1 Year In!

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That came around quickly! It doesn’t actually feel like twelve months. A lot has changed in that time.

My goal was to try and overcome my eating disorder and end 2014 in a happier, healthier state of mind. While I wouldn’t say that I have recovered from my eating disorder, (even the way I view that sentence has changed from a fix to one of maintenance). I can wholeheartedly say that mentally I am in much better shape. That has a knock on effect…a healthier head makes a healthier body I think.

I see myself in a much more positive way now, able to aknowledge achievements and goals attained. A big change I have made is to care far less what others think of me. I still get anxious but it doesn’t completely rule my life now. If I want to wear something I will or choose a certain look I will. That is an element of me of old and its good to have it back!

Throughout the year my perceptions of myself and my eating disorder have changed. I expect that will be ongoing as I go along. You see, I set out to do 12 months and what I learnt along the way is this will be a lifelong journey. I need to look after myself, put my needs higher than the bottom of the pile and accept who I am. Failure to tend to these will lead to me seeking comfort in something, be it binges, the high of extreme restrictions or any number of coping mechanisms.

I took great pleasure in throwing away the weight loss club leaflets that came through the door this week. That’s not saying I don’t want to be slimmer, I still need to lose a lot weight for health reasons but I can now see that a slow and gradual loss is far better than full on diet mode. By following my journey I am marginally smaller than when I started but what has come off has stayed off. It’s good but not really on my list of good things to happen this year. To go from being obsessed most of my life to writing that sentence, shows how far I have come.

This year I intend to set new goals to work towards in 2015. These will be set around the one and only rule I have for myself…TO BE HAPPY! This applies to every area of my life. I still suffer from depression and the now diagnosed Generalised Anxiety Disorder and of course my ED. I learnt to accept them and in doing so it helps finding balance in my life, as much as I can. I don’t always get it right, afterall this is only the start but I accept it will be up and down like anyones life. The key to getting past the fear these brought into my life was to be matter of fact. I could panic that all is lost and I absolutely feel that on my bad days! The difference now is I let it ride, I have these conditions as simple as that! If I need a day or week doing as little as possible, its ok to do so. By giving myself permission to be vulnerable I pull out much quicker than before. I can even say to people I have an eating disorder now. Not rooftop shouting but when the subject arises I put it out there. It’s not easy but not as hard as I felt it would be.

The huge difference I made in this umpteenth attempt at recovery in a new year, was to share everything with you all. All others have been fone in secret and alone. They ultimately failed. In making this change, I found support and unexpected friendship, for which I am so grateful. I feel like I belong somewhere now. I would never had made it this far without you all, so thank you to everyone who has helped me along, be it with messages, emails or an unexpected kind word, you have made me laugh, cry and get up on days I didn’t feel I could.

I have a long way to go but I will end my round up of year one on a list of my favourite things from the year…

  1. Making new friends who understand my struggles & being able to help them too.
  2. Stopping binges!
  3. Learning to understand my emotions better.
  4. Finding the courage to start my own business even though it scares me every day.
  5. Accepting I deserve to be happy.
  6. Taking steps to get help.
  7. Finding out I have synthesis and using this in my recovery.
  8. Ditching dieting!
  9. Letting myself look to an open future again.
  10. I actually wrote a blog for a whole year. Not bad for a spur of the moment idea on 5th January 2014!

Time for year 2 to begin. I look forward to sharing more ups and downs with you all but most of all being able to get to know myself more, spreading my wings and flying as far as I can.

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