Wednesday, June 29, 2016
But I'm going to surprise you. I had a lovely experience in the psych ER last night.
Yesterday was tough, I ended up hallucinating at work, taking too much ativan and needing to go to the hospital. I had to tell my supervisor that I was hallucinating and needed her to call me an ambulance. It was awful. I try to keep my mental illness and work separate, but unfortunately mental illness doesn't work that way.
Any how, I was brought in to the emergency room, and treated quite nicely. Once I was medically cleared I was brought over to the psych emerg. The nurses were lovely. The psychiatrist was great, he really know how to talk to me, and was able to catch all my bullshit and actually got me to admit to everything that was going on.
I was given the choice to stay the night, which is what I was hoping for, on the condition that I ate dinner. I ate dinner, and didn't purge, and had a safe night. I was treated with kindness and respect, and got what I needed.
Why can't every psych ward be like this? Treat patients as people? And give them what they need?
Tuesday, June 28, 2016
The purple faded pretty quickly, and I'm blonde now. I've never really had light hair but I thought I'd test the theory that blonde girls have more fun.
Monday, June 27, 2016
This is going to be the post that changes your mind about me. This is the post where I come clean about where I'm really at mentally. Where I'm at in the stages of change.
There are five stages of change. They are: pre-contemplation, contemplation, preparation, action and maintenance. If you're interested in this model, I highly suggest asking your doctor or therapist about it, or looking it up if you don't have those resources. It really helped me understand where I was in the recovery process.
I'm fluctuating between stages 1, 2 and 3. To me, those stages look like the following.
Stage 1: Pre-contemplation: Yes I have an eating disorder, but it's not really a problem, I don't need to change.
Stage 2: Contemplation: Yes I have an eating disorder, and it's interfering with my life. I'm going to need to change at one point.
Stage 3: Preparation: I'm going to have to recovery. I will set goals to reduce purging. I will make an effort to eat throughout the day.
But I rarely ever get to stage 4, where I actually follow through on these goals and push myself to change my behaviours. I actually got to the stage a couple weeks ago, but I've returned to stage 3. I'm setting up my year so that I have a chance to recover over the course of the year, but I'm not trying on a day to day basis. I'm setting things up to make it less daunting for me to try in the future.
And that's the problem. The future won't come if I keep on behaving the way I am.
The big problem with my recovery, is that I'm not willing.
I'm not willing to accept that I might need to gain weight.
I'm not willing to accept that gymnastics might be a trigger at times.
I'm not willing to accept that I've struggled with restricting as well as purging.
I'm not willing to accept that I need more than xxxx calories a day.
I'm not willing to accept that I might need more intensive help.
I'm not willing to accept that a low fat diet is disordered.
And these things are all stopping me from really getting to stage four. I'm to willful. I have certain ideas in my mind that I'm not willing to change. And that might mean I won't recover. And to be honest, I'm not sure I want to accept these ideas. I've grown up thinking these things. Challenging these thoughts makes me extremely uncomfortable. And I hate to admit it, but most days, I'd rather be sick than challenge these ideas.
Saturday, June 25, 2016
I went shopping for some new clothes and didn't cry once. I didn't cry when the sizes werent consistent. I didn't cry when the clothes didnt fit right. And I didn't cry when I couldn't afford the cardigan I wanted.
It's hard to go clothes shopping when you have an ed. I haven't bought clothes in store in over a year. I've shopped online a few times, but the last time I shopped in a store was over a year ago when I needed new bras.
I picked up two skirts and two cardigans. I now have a cardigan for every work day!
I'm off to a concert tonight, so I'll post pictures of myself all dolled up as well as my new clothes tomorrow!
Hope you're all having a lovely weekend.
Thursday, June 23, 2016
I ate three cupcakes. Not as a binge, I had one at 10, one at noon and one at 2. It's 2:15. I want to purge I want to purge I want to purge.
Update: It's 2:30. I purged.
Obviously only the last cupcake came out.
I hate myself. Now I just want to b/p my night away. I'm thinking Ben and Jerrys and pastries with peanut butter.
I know I should just try again, but I feel like I've ruined the day. And once I ruined the day, there's no point in trying anymore. I'll try again tomorrow.
