I have not posted recently, I’ve either been too happy and preoccupied or too lethargic and down. I have had constant but, intermittent distractions, a boy, to be frank. There are counter processes in my head that are creating this up and down, my anxiety is pretty intense at times – today it has been an even “PANIC” and I haven’t quite crashed; this has meant that I could go through some of my normal relaxation practices that, I have found over the years, tend to calm me and can create a situation that feels much more rational.
This is basically my angry/happy song, you know those ones that affect you like a great military speech; filling you with desire to be something and strive for something, to create – in this case. That’s why I usually start with this, it’s also got an awesome build-up after the breakdown to start jumping round the house to (I recommend doing this if you suffer with anxiety, burn off some of the unwanted energy.
- Geek Out For me, this comes in many different forms, from Sherlock to Sin City novels, but, today has been a GoT day – an old teacher of mine sends me links to GoT fan stuff on YouTube from time to time, today that was very much appreciated. We’re talking entire submersion in fantasy, enough to distance myself from reality long enough to stop hyperventilating; once I have submerged myself in this fantasy world, visited a few forums, discussed the over sexualisation/modifications from book to TV (still trying to get my head around the propagation of rape culture with the Cersei/Jaime thing, I’m hoping I will get over it but, to quote Gladiator, not yet…) anyway, I am able to put some distance between me and the part of me that is my eating disorder, I can now enter the kitchen…
- Get Baked
Now this probably isn’t something that I would suggest for everyone; for some of you suffering with an eating disorder or early on in your own recovery, I can imagine this could quite a daunting task but, it has become an integral part of my own recovery – #veganbaking I ❤ it! Though it may not be for everyone, I personally love taking an hour out of my (very) uneventful day to create something that I love and that others can enjoy; I can be creative with flavour combinations and decorations, methodical with processes, and research new recipes online – adding to the time filling YAY! The methodology and repetition of known processes is the relaxing part – whisking, weighing, pouring – whereas the more creative I am, the more I reaffirm my own abilities – I provide can provide a space for myself where not only am I relaxing, I can also create positive consciousness of self; this space, my kitchen, whisk in hand, is my happy place because, I can create happiness. Apparently happiness looks like this:
- Sharing is Caring
By this point, and with 24 cupcakes, I am feeling better – I also have the perfect excuse to drop by at a friend’s house for a cup of tea. Human interaction is one of those things that, when I’m down, I forget I need, I forget how much better it feels not to be in my own head and to have a decent conversation with someone; usually I will not be talking about my issues, there are relatively few people I feel comfortable doing that with (hence the lack of name attached to this blog) and even with them I rarely mention it – I can often feel like a burden, and although this is something that I am trying to correct, it is taking time and building up trust where I previously had none; after a struggling though the day, it’s not what I need – gossip, laughs, crap TV and tea, are what I need. And after this, I can relax.
- Close your Eyes
For anyone who has or, regularly goes through this process, the ups and downs of having an eating disorder, you will know the stress it puts on your body; your physical and mental well-being are constantly under attack, which is why when you’ve finally got to the point where you are relaxed, the best medicine is sleep. As most suffer,s and those who have done any research into eating disorders, will know, an accompaniment for most sufferers is sleep deprivation and/or insomnia. I don’t know the bio-chemistry of it but, I do know that if I don’t have enough sleep, I’m more prone to meltdowns and closer to falling off the wagon. If you’ve had a stressful day, you’ve done everything to calm yourself down and you’re just craving sleep, I suggest doing it right: clean sheets, bath before bed, favourite PJ’s. This my friends is what I will be doing tonight, along with some camomile tea.
It’s been a long two weeks for me, physically and mentally – today I have, for once, taken my own advice and I feel much better for it! I appreciate that these steps aren’t for everyone, recovery is not a “one-size-fits-all” (can we just stop and appreciate the fact that NOTHING is… okay we can get back to it now), I do think it is important for everyone to find what works for them and I’m hoping that my little list can give some inspiration for those in need.