I want to be perfect
This desire only does me harm
Since I started therapy in 2013
I have learnt to let go
It is freeing
It is healing
This week-end was not easy. Saturday I had my dog’s training, I usually look forward to it. It takes place in a forest like park with loads of dogs around and they are just hilarious to be around. But this saturday even if I was not having it, I somehow managed to pull myself out of bed and join the training group. My only motivation was the memories of my past fun experiences with my furry besties and the fresh air, the fresh air had to do some good.
Then I went home. I had a skype meeting all day for an association I am part of. We had an election. I knew that I was proposed to be one of the three VP but the truth is I really don’t want that position. I have so much on my plate already and my own projects that this year I wanted to prioritise myself. I was not assertive enough in my arguments and ended up one of the VPs for three years. God help me ! I hope this will be a learning experience for sure.
Numb? I cannot feel anything at the moment. Food is calling me. I win the fights. Sometimes I am so numb and tired that all I want to do is to sleep. I wake up the next day without feeling refreshed or rested. The numbness continues.
I know there is a feeling wanting to resurface but I am not letting it.
Then it did. Sadness. I feel sad. Why? I don’t feel like I want to create. I want to be held, hugged, loved. I need to love myself. But right now I am too tired.
Yesterday and today have been horrible. I try not to complain too much but the lack of interesting happenings in my life during those two days are taking a toll on my mood. Part of the reasons that are making me feel this way is the fact that I am still unemployed. Since I graduated I tried internships, opening a business, applying for jobs, networking. None of which worked. I tried it both in law for which I have a degree in and in fashion for which I am passionate. So these past two days I have trying to cheer myself up. But nothing ! I ended up trying to find something to do in between meals. Watching movies and spending the days in bed. I also painted but my whole heart was not into it.
I started applying for jobs again. Online and using some networking. I have no idea how long that will take. Regardless I am most worried about how long I will be in this state. I feel as if I am letting my life slip away while I fixate on my failures.
I was never the going-out, surrounded by friends type of person. Though I tricked myself into thinking that I was because it was what others did. First year of university was when I really went out there. Made friends. Unfortunately they were erasmus students, so they left the next year. Loneliness does not agree well with me. I have had trouble making friends ever since. Well, that part of my past ties in with my move to any country really. I am terrible at keeping on touch, as I categorise those I meet with different chapters of my life. Chapters in which I never seemed to be the same person. Where I would mould myself to the new environment and fail to really be in touch with who I really am.
So here I am back in London with one friend V. She has been spending time with me, but she works, so she has limited time to. Since I am unemployed I have very little social interactions. I feel alone. There is another reason for my sadness. I can’t seem to pick myself up. I want to apply for jobs. I wish I could stay here in London forever but because of my visa I can’t. The prospect of going home is painful. I don’t fit-in there. I don’t feel comfortable. I feel caged. There is yet another reason.
Right now I wish I had the courage to put on the baggiest clothes and buy some art materials. Come back and sink into my sketch book. If only I could generate money by doing that and only that. I wouldn’t even care if law was on the side. If only. In the mean time I turn to food for comfort and escape. It really doesn’t do the trick. I refuse to eat all day so when I don’t eat. I am still lost, the reasons are still there so present. I have conversations in my head to quiet the negative thoughts when I get tired. I simply fall asleep. Another day goes by.
I could write forever. I have no conclusions. Just that I am still frowning inside and out.
I try to be aware and stay aware of my emotions. Differentiate between the real and unreal fears. While this is going on, I have to keep living. To continue on my journey. Not that of others.
Today I woke up thinking about food again. A common phenomenon when I wake up alone. Often it is because my first reaction is to escape the self-doubt, self-hatred and fear of uncertainty during these days of freedom. I never considered using a sabbatical year to start getting in touch with who I am. Away from family, Malagasy society, competitive pressure of law and move towards my creativity.