Wednesday, June 22, 2016
On Monday, I had the realization that every time I choose my eating disorder, I'm actively reducing my chances of getting into Berkeley for graduate school, which is the ultimate goal.
I used to believe that I could have an eating disorder and go to Berkeley. That I could have an eating disorder and be extremely successful in my academics. Although I have no proof against this idea, I do have experimental evidence that tells me that this isn't possible.
There's a skill in DBT, called radical acceptance. The idea behind radical acceptance, is to accept that some thing are beyond your control. The example my therapist gives is the following:
Say you're standing between a steep cliff and a large body of water. A big wave is heading towards you. You can try to climb the cliff, but you don't have time to get out of the way. You have two options.
You can: a) try to climb the cliff to not get wet, but the wave will still hit you, and you'll be tired and wet.
Or, you can b) radically accept that you're going to get wet, and work within the situation.
To be honest, I find this idea somewhat ridiculous. I was always taught that you should try, no matter how impossible the situation seems. In my mind, radical acceptance sounds like failure.
However, when it comes to my eating disorder, maybe what I need is to radically accept that I can not go to Berkeley and have an eating disorder. Some may be able to do it, but I cannot. Instead of being bitter and trying to make this possible, I can accept that I need to choose. My mom used to say: "You can have anything but not everything". This rings true in this situation. I can have an eating disorder, or I can have Berkeley. But I can't have both. And I want Berkeley more.
So I've set up some 'recovery rules' for myself. I'm eating at least 1200kcal/day. I'm exercising to improve my gymnastics, not my body. And I'm no longer purging. The no longer purging will be the hardest, but I'm going to try as much as I can. I need to get this under control.
Today is day 2 of these new rules. I had a slice of pizza for lunch, and came very close to purging, but kept it in. I had a massive bowl of oats for breakfast, as I find it easier to get my calories in earlier in the day. I have a protein shake for the train ride home, and then I'll have breakfast for dinner (vegan sausages and egg whites).
I'm still struggling a lot with my thoughts. I have motivation right now partly because I'm broke and can't afford binge food. I'll have to work hard when I get paid to keep my motivation going.
I can do this. I will do this. I must do this.
I have new plans for the fall.
I will be enrolling in school, however I'll only be taking two classes. Two classes is considered full time for students with disabilities, and so I will be considered a full time student.
This means that I get access to free counseling, and can keep the same doctor akd psychiatrist that ive had for the past couple years.
I know I've talked a lot about not being ready for school, so it may seek strange that I've decided to enroll. However, I'm doing this in a smart way. I'll only be taking two courses in the fall, and they're both first year courses (this will be my forth year) so I expect to br quite successful. I'll be taking macro economics and micro economics. I'll have two hours of class Wednesday mornings, and one hour of class Thursday mornings. The rest of the course is done online.
I also got hired at the school bar/restaurant to work in the kitchen. It's a part time position and they work around my class times.
I'll also be starting a "beyond self harm" group which follows a DBT program. I've done a condensed DBT program once, so I know what to expect and I hope that this helps with all aspects of my impulsivity, not just my self harm.
So my finances, school and treatment seem to be sorted out. I'm pretty confident in this plan going forward. I'm back at work today after two sick days so I'm pretty anxious about that, but I know it will be okay.
Hope you're all having a good hump day
Monday, June 20, 2016
I know I posted a while ago that I was going to take a year off school.
Im starting to think that's a mistake.
However , I do think that taking it easy for a bit would be a good idea.
I'm thinking of taking to first year courses during my first term (as supposed to fourth year courses), seeing how that goes, and deciding my second term from there.
Being a student has a lot of perks, including having my therapy costs covered and being able to be treated by the same doctor and psychiatrist.
Taking two first year courses would allow me to work part time while studying and make money as well.
I'm still thinking. But I think being a student is a good idea.
Friday, June 17, 2016
Do you ever feel like everyone is moving forward with their lives and your just, well, stuck.
Everyone around me seems to be advancing their careers with research grants, or summer school, or internships and I'm just here at my summer job, that doesn't give me anything but a paycheck.
My research supervisor from last summer asked me what I was doing, and I had to reluctantly admit to doing office work and that I was going on medical leave.
