So Christmas is over, you’re feeling bloated and bankrupt and ready to write off 2017 as a Trumpian/brexit disaster and get on with whatever else life throws at you so you set a bunch of new years resolutions, vow to stop smoking, lose a stone and finally get over your ex only to be found in a heap in your living room on February 3rd with a chronic hangover, cigarette breath mixing with the cheesy chips you devoured and a crippling shame cringe from calling the ex three times the night before.
The after Christmas limbo we all get stuck in can leave a lot of us feeling a bit lack-lustre which makes the prospect of a new year ahead a little overwhelming. I feel like this every year, the awkwardness of Christmas day and the stress that went into buying and affording presents for it all to be over in one anti-climactic day always leaves me feeling miserable and being pretty unpleasant to be around hence why I thought I’d write this post, it’s more for me than you guys but if it helps anyone else then that’s fab! Read More
I touched on this in my last post and it made me realise so many people aren’t aware of the neurological differences between a borderline’s brain and a healthy brain so I thought I’d wake ya up with some knowledge, I’m not a scientist but what I knows I gives so you’re welcome.
Someone reached out to me yesterday and asked if I would be writing again soon and because I’ve been doing so badly I have been putting it off but actually, maybe there’s something useful in getting it out of my noggin and into something at least a little productive so here I am after another night of sitting up worrying about every bad thing I’ve ever done with a headache from exhaustion.
BPD and rejection, the never ending cycle it would seem for those of us with this diagnosis. I’m dealing with rejection right now so naturally everything in my life has fallen apart and I haven’t left my bed since Saturday. Once again, I am obviously not speaking from a place of someone that’s recovered and can therefore give fantastic advice on how to deal with this crippling fear of abandonment but I can brainstorm with you and maybe we can figure it out together.
Is it ok to admit to being a fuck up?
The short answer is yes. In fact, I actually think it’s integral to recovery; if we don’t admit to fucking up (relapsing) we continue on in this perverse secret world that those who have an eating disorder have created for ourselves. I know how much easier it is for me to tell people I’ve had a good week than it is to admit to someone ‘actually I made myself sick three times yesterday because someone didn’t reply to a text in time so I convinced myself no one would ever love or understand me and so I ate (insert unfathomable amount of food here.)’ The truth is though, through admitting to people that care enough to ask how we are doing we are again holding ourselves accountable for our actions. It also opens up the dialogue of talking through any possible triggers and solutions to these triggers. Bare in mind I am speaking not from a place of high and mighty recovered bulimic but someone very much still in the throws of it (I binged this morning actually and am trying to break the purging cycle so am writing to try and stop myself)
It’s 5:48 am, I haven’t slept again and I’ve spent the day crying and binging and purging. I’m twenty three years old on Saturday and something needs to change. It occurred to me that accountability and really taking ownership of my problems may help my recovery so even though this scares the shit out of me I am finally going to be honest about everything.
I am bulimic, I have been bulimic since I was fourteen. It has swung between severe anorexia and all the way to full on binge eating disorder. the only thing that has been consistent is I have never fully recovered and created a normal and healthy relationship with food. Whether it was obsessively exercising for hours everyday or taking so many laxatives I passed out from dehydration I have done it. I am not proud of what I have done to my body and frankly I am surprised I am still alive after what I have put it through.
I have been in countless hospitals over the last decade that all tried desperately to help me, obviously to no avail. I usually would fake recovery until I was let out and would immediately go back to my disordered behaviours. I don’t think discussing numbers in terms of calories, weights etc is useful for anyone in recovery so I will never mention numbers, they are also somewhat irrelevant as anyone with an eating disorder knows; your weight does not dictate how sick your brain is.
What I will say is, I have been sick, very, very sick to the point of being threatened with sectioning, to the point of being rushed to hospital after a weight and blood pressure check left my key worker terrified I would have a heart attack at any given moment.
I don’t want to be the sick girl anymore. I want to be free and love myself and finally achieve what I know I am capable of.
Ultimately my problems come down to a total lack of self worth and I also believe my eating disorder is a by-product of Borderline personality disorder which I also have (It’s all a barrel of laughs in my head)
I was only diagnosed with Borderline personality disorder (BPD) earlier this year after a total breakdown which resulted in yet another hospital stay. Since then I have been working on building myself up again and honestly trying to know what it really means to love yourself. It shouldn’t be such a hard task but I think for so many of us it is extremely difficult and is something that can plague your life if not conquered.
