvious with cake. Every week I try to buy a cake and look at all the cakes and try to imagine which one I would actually like and then cannot for the life of me work it out. It’s all far too many numbers and tastes and textures and I freak out and don’t buy cake. I think I’d like date and walnut cake, but do I only want it because dates and walnuts are more healthy than chocolate? Is cheesecake too much for my meal plan? Do I like fruity things or caramelly things or creamy things? What would bring me the most enjoyments so I won’t waste the opportunity? Literally every time I go to the supermarket, I spend at least 10 (more like 20) minutes looking at cakes before I decide that I don’t want to decide. And uni as well. Does studying make me happy or do I do it because I feel like I have to and somehow it’ll make me a better person?
This even goes as far as just what to do. I never know what to do when I have free time. I just don’t know what will make me happy, so I just assume that nothing will and try to find ways of passing the time until I fall asleep. I try to think about what to do and just hit a wall. What do I even like? Do I like watching T.V. or films or D.V.Ds? Or do I actually think reading will make me happy? Do I actually want to read the Guardian, or do I only want to appear smarter than I am? Do I find the news interesting? Do I want to play some sort of video game? Or would baking make me feel happy? Or getting my Lush on and having a serious self-care session? Maybe doing some yoga? Do I follow such rigid routines about when and where and on what day to do anything and everything because I like them or do they make me feel less anxious but only feed my ridigity in the long run? I have no idea and to be honest, don’t even think about it anymore, so end up doing nothing at all most of the time but beating myself up for not using my time wisely and wasting life and being boring and rubbish. I am rubbish because I don’t do enough, but never stop to think what it is that I actually want to be doing more of. It’s not even that I’m not happy (I don’t expect my depression to lift through knitting or anything), it’s just that I have no concept of what things might have the possibility of being something I actually want to do. I don’t know what I need or know anything that might make me feel better.
Although I’m not going to lie, I think for right now I’m going to mostly focus on what I want from relationships as I have some immediate thinking to do in that area (I really need some advice but have absolutely no idea who is appropriate to talk to), this has given me a lot to think about and probably for a really long time. Where do I even begin? How do you work out what makes you feel better? And maybe even happy? How do you go about working out what’s good or bad for you, not others or some perceived ideal of what you should be? Seriously any tips would be good right about now.
On other news, the dietician is not best pleased with me. Me and my fluctuating pound that I’m really struggling to not drop below. I’ve kinda grown attached to this pound and my weight in general – afterall, I’ve been actively maintaining for over a month now, creeping in and out of the very bottom of the “healthy” range. I don’t want to actively lose, but the fear of gaining is causing me to cut further and further back on my intake, then suddenly panicking and trying to up my calories, whilst simultaneously whittling my previously super metabolism away. Basically, this has been going on for to long, I can’t kid anyone (including myself) into believing this is a healthy weight for me. I need to up my calories and if this continues, the likelihood of actually relapsing get higher and higher. If I can’t do it myself by my next weigh in (with the psychiatrist on Monday) then I start losing a say in what I eat. I am trying really hard to get my calories back up, but I’m not confident in how consistent I can be at this point. She also has made me commit to trying to stop weighing myself so much (every day, at least once) as it’s just making eating that much harder. I almost didn’t today, then got overwhelmed by fear and did. Try again tomorrow I guess. I would suggest someone hid my scales, but last time I did that I just went and bought more within a week. That’ll always be an option so I have to just stop for myself I think. She suggests down to once a week for now, with the aim to be not at all. She also wants me to be less reliant on dietetics appointments as reassurance and permission to eat enough, so we’re cutting down our sessions to once every three weeks. I think now might be a bad time for that, but I am relieved – at least I won’t be weighed for a while so to my disordered brain it means I have more time to manipulate my weight. Ah well, got to try to learn to actually trust the dietician at some point so it may as well be now. Plus I’m able to call her if things don’t go so well and she can give me some help and advice, and if my calories drop, she can send out a nurse to check the damage. This all relies on my be honest and open about my problems and concerns though and everyone knows eating disorders love to hide, so this level of honestly might be something I struggle with if the going gets tough. I don’t know.
I really should do another eats report, but at the moment I’m not eating new or exciting things. Whenever I stop eating enough, I fall back on the same foods. Right now I’m eating the same things at each meal every single day (they’re only not the same if I leave part of it out…). Hopefully I can get my calories up again and I’ll have loads of fantastic foods to report. It’s sad this happened over Christmas as it means I basically missed out on Christmas eats, but it’s done now. Hopefully I’ll report of the good new things soon!