I don't want my eating disorder to dictate my life this way. I don't want to be in and out of hospitals and treatment until this kills me. But I don't want to let go of it.
I can only imagine how well I would be doing right now if it wasn't for my illnesses. I could be doing my second research term, while preparing grad school essays. That's what I should be doing. I should be graduating in 2017. Instead, between my reduced course load and my medical leave, I won't be graduating until 2018 or 2019.
There's a saying that goes something like:
"You can be on the right track but you'll get run over if you just stand there."
That's how I feel. Like things started off so well. I had so many opportunities given to me, so many options at my finger tips. I was the girl who was going to make it. I was the girl who was going to And I chose to be sick. I know it's an illness and not a choice, but I'm choosing to not recover. I'm choosing to listen to my illness. I'm choosing to allow it to get stronger.
Being sick won't get me anywhere close to my real goals. So why am I so attached to it? Why can't I let it go?
I shared my last poem on facebook, as I'm trying to be more open and share my experiences with the world. Blogging is great, but I want to make a difference, and I think one of the best ways for me to do that is explore different forms of media when writing about mental health, as it allows me to target a different audience.
The response I received was all very positive, and in fact a handful of my friends shared my poem which I was very thankful for. My struggle is the way my parents reacted. Yes, I have my parents on facebook. And it can be hard for me to share things, because I don't want it to seem like I'm attacking them.
I'm worried that two of the lines in my poem may have seemed harsh towards them.
"For the girl who's family didn't understand
Because from the outside everything was grand"
My dad sent me a message saying he wishes he was paying more attention ten years ago. My mom commented that she loves me.
When I write poetry, I come from a very emotional place. Yes, my parents made mistakes. Yes, some of those mistakes affected me long term. I often wish I could go back in time and shake sense into my parents during those important moments, when their words and actions affected me more than they thought. But I can't. I'm grateful for the support I've gotten from my parents. They aren't always who I need them to be, but they're still there, and they're still supporting me.
I'm worried that when I share my writing, my family overgeneralizes the message I'm trying to get across. On the other hand, I also know that in order to make change, you need to talk about things that are uncomfortable. Shielding everyone's feelings won't lead to any change. I think I did the right thing. I just don't want to hurt others.
Thursday, June 16, 2016
For the girl who gets straight As and in public never cries
For the girl who knows that smoking kills and love isn't forever
And to always look presentable because you'll be judged by your cover
For the girl who's loved ones just needed some space
For the girl who was lonely so became her own best friend
But turned out to be an enemy and then wanted the end
For the girl who spent all her time thinking of things that kill
For the girl who's family didn't understand
Because from the outside everything was grand
For the girl who when night comes, loses all her determination
For the girl who fights all day and cries all night
As it's the only time she's out of sight
For the girl who has a message she wants you to hear
For the girl who wants to be a survivor
And not someone other's will cry over
For the girl who's heart hasn't stopped beating
For the girl who knows she's sick not broken
And won't stop fighting until her words have been spoken
Wednesday, June 15, 2016
Honestly, I haven't had a real binge/purge session like this in a while. One where I lose all control after restricting all day, where I eat whatever was in the cupboards, and purge until I'm empty.
I'm shaking. I'm having troubles getting my fingers to land on the right keys as I type this. My heart is pounding in my chest. I know I should go eat a banana, but that seems like too much. I would drink some water and go to sleep but I have hair dye in my hair (I'll post pictures later).
I say I want to recovery, but in reality I live for this shaky feeling. This feeling where I think I can do anything. The world is mine for the taking. It doesn't last very long, and will kill me one day, but while it's here it's wonderful.
I'm finally in a good mood but it's for all the wrong reasons.
You see, I'm in a good mood because I skipped lunch today and I'm on that fasting high.
My coworker asked me why I wasn't eating lunch. I lied and said I wasnt hungry.
Now I'm thinking of how much easier my life would be if I skipped lunch every day. I could live off of breakfast, dinner and a protein shake to sustain me during the day.
I know I shouldn't be considering this. That this is moving in the wrong direction.
But when I restrict I don't binge amd purge and when I don't binge and purge I feel in control.
And that's all I want. To feel in control.