So, why am I doing this? Why am I sharing this huge secret with the world even though it terrifies me?
Because I want to let go, I have lied for almost a decade. I have sabotaged opportunity after opportunity because I convince myself that I will only achieve anything if I am skinnier, I have ruined relationships beyond repair through the constant mood swings and lashing out (BPD thanks). I have hurt my family and caused constant stress for all of them because despite what my illnesses tell me; people do care about me.
I have realised coming out, owning my illness and taking responsibility for what it means will mean I don’t have the secretive, self damaging world to hide behind anymore and I might finally be able to find freedom from it. I constantly speak to friends about mental health struggles and taking charge of their own recovery but I never take my own advice. Why do I value everyone else over myself? I still don’t know but I do know that I deserve recovery too, even if it scares me. So, if you’ll have me lets journey down the path to total self acceptance together.
I wish I had cancer,
I wish I had a heart attack,
I wish I had a stroke,
I wish I had an illness that had research charity shops on every high street,
I wish I had an illness that had marathons every month for awareness,
I wish I had an illness that didn’t make paramedics feel it’s appropriate to say “but you’re pretty, can’t you just get over it?”
I wish that I had an illness that gave me a physical indication of how unwell I am other than unwashed hair,
I wish I had an illness that didn’t make people give useless advise like “keep your chin up” on a regular basis,
I wish that I didn’t have to prove my illness to people that ‘don’t believe in mental issues’
I wish that I didn’t have an illness that ruins family relationships,
I wish I had an illness that let me see some way out other than death,
I wish that in order to get help I didn’t have to reach a place so dark I may never get out.
But mostly, I wish for it all to go away.
I have suffered from depression since I was fourteen years old.
I have had countless therapists, anti-depressants, yoga sessions, positive thinking hypnosis sessions and God knows what else.
It is still so hard to get help, so hard that just this week I had to call a crisis team that has ignored my calls for weeks to try and find some relief. So hard that this week when I was picked up in an ambulance the paramedics told me I looked ‘too normal’ to be ill and that ‘I was just a pretty girl.’
I want no part of this illness. It has stripped me of self-esteem, friendships, countless jobs and opportunities, romantic relationships, support from my family and the will to carry on.
I don’t want to be a self-indulgent depressed mess.
I want a life, I want a girlfriend, I want confidence, I want a job, I want to do something other than exist.
The hardest part of this illness is not everything I have listed above, it is knowing that no matter what I do, what therapy I take, what medication I am prescribed I will always, always live in fear of the next relapse.
I am tired of fighting.
I am tired of crying.
I am tired of begging for help.
I am tired.
Disclaimer* I am well aware of the suffering all cancer patients are going through, many of my family are currently suffering and have died of said illness. This article is in no way meant to demean or belittle that suffering. It is an article meant to shock and grab attention for mental health which is so desperately needed. We cannot continue to treat illnesses of the mind differently to illnesses of the physical body.
Having spoken to Faysal on an off for over a year we finally got together to shoot a few months back and I have since become very good friends with him. Faysal is still at university and has already become a force to be reckoned with. He has a distinct style that is mainly influenced by his own struggles with mental health which is a subject very close to home for me. His work is fearless and he strives to create an honesty which I really appreciate. Read More
Long time no see! I’ll catch you up, last month my gorgeous girlfriend and I were asked to shoot for Pimp my Pants new handmade lingerie collection so we said hell yeah and went off to Birmingham to shoot with my favourite photographer James Beddoes. Lounging around in some saucy underwear with your girlfriend is not the worst way to spend your day!
The work was published on sticks and stones agency; an emporium for rad shit so I’ll link everything down below but hey here’s some cheeky pictures!
Sometimes you have to just cover your hair in oil, take your clothes off and look strange!
Transform yourself daily, use yesterday’s failures as inpiration for today.
Life is hard and achieving your goals is even harder but we can’t give up. This was captured on a day when I was feeling awful and just wanted to lie in bed and feel sorry for myself but from pain we created some beautiful art. Keep pushing on little earthlings ☯️
Captured by Holly Meadows
MUA Laurel Woodward
Hair extensions Beautyworks