Progress, Not Perfection…

Malted wheat cereal. (with semi-skimmed milk)


Carrot and lentil soup, with mixed in butterbeans.
Mixed salad, pumpkin seeds and chutney.
‘Max’ paprika crisps (handful from a multipack).
Toasted sunflower seed roll, with butter.

Carob-topped seeded ‘9 bar’.

Cumberland sausages, jacket potato, mixed veg.
Blueberries and pear in cherry yoghurt.

2 x toasted fruit loaf, with butter.

“Aim for progress, not perfection…”

I’ve heard this flung about between mouths and places… but I’ve dismissed it as a cliché. After all, I already know ‘perfection’ is not a thing, as there’s no rules to anything being right in this world. There’s too many grey areas.

I’ve never actually listened and used the saying to empower my own life. But now it makes sense.

Last night, I did slip up. I binged and purged BUT, as there’s not only so many grey areas, but also so many SHADES of grey… in comparison to what it looked like and felt, and my actions before and after it, it was completely different to times before, when I gave in to that urge far too early, and gave in far too soon.

It doesn’t sound like a big deal to anyone who hasn’t been there – but the big difference this time, last night, was that I delayed the urge for soooooo much longer. I felt myself rise to the surface and fight my thoughts. I could feel them niggling when I sat on the sofa with my chocolate bar – tasting the chocolate it unearthed a volcanic splurge of uncertainty, and I could feel the associations with my thoughts around what I was tasting with binge-purging. My brain was trying to reject it as food I should and deserve to keep down. I’m so used to tasting it, for too short a time, often after other types of foods that help get it back up again. Apologies to anyone who is triggered by this, but I’m saying it purely for the sake of awareness – chocolate is so difficult to get rid of – I only allow myself to eat it during very desperate times usually, following the same order of foods.

So yes, this is all very bizarre, but as I tried to squeeze out the seductive thoughts, I genuinely, I think, did enjoy moments of tasting my refrigerated Cadbury chunks.

Again, may not seem a big deal to many – but I sat, watching telly for 20 minutes afterwards, had a hot drink, brushed my teeth and went to bed. And laid there, tossing and turning for a couple of hours, extremely aware of my urges that felt like electric shocks through my brain. It’s almost like this obsessive thought telling me that I won’t be able to cope, or get to sleep without the relief of being sick, and taking control of the feeling in my stomach.

I felt so close but so far away all at once, from not giving in that night. But I feared that the distress wouldn’t stop, and even though logically, if I laid there and laid there, eventually, I would nod off, my brain was in panic mode and subconsciously I suppose there was part of me that didn’t believe I could cope.

So I did, but it was a much smaller binge. It felt like I smoked 2 fags instead of the whole packet in one go, to put things into perspective…

…I’ve realised that delaying a habit you’re desperately wanting to ‘give’ up, is a brain-training exercise that will hand you the ability to work towards that eventual goal.

Even though after that binge-purge, I felt such a let down, with this whole fundraising project, and I had that fleeting feeling of hopelessness, and the fear of waking up with that hangover sense that occurs to often… in the morning, I felt empowered by the progress I psychologically felt in myself. I’d committed with hope, instead of giving in at the first hurdle.

Up until recently, as it’s got so bad again, I felt basically 100% controlled, and compelled as soon as the urge came… I’ve not usually made it until supper, let alone sat there trying not to listen to poking thoughts, never made it to brush my teeth, and DEFINITELY not made it to laying in bed. Absolutely not, for 2 hours.

That to me, is progress. And I stuck to my meal-plan today, despite it all.

For once, I’m proud of myself.


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