Wholemeal toast x 2, butter.
Meatballs in tomato sauce, hash browns, sweetcorn.
Jam sponge and custard.
Afternoon snack (SELF-CATERED)
Whipped greek-style yoghurt with a lemon compote.
Chicken mayo in pitta bread, sweetcorn, crackers and salad.
Big bag of ‘sweet and salty’ popcorn!
…& the usual PINT of semi-skimmed milk.
…now you probs think I live out of a suitcase. It feels like I do… but each time I unpack that suitcase, regardless of where I am, it feels like I’m stepping into a new territory to test where I’m at with my Eating Disorder. Fresh surroundings to detach myself from any emotional attachment with my surroundings and approach a new space of air, to breathe and to think. I do sometimes feel like I’m trying to run away from the haunting of my ‘old’ lingering thoughts; perhaps why I always keep myself busy, and find it therapeutic to not stay in one place for too long…
So I’m currently sat on a black chair, at a black desk (I know right? What a creative description, JK Rowling doesn’t know what she’s up against…) upstairs in one of the TWO bedrooms in an apartment (bargain last minute deal!)… which I only booked after lunch today. But not for ‘reflective leave’ this time… it’s all completely ‘with the treatment plan’. And thanks to a 1kg gain over the week, I’m on target and again very alllllllmost at the point I can begin the maintenance period of my recovery. Scary Mary. A very hairy, scary Mary.
I just hadn’t planned to go on my weekend leave until tomorrow… when I’m boarding the corker of a ‘Megabus’ (£12.50 return from Leeds?!?!) to London. Now a 4 and a half hour journey, and the whiff of smelly sandwiches being launched into the air of a stuffy, busy coach could probably be forgiven for that price. The reason for the mini London adventure is that I was lucky enough to get two free tickets to the ‘Cake and Bake Show’ on Sunday, when there’s lots of stalls a few celeb chefs gathered together, all for the purpose of celebrating good food. More specifically, obviously CAKE! But the best part is, my youngest sister’s now coming with me, so I’m very much looking forward to spending a bit of quality time with her – spontaneous time, not dictated by times around food, and actually getting to eat DELICIOUS food together.
It’s a bit of a gamble with attending this food show, I might add… but I’m confident that I’m ready to test the waters with where I’m at in my head. Going to a food show, likely means stumbling into a swarm of ‘free tasters’… (which during my close relationship with Anorexia would… well, it wouldn’t have even ‘existed’ as something to even consider… it may as well have been a swarm of bees I was walking into… dangerous to my mind and my emotional control) but I dare to say I’m quite excited to have this window of opportunity flap open. And I’m glad I can experience something like this now, to make-up for the memories I have from a few years ago.
If it’s anything like the ‘Good Food Show’ that I attended 6 years ago, the only thing I’ve been to like that before really, with my ex-long-term-boyfriend. At this point, I really, really, was in a stolen place with Anorexia, the first time I’d accessed outpatient services, but I was deteriorating, whilst of course feeling so safe and secure in my head. And I remember feeling so stupidly anxious, scared, sad and disappointed in myself as I wandered around, pleading with my eyes for my boyfriend to still enjoy it and ‘get stuck in’ and forget how much of a party-pooper I was being. I wandered around all these free foodie bits scattered like gold my Eating Disorder wouldn’t let me afford…
…we sat on a bench at the time I’d allowed myself to eat lunch, and I ate the salad I’d pre-packed and brought along. I genuinely remember feeling so absorbed in that salad, actually savouring and enjoying it as I think I’d began to forget what all the stuff I used to like and allow myself tasted like, and watching people ‘living’ around me, whilst I observed. Sat in the middle of so many people passionate about food – and ironically, I was too, but the difference was they were allowed to and I wasn’t.
But back to the reason I’m in the apartment… all this space which feels so weird, but lovely (indulgent/guilty but dismissing them thoughts, thank youuuuu) to have alone… I felt myself getting caught up in social anxiety and feeling overly-self-conscious on the ward, after the usual long, busy but productive week, being around so many people… I felt I needed a bit of headspace alone.
Sometimes it’s okay to recognise our limits and take a step out. We all need that reflection time – whether you’re a natural ‘people person’ or not… the food thing’s going to plan and everything too; the main reason I chose an apartment and not a ‘hotel’, was so that I could stick to what I had planned and use the little kitchen area, as I’m taking meals pre-packed tomorrow, purely because of the travelling. This is where sometimes it’s hard to distinguish whether you’re accessing a disordered ‘rigid’ way about food, or if it’s purely just for practical benefits. Which in this case, I’m pretty sure it is.
So I’ve got my pasta cooked, my eggs boiled (once I worked the ceramic hob, anyway – what is this posh tosh? I’m not complaining, it just makes me feel like a pauper), and thanks to the fridge means I can keep it all fresh for tomorrow!
The sad thing is, what excited me most was the laid out display of free drink bits and biccies. (don’t deny you’ve ever felt this excited biccie feeling too…)
We’re not talking your Bill and Ben custard creams, either (which I’d be quite content with, for the record…) but posh bloomin’ shortbread. 4 packs, which will be taking an oopsy-daisy slide into my suitcase. They sat neatly in a pattern alongside a cappuccino shot for the coffee machine, and a porridge pot. It’s the little things! I love a surprise freebie.
I hope I can keep this up with the food-taster idea on Sunday… ! There is that fear of losing control, of course, but this is where a bit of self-trust comes in and reviewing what I value MOST over listening to that rusty, dusty old Eating Disorder…
…now m’off to eat my popcorn…
Before I get tuck myself into this mystery bed (that, let’s be honest strangers have had sex in…) Sorry Nanna and Grandad, if you’re reading this.
That is the pink elephant in the room of my brain whenever I stay at hotels!! La-la-laaaaa, not listening. Note to self: the coffee machine, and the free posh biccies make up for it…