I have so much freedom now and I am always alone. Alone and aware. I have learned however that being alone and feeling alone are different. Feeling alone is harder to face. But I must because ignoring it only builds up pain that will eventually emerge. Often it manifest itself in my extreme use of food.
As often as I can, I chose to live in my reality. Instead of focusing on food and live in the clouds. When my mind drifts towards those urges I pick up a paint brush, look at photos online or simply watch a tv show. Carefully assesing whether I am numbing or distracting myself from what Is really going on. If I catch myself doing so. I would rather stop and stare. Cry, laugh, yell in my pillow. Feel.
The urges? They somehow fade away.
I recently started painting again. When I do, time stops. I never painted or drew much because I would always be to quick to judge what it looks like. I have pushed that prejudicial attitude aside and allowed self-expression. In the moment I am at peace. Food is no longer my master. I am no longer its slave.
I still ate two pain aux chocolat and a flapjack at breakfast. Then I felt guilty. Lunch was better. Now I am lying in bed. Waiting for my design class tonight.
Could this behaviour be binging?
Today started off weirdly well.
I was woken up by a facebook message from the “artist”. A guy I have been on and off with. I welcomed his virtual hellos without reading too much into it. I thought of food. Then pushed the ideas of indulgent sinful breakfast away. I had soya milk and coffee instead, carelessly. Without planning or obsessing. I then cleaned my appartment. Picking up traces of my last overeating experiences. Honestly I still fit in the muffin, flapjacks and popcorns throughout the day. I have them in the comfort of my bed watching a serie. Why? Out of boredom, to kill time.
Then the guilty feelings settle in. Guilt for not applying to a job, for taking another easy day. Truth is. I feel terrible for being unemployed. I had imagined a completly different life at this age. At least I have been brave enough to pursue another obsession. Arts, fashion. So today instead of eating too much. I worked on some photos for my fashion page. Applied to a work placement with a designer. I doubt I’ll ever be considered but you don’t fail unless you try right?
Then I was debating going out and getting some beauty products. The streets are a little bit of a challenge these days. Although I love the sense of invisibility in London. I hate my appearance. I have not been this big ever. I have not weighed myself but my dress size is off the chart. So going out there feeling like the ugliest ducklin isn’t pleasant. I did anyways and I needed lunch as well. I did not overeat. But I still managed to eat a flapjack. I ate at my dinning table. I worked on some pictures a little longer.
Sobriety was taking a toll on my energy level. I wanted to watch a movie in bed. I realised that I usually do this to distract myself from focusing on the fact that I can’t find a job either in law or arts, that I am still torn between the two and feel as if there has to be an answer somewhere. When I do that I forget to enjoy the experience of figuring it all out. Then my mind drifted to food. How proud I felt for not giving into temptation with the exception of the 350 cal flapjack. Yet there I was, struggling to determine more reasons for needing my drug. Loneliness, boredom, fear of failure.
V one of my friends from university, a close one, as close as my definition of a friendship is, is coming over. I want to plan a shoot in the streets of London. I was nervous about her visit. Her judgments really. She has seen me supposedly obsessed about my body image, loosing the weight and now back in my XL clothes. I was embarrased of what she might think. If a few months ago this would have driven me to planning food. These days, I try to let the fear be, making sure it does not consume me. She came we talked, laughed. My project is a test shoot with a model whom I would style. I have never done this here in London. I am starting to get used to it in Madagascar though. The logistics are much easier there. But I won’t find out unless I try it here.
The evening was obviously terrifying. Night time is when my evils come out and attack me. I had a croissant with ham and cheese and a magnum ice cream. I avoid keeping food in my apartment that I can easily reach for. Again to stay away from temptation. I hope it won’t be like this forever. Right now I am too fragile to do otherwise.
