Recovery Update – Part 2

Oh hey, its been a while, let’s jump straight in. For some reason I don’t feel the need for my usual introduction. What can I say? I’m tedious AF and well aware of my propensity to talk too much.

Upon returning to Queensland in April, I remember thinking, ‘screw it, I’m doing this’. I began obsessively listening to Tabitha Farrar’s podcasts and continued to study the effects of malnutrition. Having come to the conclusion that I first needed to undo years of under-eating, I slowly worked myself up to eating roughly 4000 calories a day. My proudest moment was when I began using the Lifesum app to eat as much as humanly possible and my step counter to record my LACK of activity. So rebellious. It was Autumn by this point and thank god it was cool when the night sweats began. Oh lord, they sucked, as did the inevitable weight gain and constant exhaustion. Before my trip to WA I had given up my vegetarian identity and was regularly consuming meat. The cravings were very apparent, to the point where I was consuming several large steaks each week for several months. Mike helped me set up this blog in August, just before my 32nd Birthday. It was a great medium through which I could articulate my struggles, particularly when I couldn’t even bring myself to leave the house on my actual Birthday. I vowed that it would be the last year my eating disorder would dictate whether I was ‘acceptable enough’, and thereby granted permission to celebrate my old-lady status.

By September, I had overshot my set point and began wearing what my illness mockingly referred to as my ‘fat clothes’. These were items that had been roughly 1-2 sizes bigger than my disordered size and I had kept them with the intent of having them taken in. Some of those items grew a little tight, so I purchased some comfier pants and made the commitment to clear out my closet when my weight had stabilised. Luckily, most of my tops still fit, as I’ve always been around the same size above the hips. My appetite began to normalise around then and the intense cravings for certain foods were diminishing. I could actually keep fear foods in the house for longer than a week without the urge to demolish all of it in one sitting. By January, the focus had shifted to other aspects of my life. Namely, to that wretched biological clock. Children had been on the agenda for years and I was freaking out a bit over whether I’d manage before turning 35. This may sound brutal, but it was nice to stress out over something other than calories and how fat I thought I was. Another benefit of my recovery was that I had started using my brain in a more constructive manner and I decided to further my education by enrolling in University.

One of the best moments, and I really don’t care how shallow this seems because my love for clothing is eternal, occurred recently. I finally gathered the nerve to rifle through my closet in late March. To my surprise, many of my clothes still fit. The tiniest pieces were photographed, bagged and sold before the temptation to try them on arose. It was a small victory for me in that I wouldn’t have to procure a a new collection and I was able to sell several items in order to replace others. I had returned to my natural set point without even realising it.  

The four people who actually read my blog are perhaps wondering how I’m dealing with the COVID19 situation. I know one of my stalkers thought a 3:30am phone call the other morning would really endear me to him. I love meth heads with delusions of grandeur. So fun. Anyway, I’ve had some hiccups, mostly in the form of making and eating copious amounts of peanut cookies to the point of nausea, but I haven’t faltered in my recovery. The cookie eating was merely part of a physiological reaction to the stress brought on by the pandemic and the sudden dwindling of resources. I don’t know why I picture the panic-buyers wallpapering their living room with ass paper and drinking hand sanitiser in order to induce that buzz. Anyway, my evolved brain adapted to the increase in my hunger by simply urging me to eat more, so I did. Self-isolation has been tricky for Mike and I think we both miss having alone time, but I do love any excuse to avoid people. My tolerance has improved slightly, but I find the human race to be particularly frustrating. I had a bartending gig lined up prior to this crisis and still have that job to look forward to when this is over. We take daily walks, something I was loath to do until recently, and I spend my time productively. Shockingly, I find myself brainstorming ideas for the blog, managing a recovery Instagram, Facebook page and an affiliated support group. All of which are self-initiated projects I have managed to be consistent with. At the end of the month, I’ll start receiving additional income in the form of welfare payments, so there will be no stressing out over money. Lastly, if you’ve made it this far, I’ve included two pictures below. We all love a good picture reference.

The first is of me in October of 2018, two months before my tentative foray into recovery. The second is a year later on a night out with friends. It took me 10 minutes to pick an outfit, instead of the usual hour. Although I wasn’t yet comfortable in my body, I had started to feel like myself again. With better hair.

Until next time, enjoy not having to deal with idiots on a daily basis.

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