Monday, June 13, 2016
June 12th 2014
I don't remember much of this day.
I remember my parents leaving for work.
I remember having had terrible nightmares and feeling quite low and impulsive.
I remember going out on my ebike to buy razors and a big bottle of pills.
I remember worrying about how much money I was spending even though I was planning on being dead.
I remember going back home and cutting.
I remember taking every last pill in that bottle.
I remember lying on my bed hoping to fall asleep forever.
I remember my therapist calling for our phone session.
I remember my step dad calling as my therapist was concerned that I didn't pick up.
I remember ignoring the phone ten or twenty times.
I remember finally picking up and saying what happened.
I remember my step dad rushing home crying and screaming.
I remember an ambulance being called.
I remember being in the ER hallway so I could be watched.
I remember being brought over to the psych ER.
I remember little bits and pieces of my evaluation.
But I don't remember most if that afternoon.
I remember waking up and being told my new diagnosis.
I remember laughing because turns out I had the same illness as my ex's mom.
I remember apologizing over and over to my parents who were trying to understand, and my siblings who didn't even know what was going on.
June 12th 2015
I didn't wake up in the best mood.
I had actually just slept for 32 hours straight.
Depression and malnutrition can do that to you.
I got on the scale and was actually semi okay with what I saw, I guess my bloat had reduced in my sleep.
I had a damn paper to write so I opened my laptop.
And procrastinated a little by watching Gilmore girls.
I then went to celebrate.
My past year.
With a waffle brunch with one of my best friends.
My plan was to purge.
But I decided I deserved it.
Even though that one meal was more than I like to eat in a day.
I went and wrote my paper.
And colored some sea turtles.
Then went out for my friend's birthday.
I had a really cute dress I had recently bought.
And it made my diminishing boobs look great.
My fake ID worked, but I new better than to drink.
I was feeling quite melancholy.
And didn't need the depressant of alcohol.
I came home and binged and purged.
Almost as a reward.
For getting through this year.
It's been hell, but I'm doing better.
I still think of ending it all.
But at least I have good days to look forward to now.
June 12th 2016
I had a lot of plans for this day
That involved celebrating how far I've come
And getting my recovery tattoo.
Unfortunately I spent my day in bed
With an awful cold
And none of these plans panned out. I spent my day laying in bed
Finishing the fourth season of house of lies
And eating a box of smores Oreos.
I really wanted to purge
But figured my body could use the energy
To fight this virus.
A year ago having my plans ruined like this
Would have ruined my week.
But I'm getting better,
And learning how to accept
That life doesn't always go your way.
I'll get my recovery tattoo later this summer,
Maybe around my birthday
Or maybe later this week,
If I get too impatient.
But the lesson here is
That life can suck and get in the way
But I can still be okay.
Friday, June 10, 2016
I'm officially underweight. My BMI this morning was 18.5. I've never been underweight before. It feels strange.
Not that the .4 pounds I lost makes me look any different. It was the number that made me feel strange. I know it's irrational, but I'm now scared that everyone knows I'm sick. I'm worried that people will comment on my body.
Since getting officially diagnosed with an eating disorder 3 years ago, (after struggling for 3.5 years), I wanted to be underweight so that I would be taken seriously. The world shouldn't work that way, but unfortunately it does. If you're underweight, people care more. I thought that being underweight would somehow validate my illness.
It didn't. To be honest, I feel like more of a fraud then I did before. I've been doing well lately, eating around 1500/day and reduced my binging and purging by a lot. I eat three meals a day. I'm not restricting.... or am I? Because my binging and purging has reduced so much I feel like I'm a fake bulimic. My therapist has mentioned that I could have been miss-diagnosed and should be diagnosed with anorexia binge/purge subtype, and I always thought this was ridiculous. But I do spend a fair portion of the day hungry.
You wouldn't think that changing weight classes would cause me to question everything. I truly honestly believe that eating disorders have nothing to do with weight. But somehow, when it comes to me, that rule changes.
I have a lot of thought records to do over the next few days. Hopefully the thoughts will settle down.
Thursday, June 9, 2016
Yesterday my therapist was telling me that I need to use radical acceptance, and accept that I can not recover and continue weighing myself.
