DAY #48 FULL PORTIONS; Hedgehog…

Wholemeal toast x 2, butter.

Baked beans, jacket potato, butter, side salad.
Ice-cream (2 scoops).

Afternoon snack
‘Seabrooks’ crisps.

Savoury minced lamb, mashed potato, vegetable medley.
Plum crumble and custard.

Weetabix x 2.

…& the usual PINT of semi-skimmed milk.



Scorcher out there today… I’ve just ventured out into the mini courtyard, to be reminded of the most simple and available way to lift anxieties. About anything. Not just the sun, but being with air, sounds of trees, wind…

Away from all physical things made or manipulated by ‘us’… things made by people with feelings, judgments and thoughts.

Today I’ve been in one of those moods where I feel disconnected – lonely but frustrated for being lonely. The more time I have by myself the more time I have to ‘try and get my life together’ right? To learn what to do with my life, to experiment with my abilities, to study how to be ‘better with people’… so that when I start spending more time with people it will be easier? The panic that if I can put in this work, recovery will be easier. I’m terrified of getting ‘physically’ to that place, and still mentally hating myself/feeling inadequate/feeling childish/feeling purposeless. So the beaver of my brain is constantly prodding me to sort my life out if we’re going to be able to see enjoying and accepting proper food as a regular thing.

I feel frustrated because of where I feel my head is currently holding me hostage with ‘liking life’, ‘liking myself’ and ‘allowing myself to have confidence’, to feel free to ‘be myself’. As I’m really working hard with all of this (sometimes maybe I’m not WORKING hard enough but actually doing too much HOPING) it’s like when I feel a little gush of confidence or sudden ‘contentment’/acceptance of myself on this journey… my head pulls me back and I clam up again. I get thoughts like, but this isn’t you? You’re not ‘born’ to be talkative… it’s not natural to you to be ‘happy’… if you’re confident or happy that is big-headed and actually you’re more likely to have people turn away/dislike you, not LIKE you more…

So then my head tends to go back to ‘hedgehog’ mode. Where I mentally curl up. Keep my head down and not fight my mouth when it clams up and I shut down.

It’s weird. I woke up in a ‘happy’ (probably more ‘focused’, at ‘peace’ than happy) mood… and I notice that as soon as I start feeling different, the guilt shuts me down again. And by round about now, I feel lonely but I’m scared of the negative commentary from my head about being around people. At lunch, I felt like I allowed myself to not even worry about ‘talking to not seem boring’. I just wanted to get on, and yes it felt selfish and yes there was a bigger jug of shame filled, ready to spill in my head. But maybe it’s okay to have these days? So that you can reflect and push through it… dance through the sh*t and all that. I’m just scared that this way of thinking becomes a habit. And if this way of thinking persists when I have officially divorced Anorexia from a ‘physical’ point of view… how will I cope.

Being outside, and with what is the most untouched part of all of our lives, it almost feels like a weight is lifted. There’s no expectation. No judgment. No laws… no stereotypes… no calories…

…sometimes you need a very simple but DEEP reminder of this. The grass, the pavement, the soil, the road… it will accept you and hold you up regardless of your shape, weight, talents, abilities, qualifications, gender, sexuality, whether you’re clean-shaven or have a ‘Forbidden Forest’ under your pits. Whether you love or you hate Marmite.

There’s no time limits, no deadlines, no hierarchy, no body-shaming, no food-shaming, no money, no disappointment, no anger.

It gets you. Even when you don’t ‘get’ your own mind. When you don’t really know what you feel that day, so you’re left temporarily trapped in your own brain. You don’t need to explain or worry what anyone’s reaction will be. Because you don’t need anyone when you’re making contact with what’s always there for you…

There’s no pressure to communicate, I don’t have to worry if I’ll sound silly when I talk. Or if I’m talkative or entertaining enough. If I’m going to feel weak in a room full of confident, bubbly people. All things that feed into my Eating Disorder if I let it. It doesn’t tell me to hurry up and decide what to do with my career if I’m going to ‘deserve’ recovery, or to decide how to space out my meal choices through the week, so it feels ‘right’, or tell me I’m too lazy when I’ve eaten but have barely moved, or that I was selfish and greedy for not talking at the table at lunch.

My perfectionism too, takes a stroll round the park until I’m back with the ‘real world’ – which ironically, isn’t real. It’s all made by ‘us’.

Off for tea and taking my hedgehog with me.

One thought on “DAY #48 FULL PORTIONS; Hedgehog…

  1. Hello..I just have to tell you this post REALLY spoke to me! We’re “friends” on FB, but we haven’t actually communicated at all yet. Thank you for accepting my friend request, btw. I felt an immediate connection to you as you’re battling anorexia in a residential setting (at least that’s what we call it here in the US) the same as I have several times. More on that later perhaps….
    You put into words exactly how I feel when I’m outdoors in nature. You beautifully explained why going out for just a breath feels so incredibly freeing. Thank you for taking the time to do this! While I, too, enjoy writing I’ve not journaled in a few years, and this post reminded me why I need to return to putting feelings to paper AND to take the time to go outdoors because both free the spirit in different, but equally brilliant, ways, and we do deserve to give ourselves the time for both. We don’t have to spend hours a day doing each. Just a few minutes can make a huge difference. I liken the actions to releasing the cap of a soda bottle..loosening the cap just a bit still releases built up pressure. One can feel the release of pent up energy from the bottle top, just as we feel a similar release of pressure when taking deep relaxing breaths of fresh air.
    I “shared” your post to my FB; however, I set the post to private so only I can see it. I just want to be able to read it when I need a reminder of the importance of going outdoors because I usually don’t feel I deserve to do anything enjoyable. You know the feeling, unfortunately.
    Oh! We are so much alike in another way. LOL I, too, would ALWAYS be showered, well dressed, and have make-up and hair done perfectly before breakfast! No one else did this. I didn’t even realize until another resident pointed it out after I had been there a few weeks. They challenged me to not do my hair or my make-up on the weekends. It was sooo hard! But by my other residential stays I had let go of some my perfectionism. Not worrying about appearing “perfect” actually allowed me to do much needed deeper work, so I challenge you to do the same…to make a pact with someone that you won’t do your make-up on the weekends or something of that nature. What do you think? Perhaps you’re already doing this. I’m so sorry for writing so much! Thank you for taking the time to read it as I know you’re quite busy now. I’m going to try to follow your blog regularly if you don’t mind. Perhaps we can assist one another in our journeys. Wish you the best! If you don’t mind sharing, where do you live, as in country? Some of the words you use, we use very differently in America.

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