Bran flakes. (3/4 bowl – will explain tomorrow)
Wholemeal toast x 2, butter. (bit left – will explain tomorrow)
Savoury minced lamb, Yorkshire pudding, mashed potato (bit left – will explain tomorrow), sweetcorn.
Ice-cream (2 scoops).
Baked beans, jacket potato, butter, side salad.
Plum crumble and custard.
…& the usual PINT of semi-skimmed milk.
As I sip my ‘Cookies & Cream’ flavoured tea, I can solemnly say I am SOLD to the white cow liquid stuff. Milk. All hale the stuff…
I can’t begin to EXPRESS how much I hated the idea of adding ‘unnecessary’ calories to beverages, 4 weeks ago and beyond. ESPECIALLY if it was a green or god-forbid a blue lid… I’m pretty sure, across the globe there is an ‘Anorexic’ traffic light system for milk. Blue-green-red in replacement of the usual red-amber-green order… don’t bother even revving your engine on blue. The ‘whole’ and tasty stuff.
Anorexia likes to skimp on calories wherever it can. Just like it likes to skimp at life. One thing I am leaving at the rusty door, immediately after discharge is that ‘c’ word – the one in the first sentence of this paragraph. Unless I become a food scientist, it can jog on. Using it again in my daily life, would be like putting out a fish-shaped cracker for a cat… Anorexia would smell the opportunity and pounce in a jiffy.
I don’t dismiss counting the pesky things for everyone, but for people in recovery from an Eating Disorder I think it can be a lethal sticky weed that attaches itself to your clean jumper if you’re not careful. I won’t open a can of controversial worms and say I don’t think it’s healthy for ANYONE to count them (which I do); what about learning how to visually judge and trusting your food knowledge?
I know from my own self-awareness that counting the ‘c’s would be like giving an ex drug-addict a cheeky sniff of crack. Yeah, maybe I might be strong enough by the end of this journey to take up the odd calculation and look at the ‘c’ contents now and then for reassurance. But is it worth the risk… ? I know it could quickly become the sun to my world, the centre-piece of my daily decisions if I’m not careful. So it’s best to erase it from my life altogether.
It needs to be a tiny star in the solar system. I’ll know it exists but my life will no longer revolve around it.
I could literally hear Anorexia’s heart being torn in two right then. The bible for life – gone just like that. Scarily freeing for me though, I have this feeling that it’s going to be like a toddler being let off the reins for the first time… ! No, I don’t count them in hospital, but that I guess is through the reassurance of being given a meal-plan and consistent support from the dietician. It’s when food preparation/judgment comes down to me and my own thoughts that things will get put to the test.
Jumping back to the milk; that’s why there’s always a bit of beauty to shine out of a shit situation. Being re-united with your taste-buds whilst an inpatient in recovery, and appreciating all the little quirks and flavours, you ordinarily wouldn’t as much otherwise! Now I look forward to my comfort-cuppa pit-stops throughout the day. As much so as a Ferrari getting a tyre changed in the Formula One…
…I was told this morning that we have no Nutri-Grain bars left, which is what I had planned for supper tonight. Again, I could recognise that I must have moved forward in my head as I didn’t panic immediately. My head now recognised OTHER options. I’m finally freeing up some room for colour, in that black-and-white world of Anorexia… !
I still haven’t decided what I am going to do about the choice though. My natural reaction would be to go back to Weetabix, which is my safest option that I had originally planned Nutri-Grain instead of, as a challenge anyway. BUT as I’d rather save my milk for an extra couple of comfort cuppas, I’m not allowing that choice to sit in the throne tonight.
Last night, on ‘biscuits’ – another challenge to vary up my originally ‘safe’ supper choices, I have to admit I had surprised myself. It usually occurs that whenever I feel completely miserable/negative and especially alone, my Eating Disorder thoughts feel more unavoidable. I become reliant on their security and control. And after having a mega shitty day yesterday, when asked what biscuits I would like – Anorexia shone it’s lazer beam right on the lowest calorie option. But I felt my the little boat in my brain cells trying to make the decision – sail down a DIFFERENT river. It was a beautiful river; it felt a lot more free, calm and relaxed.
As whacky as that sounds, I guess this new river was me going with my ‘gut instinct’ and what ‘I fancied? What????????????? You mean I allowed myself to listen to it DESPITE feeling upset/angry/lonely all day? You mean it’s alright to eat things for TASTE preference, even if you haven’t felt on top of the world or felt like you’ve made any important contribution to the world today???
So yes I picked a higher calorie pack of biscuits than my usual ‘safe’ option. This sounds like not much of a biggy, but because of my mood during the day, to me I know this was a strong, solid boot up the arse to my Eating Disorder. About not associating my self-worth with food or my negative thoughts. And rationalising that the handful of calories’ difference between biscuits (which I reminded myself are of LITTLE importance in my real world) are inferior.
I’m still unsure about what to pick tonight for supper… I had this spontaneous brainwave earlier saying f*** it, advance on yesterday’s achievement and go with a choccie bar challenge now you have this new opportunity open to you. Prove to yourself AGAIN that you don’t have to do anything extra-special to deserve the right to enjoy a bit of chocolate. But I don’t think I’m quite that daring yet. I have one planned in for Monday night…
…bring on the Kit-Kat.
(Anorexia reading this back – buy yourself a yacht while you’re at it… ! What makes you think you can afford to eat such a thing????)
When would I ever judge anyone else for eating a flipping 4-fingered choccie-covered wafer bar? An Eating Disorder does not make sense and it’s rules are contradictory.
It’s as though the ‘c’ word is a wallet of pennies in my pocket and I need to take out a loan to deserve it…
…I can listen but I can also accept that I am not going to respond.