She made the comparison of an alcoholic having just one drink.
"It's a lovely idea but it's bullshit" were her exact words.
What do you guys think? I'm all for accepting that my set point weight is higher than what I'm currently at. I'll accept that I need to gain weight to recover. I'll even accept that it's not healthy for me to maintain a lower body weight even if my eating patterns are healthy.
I just don't understand why I have to get rid of the scale.
I didn't weigh myself this morning and really struggled all day. Knowing the number just calms me down. I'm usually able to convince myself to eat according to my meal plan for the day no matter what the scale says, I just need to know. I need the reassurance that I'm not gaining a bunch of weight. I need the reassurance that I'm not expanding at an exponential rate. I jist need the confirmation of the number on a scale.
Wednesday, June 8, 2016
Sunday will be June 12th, the date of my last suicide attempt two years ago.
I'm planning to spend the day on my own, doing things for me and not for others. This is a day to celebrate all the work I've done over the past two years. A day to recognize myself for always being there even when others weren't.
This week has been okay, binging and purging has gone way down and I don't think I'm restricting very much, but I know my mind can skew these things. I'm eating about 1500/day though.
What's really pushing me through this week is knowing that I get paid on Friday, and that Sunday is my day.
Here's my plan for the day so far
8am: wake up, stretch, drink coffee, watch a couple episodes of house of lies.
9am: take the bus downtown
9:30am: breakfast at Starbucks
10am: go get my recovery tattoo!!!!!
Noon: head over to the mall to pick up knitting supplies and some bath products, and grab lunch
2pm: take my new knitting project with me to see Alice through the looking glass.
5pm: head home for dinner and rest after my long day
I was dumb and forgot to book my tattoo appointment but I was told there should be room for me as a walk on Sunday morning. If not I'll book with them to get it done the following week, and just enjoy my morning out by the waterfront.
Its Wednesday, aka hump day, and the last thing I want to do is go to work. But after work I get to go see my therapist and then spend the evening with my boyfriend, so I'm looking forward to getting through today.
Monday, June 6, 2016
You know you're sick when instead of wishing for health, you start wishing for different types of illness.
The one with anorexia wishes they had bulimia so at least they could taste food again.
The one with bulimia wishes they had binge eating disorder so they didn't have to purge.
The one with borderline personality disorder wishes they had bipolar because it's better understood.
The one with bipolar wishes they had depression because the manic episodes scare them.
The one with depression wishes they had heart disease, because then at least it would be a physical illness.
The one with heart disease wishes they had breast cancer, they can live without a breast but not without a heart.
It's easy to romanticize different types of hell, and the grass always seems greener on the other side. But remember that no matter the type, hell still burns.
Sunday, June 5, 2016
I've decided to move forward with this plan, and as of now, will not be enrolling in courses in the fall.
The reason behind this decision is two-fold. The first reason being that I think I'm currently too sick to properly attend school. The second reason is that my eventual goal is a Ph.D. and a tenured track position. Continuing school now, would most likely result in me not being accepted to the grad school of my dreams.
It's hard for me to admit that I'm too sick to attend school. But evidence has piled up over the past three years and I've reached a point where my grades and health have dropped so much that I can no longer deny it. Not only have my grades dropped, they dropped while on a reduced course load, I didn't get summer research positions, I had to retro-actively drop out of courses, as well as differ an exam due to having a psychotic episode the day of the exam. I can no longer pretend that I'm handling school well. I'm not. My BPD has been acting like crazy and I started having hallucinations this past year. I need to get this under control ASAP.
Not only do I need to get my health under control, I need to get my grades under control. I go to school to learn. I spend a lot of money on school so that I can learn. I'm currently not learning very much in my classes, as I spend most of the time dissociated, and this in turn shows on my transcript. My goal is Berkeley. I want to get my Ph.D. from Berkeley. One of the top schools in the states is not going to accept me into their program with my current grades and lack of mathematical understanding. That's not me being hard on myself, that's reality.
There's a quote I really like:
Discipline is choosing what you want most over what you want now.What I want now is to be a student. But what I want most is a career in mathematics. To successfully have a career in mathematics, I realized I need to take a year off and heal. Then attack school once again.
