Be kind to you

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The beauty of blogging is in the freedom to write or not write. I have not been writing lately for no particular reason other than it just has not been the right time and I have not been in the right mindset. That said, my struggle to “be” continues. At times the fight is harder and in rare moments I am able to find some peace. I cherish those moments. Walks by the dunes, staring at the beach, the sky, the stars, drawing, designing, making clothes.

Then, there, I fell free, connected, one body, one soul. My physical appearance no longer matters. My bulging stomach becomes an insignificant worry and the XXL clothes? Well … just another thing of this world.

Since I last wrote, I have moved away from London, traveled to Africa and now back in the Netherlands. It has been a long long journey. I started a new job, a tedious, toxic one, but that was my choice. Now I need to work on getting out of it and finding something better. Living a well deserved life demands effort.

When I am not drained of energy, I motivate myself towards my freedom. Towards being the person that I really want to be. Although that remains undefined, I know aspects of what brings me peace within. Creativity being one of them. Self-expression, whether confronting a small conflict or asserting my ideas is another.

Since I have been denying myself of that right to “be”, it seems easier to give in and settle with the mistaken habits, of being someone else; until I realize, all I am doing is giving my power away to invisible influences. Quickly, I lose myself.

So, the struggle continues. I suspect, there is a high probability that  this will be a lifetime struggle. Though I hope, it will become easier with time.

I used to think that I needed a break from the World because it was so mean to me. Truth is, I was cruel to myself. Then I had another realization. There will always be bitter times, the trick is to live it. Feel it. I do not want to forget or escape anymore. It has not worked. Bingeing, over-exercising, starving, trying to be perfect has not worked. Self-torture has failed. Self-love is surely the answer.

I hope to have a little more of it today, tomorrow and in all the other days I have left on this earth.

This I write to you and myself, so we both remember to “be”.

izaotee

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Staying away from temptation

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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

First Overeaters Anonymous Meeting

Yesterday I went to my first ever OA meeting. I was a complete mess.

It was a rainy day, after strength training at the gym I had planned to attend an OA meeting I found online. Bus 24 which would take me there did not show up. But since getting to this meeting made me sacrifice running on the treadmill. My saturday had to be worthwhile. In the rain at 10 45 a.m I knocked on a black taxi’s window. I stepped in, stressed, irritated, pointed to the address and coldly asked the driver to take me there.

He said he knew the way, but in my stressed state, I was rude to him. I kept asking are you sure you know the way. The meeting was to start at 11 00 a m.

I called earlier and was told to come a few minutes before for some explanation. When I stepped in, two ladies was standing at the door. One with a cigarette in her hands. I cannot stand smokers anymore. My ex-boyfriend smoked and my Dad was a chain smoker. It killed him. Clearly annoyed at her smoke, I unconsciously waved my hands around to get the smoke out of my face. It was a rude gesture, but I was stressed. In hindsight, worried, scared about this meeting.

A tall Dutch woman, friendly and direct asked me about my past. I was a little shocked at how direct she was. But I guess, she is entitled to because you have to actually have a problem with food to be there. I started talking about my anorexia, the sentence was not even finished when I burst into tears. An abundance of emotions surface. I could not believe I was there. I felt pain, shame, fear but also pride and relief.

The woman reassured me that I was not alone in this anymore. As I peeked at the people in the room, I realised how even the most ordinary looking person was there too. Compulsive eating does not choose its prey. Young, not so young, women, men, tall, short, slim, not so slim. Food was our love and our enemy.

I cried all through the meeting. I am not giving up. I will step in there again next week. This time I’ll bring tissues.

I am not alone in this anymore. There are others out there. Together we are determined to recover, even if not completely at least to manage a little.