I am home. I think that the sea was quite good really, but I guess it always is. We went bird watching, and to Norwich, and around the beautiful town in the lovely cold weather. I ate lots of scary things and other people cooked for me. I painted some plates and mugs and had a nice, relaxing time. I might do a proper blog on the whole thing, but right now I really need to vent. This is a self-indulgent post so don’t read it if you think it’ll really annoy you. I guess it might also be kinda triggering, so again, don’t read if it’s likely to do that for you. Sorry.
I’m unsure of how I came out of the whole thing really. I did challenge myself a lot and shake up my routines a lot but right now I feel really disheartened. I tried so hard to believe all the things the treatment team have been telling me about food and eating and weight gain and have been trusting them and my body to do the same thing as other people’s bodies. I don’t think I ate obscenely or anything. I had a few treats, but mostly stuck to my normal eating and I walked a lot more than usual so I didn’t think that would be an issue. It was really hard but I challenged myself and stuck to my goals and I thought I did ok.
This is going to be a massively moan post from here on in so sorry about that.
What I have learnt from this trip is that if I don’t count calories, eat fish and chips once, have more meat than usual, stop weighing myself and don’t prepare my own meals, I gain three pound in four days. I’ve done rough calculations for the days I was there and realistically, I don’t actually think I over ate from my meal plan. I think I ate probably the exact right amount. I had a range of calories, some days more, some less, but it should even out at about right. The only difference was that I was less controlling and ate foods that I’m scared of. Gaining more than three pound in a week is cause for concern (says the dietician) and I managed it in four days. Anymore weight in the next three days and what I’m doing is unhealthy and I actually have to eat less. I don’t even know how that is possible mathematically. I know weight fluctuates, but my weight has a tendency to not fluctuate back down unless I restrict. It know I need to gain weight, but slow and steady is the aim really, not all in three weeks, which at this rate it really looks like it will be. I actually cannot cope with this at all. I feel incredibly large. Very very large. I look noticeably bigger. I feel hideous. I don’t want anyone to see me because I’m so embarrassed. I don’t know why I always gain weight so quickly when I actually follow what is asked of me. Why is my body different from everyone elses? I know I can’t really, but I do feel the extra tissue under my skin crawling. I feel so completely disgusting and keep bursting into tears. Why do I gain weight so easily? Why can’t I do what other people do and just gain a normal amount? How comes people find it so hard to gain anything yet I seem to do it excessively? I’m so angry at myself for believing in my treatment team. I was right all along. My body cannot be trusted to do what is expected, my brain cannot be trusted to work out the right food without the use of numbers, the foods I fear will make me gain a ridiculous amount of weight over night do actually do that. And the thing is, if it was right for everyone, my team wouldn’t tell me these things weren’t true. It’s my body that doesn’t work; I don’t know why I trusted them over what I already knew was true about my body – it is mine after all and I know it pretty well. The psychologist said I had to gain evidence of the legitimacy of my fears. Well I have and I was right.
And the thing that gets me is that I wasted so much time on my trip trying to deal with the anxiety and panic of the change from my comfort zone. I told myself that this would be good for me and was worth the anxiety. I didn’t have to do anything to challenge myself. I could have gone and relaxed and cooked all my own meals, weighing every mouthful and counting every calorie. Except I thought it’d be worth it because then I’d learn to trust myself a little. I had panic attacks over food, couldn’t sleep at all and spent a not small proportion of my time there crying and desperately trying to get some comfort from my coping mechanisms because I had to learn to trust my body and myself and my team. I made myself have a worse time than I needed to because I thought it’d be healthy for me. I could have had a better time. All I have learnt is that I can’t trust any of it.
I’ve come home from the trip hating myself and plagued by the need to lose weight. I really really want to and I know I can. Apparently my body really isn’t one of those bodies that can just eat and behave in an expected way. I shouldn’t have gone and I shouldn’t have eaten that much food and I cannot live with my mistake right now. I’m too angry at myself. I’m obviously one of those unheard of people who need to monitor every fucking mouthful in order to be healthy. Why did I think I could eat fish and chips and be fine? That was obviously completely wrong – there’s a reason I haven’t had it in way over a year. And other people cannot be trusted to make meals which are appropriate for me. I already knew that – it didn’t need testing.
And I know this is irrational but I really think people will judge me and think I’m fat and disgusting and obviously gross. People will see me and think “fucking hell – how did she get fat so quick? That’s obscene”. Friends, family, the boy, my team, everyone. Everyone will know that my body is horrible on the inside and needs to be controlled and judge me for not controlling it and being so idealistic about everything. My body feels physically offensive.
I did what I was supposed to do and got results that just back up everything I feel about myself and my body. And what really gets me is that I’m actually surprised by this. I actually thought that maybe I was wrong. I thought that maybe I could do these things and get the expected results of around a pounds worth of weight gain. I’m really disappointed. I didn’t want to be right.
So now I can honestly say I have no idea what I’m going to do from here. I weighed out all my food today. I bought fat-free yogurt so that I can feel better. I walked a lot. I’m pushing back meals and I’ve missed parts out. I’ve designated a shelf in my food cupboard for foods I know I’m not going to eat anymore. So far, none of this is damaging to my recovery. I haven’t committed myself to eating less, but I’m making steps too. I have tried today to keep up my calories, but I’m not sure how the day will end up. Tomorrow is anyone’s guess.
I don’t know what I want. I don’t want to be ill but I don’t want to be this either and I don’t know what I’m most scared of anymore.