So I'm currently looking for jobs for the year, and also looking into doing some mental health awareness speeches for high school students. I'd really like to take this year to work on myself, but I think that one of the best ways I have of doing that, is by being vocal about my problems. Working on ending the stigma, writing this blog, and running my twitter account all help me feel more accomplished. And that is something I want to keep up.
I'd love to hear about your experiences with school and mental illness, please share in the comments!
To be perfectly honest, the entire fitness world seems like a big eating disorder to me that's been so normalized that it's no longer considered disordered. If I called my restricting 'cutting', or my binging 'bulking' would I have less of an eating disorder? If I counted macros instead of calories, would I have less of a disorder? '
A lot of it seems like a competition, to see who can be the most disordered. Who's to say that these athletes are healthy? Why is the eating disorder community so hated on, while the fitness community is loved? It seems like variations of the same disorder to me.
Friday, June 3, 2016
I feel tired. But it's more than just tired. It's the tired sleep won't fix. Or maybe it would if I slept for a few years. I ended up binging and purging yesterday, and the temptation to do so again today is strong.
I just want chocolate and sleep.
Netflix and my bed.
A handful of sleeping pills.
No, Niqi. One sleeping pill. I have to stop sleeping through my weekends in a drugged state. I need to get my overdosing under control. I wish I could say I'd care if it killed me, but truth is right now, I wouldn't. My suicidal thoughts have returned unfortunately.
Tomorrow is the pro-show in my city. I'm hoping that it helps motivate me to get back into the gym. I'm worried about ED triggers, but I think the positives it will bring to me in terms of fighting my depression, will outweigh the ED triggers. Or maybe my ED is just lying to me. Who knows. At teh very least, having a reason to wake up tomorrow is enough for me to not overdose on sleeping pills.
I'm sorry I've been so dark lately, and haven't written much poetry. I haven't been in the best headspace. At least my eating disorder is somewhat under control - I did go 5 days! And that's a huge win.
That's all I'll say for now,
I hope you guys are all fighting hard.
Thursday, June 2, 2016
Today is eating disorder action day.
I got asked the other day why breaking the stigma surrounding mental health was so important to me, so here's my answer.
Had I been more educated (and properly educated) about mental health and didn't fear the stigma, I would have reached out for help a lot sooner, and potentially have been able to treat my illness sooner. It kills me to think that others are in similar situations.
Truth #1: Many people with eating disorders look healthy, yet may be extremely ill.Truth #2: Families are not to blame, and can be the patients’ and providers’ best allies in treatment.Truth #3: An eating disorder diagnosis is a health crisis that disrupts personal and family functioning.Truth #4: Eating disorders are not choices, but serious biologically influenced illnesses.Truth #5: Eating disorders affect people of all genders, ages, races, ethnicities, body shapes and weights, sexual orientations, and socioeconomic statuses.Truth #6: Eating disorders carry an increased risk for both suicide and medical complications.Truth #7: Genes and environment play important roles in the development of eating disorders.Truth #8: Genes alone do not predict who will develop eating disorders.Truth #9: Full recovery from an eating disorder is possible. Early detection and intervention are important.
Wednesday, June 1, 2016
Made it to day five again. Now I just have to make it through today.
I don't feel as though this really counts as being purge-free for five days because I binged yesterday. But I stopped myself halfway through and DIDN'T purge. It ended up being about 1500kcal at the end of the day, but I need to remind myself that 1500kcal won't make me gain. 15000 yes, 1500 no. I've made a lot of progress when it comes to my binging - I've gone from 10,000kcal binges to an average of 3000kcal.
It makes it easier not to purge when the binges are smaller as well. Like yesterday, after half my binge, I was able to convince myself not to purge, since it was a smaller amount.
Anyways, I know this still counts. I'm getting better. Slowly, but it's happening.
I haven't gone five days in over two years. In fact, the last time I went five days was when I was inpatient for my depression the first time. I hadn't figured out how to purge behind their backs yet, so complied and managed to stay clean.
And now I'm doing it again. On my own this time. After a HELL week, as many of you know if you've been reading my last few posts.
Seven more hours to go.
I'll update you on whether or not I was successful tomorrow.