I bought a box of alpen muesli and skimmed milk for breakfast. I ended up mixing the muesli to a batter I prepared for a binge on pancake early in the afternoon. I did not give into that binge. Well I mixed it and fried it. Tasted it and it was disgusting. If this was months ago I would have proceeded to having it anyway. But I couldn’t. I am better than that. So I stopped. I still poured a bowl of muesli and milk and ate it in bed. That in my opinion was comfort eating.
In sum my day was venture to stay away from my fixes. I was trying to figure out the reasons and deal with them. While I was in bed trying to alleviate the pain and distract myself with a tv show. I ended up crying a little. Feeling weak and vulnerable. Saddened that it takes this much effort to stay away from food.
I don’t have much of a conclusion other than that it was a struggle. I made it without waking up the next morning with 1ton of guilt instead of 1000 tons.
Life is a struggle at times and I have to face it.
Fears, feelings, food are part of that battle but I can win it.
It is wednesday and I am trying again
Not to binge, to feel, to fight
Since my loss of control I have made every effort for it to count for something. I let myself feel. I try every day to lessen the disconnection between my mind and my body. When I feel whole, I am content. At peace inside. Though I look fat and weigh too much for my frame. I do not feel fat. I just accept what has become of me. Telling myself it is only temporary and the priority now is to have a healthier mind.
Working towards a healthier mind. Feeling, sitting with my emotions and letting thoughts and fears be just that is exhausting. It consumes my energy sometimes but it seems to be necessary. When I do I need not to run to comfort and escape. I don’t need to be numbed.
I wish I had the ability and sense to face reality: pain, joy, sadness, stress in a stable way. I wish I never pushed them and locked them in a box inside me. At least I have learned the lesson now. It seems endless at the moment. I fear I will never get out of it. I will be obese again. I will keep drowning.
Battling not to escape or be dictated by new and unresolved emotions everyday has been tumultuous and unsettling. I am constantly training my mind not to give into my addiction and when it drifts towards food, I have to pull it back to the present. When I don’t. I binge.
I am sure many of you have experienced this before. I admire you for powering through it because today I wish I could seal the can of worms tight. So tight it will never pop open again. But I know the mature and healthier way is to deal with it. So today I choose to deal even with the sliver of energy I have left.
Yesterday started off well.
Gym, no calorie counting, three meals and two snacks.
No fear of food or uncontrollable cravings.
When obsessive thoughts tried to settle in my mind I chased them away by sitting there and assessing what I was feeling in the moment.
Little conversations in my head to avoid clouding my judgment and running to food for its numbing effect. I told myself that I need not to be fearful or anxious about every little thing life throws at me. Why was I so scared of myself and my life. Enough already.
Shopped then went home. No stops for food. Did not feel the need to, did not want to.
I the evening I called my mum on Skype and prayed with her. I did not want to call her. It was not the prayer that I did not want to do, it was calling her. I just did not want to talk to her last night. I had no news to say. I was feeling good about myself. But I called anyways because I had promised to call her to pray everyday.
Truth is I wish I didn’t. I can tell her I don’t want to call but a little part of her dies every time. She gets sad when I don’t and worried I won’t pray. I wish she trusted me to pray on my own which I do. Tomorrow I am going to try and tell her tell her I don’t want to call or talk to her. Tell her I can pray on my own like an adult I am. I will try not to care about what she thinks or feels.
Anyway I guess that was the trigger to my downfall. Doing something I don’t want to do leads my mind to disconnect from my body. My brain drifts off to its sweet and devilish escape. It craves food. At the time I did not know why I wanted a fix. Now as I am writing I do. I once again drove myself into a trap : doing something I did not want to just to please another.
So I binged. To end the day. I wanted a different day. One that was clean. Not perfect. I am done with seeking perfection. What is the point? I will never find it. It is not worth the pain. I just want to live. That is all.
Lesson learned: Call mom tomorrow, no lies, tell her you can and you will pray on your own and that there is no need to call her every second of every day. You are grown now.
If I don’t I will be hurt- suppress- escape —- to food
I want to and I must