It’s ok to lose your spark

I keep seeing a quote pop up (which of course I can’t find when I want to reference it) something about the tools you used to survive may not be the same ones to heal. I’ve definitely got the wording wrong but the message is there.

The tools I used to survive were binging, be it food or shopping, starving, purging, cutting, isolation… I could go on but basically, yes they helped me to survive, but they will not help me to heal. The only two I can really say that I have not done this year is cutting and purging. These two were my biggest release and two of the worst physically. The others I have been consciously working on doing less of… not going to lie, the shopping one has been my go to recently. This might sound like the best, but my bank balance does not agree. I have very little really to show for my excessive spending, so although I have not physically hurt myself, mentally it’s damaged me. I have undone years of hard work to manage money better and save, now it feels like I am starting from scratch.

Lately I have been struggling so have wanted to turn to my old methods of coping. I have focused so damn hard on trying to hold myself together without them, that I forgot about the many healthy tools I have. I’ve isolated myself and not spoken my truth all that much. I stopped meditating. I stopped taking long baths to relax (it’s where my best blogs come from, I’m writing from the bath right now! How have I ignored this one?!) I have bent over backwards (when I’m not isolating) to put other people’s needs and feelings first. I’ve filled my diary and not taken time alone, to the point that I made myself ill.

You know what though? That’s ok. I forgive myself for that.

I tell other people to put their mental health first yet often I don’t do that. I am pulling myself back on track though. I am speaking my truth. I am standing up for myself and my mental health. I am putting myself first. I am surrounding myself with people that build me up, not bring me down. I am doing the things that I want to do and prioritising the people and things that bring me the most joy. I am deep into this journey of recovery, yes I have set backs but man am I learning (then forgetting, then relearning) some things along the way.

  • It is not selfish to take time out for myself.
  • It is ok to say no to people and I am not obligated to explain myself.
  • It is ok and very important to speak my truth.
  • My mental health and my happiness should be my priority.
  • I cannot pour from an empty cup.
  • I am worth more than what I look like.
  • Other people’s opinions on what I look like or what I eat, are none of my concern and likely stem from their own insecurities.

Another quote, which popped into my head while writing this:

It’s ok if you fall down and lose your spark. Just make sure that when you get back up, you rise as the whole damn fire. – Colette Werden

So I am getting back up and I am the whole. Damn. Fire.

Stay strong warriors 💜

Bittersweet Symphony

Mental illness… it’s a funny one… not funny like ‘haha’. Funny like, ‘tricksy little bitch that sets out to ruin your day and you have to fight against it on the daily just to function like a semi-normal human being and sometimes you just want to cry because fuck you mental illness’ (I purposely didn’t use a comma here, anyone that knows me will know that is how I actually talk).

I’ve said it before, but I will say it again… mental illness does not discriminate. It doesn’t only affect those that have a shitty life. You could have everything going for you and mental illness will just creep in all ‘Oooh hey there you seem like you have it all… it would be a shame if something were to… FUCK. WITH. YOUR. BRAIN. MOOHAHAHAHAHAHA!!’

Now don’t get me wrong, I’ve had some trauma and heartache in life. I have had things happen, even recently, that I think completely justifies my feelings. That being said, I have also experienced a kind of happiness I didn’t even know I could feel. I have started to feel like my life is making sense. Finally a reason for all the shitty things that have happened to me, it all brought me to this place, this place where I could be so gloriously happy. Now there are those that will see this happiness and joy I have found, and assume that means I am cured. As if mental illness cares if I found some happiness. It doesn’t. I still get anxious, I still fight daily with my eating disorder and a lot of the time with body dysmorphia. I still get overwhelmed by all the things I have to try and process and go into shut down. I have still felt sad (I am grateful it hasn’t been full depression, but I still get a little lost). This has brought much confusion and in turn more anxiety to my life at times lately. For the last few weeks I have just started to bury my head in the sand. Don’t want to have that difficult conversation? Avoid them. Don’t know how to process something that is happening? Find any distraction I can, go to the happy bubble and just ignore it. Feel dissatisfied with a certain area of my life? Buy things. Buy all the things. I haven’t really known what to say to people, so instead I have avoided most people and only really made time for a select few. I have tried countless times to write a blog, but the words have just been so jumbled in my head that I can’t string a sentence together.

The reason I am able to do this right now is because last week I had a mini meltdown, then I reached out, admitted I was struggling and that I needed some time off work. It hasn’t been long and I can’t say that it cured me (if only!) but man has it helped. I’ve felt ridiculously guilty for not being in work though – I literally took two full days off, that’s it – yet I have felt so bad because of the happiness bubble. I have told myself ‘you can’t be so bad that you need time off when you can still feel some happiness’. Well to that inner bitch thought, I say SCREW YOU! Why should I have to wait until I feel like I want to die before I will give myself a damn break?! Why do we do that to ourselves? Plenty of people will take a sick day from work if they have a cold and not feel guilty because it’s not pneumonia. I have had to be reminded of this in work and in life recently. I kept telling my friends who were struggling ‘you can’t pour from an empty cup, take care of yourself too!’ it took a few people insisting that I take my own advice before I actually did it.

I will say that again just in case anyone needs that extra push like I did… YOU CAN’T POUR FROM AN EMPTY CUP, TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF TOO!

I got so good at self-care on my recovery journey, but at the moment I have been pretty rubbish at it. Today is the first real day that I stopped worrying so much about getting everything done and just took the day as it came. My anxiety has been a royal bitch this evening but I have definitely stepped up my self-care game and put down the guilt card for a few hours. My life at the moment is bittersweet – I have found happiness and love, but it doesn’t cure years worth of pain. I am better than I have ever been in some areas of life and completely lost, dazed and confused in others. It’s going to take a little time, but I am going to somehow process the madness going through my head and get back on track with my recovery journey. I’ve been letting that shit slip and it is time for me to work it out. I took my wallow time, I gave myself a break, now it’s time to kick some ass like the warrior that I am.

Reminders:

Don’t assume that mental illness goes away just because some things are going right.

Don’t forget to check in on your people.

Be patient with them, just because it looks like they are happy, doesn’t mean they are not still struggling with life.

Lastly… Stay strong warriors! ❤ 

New York New York!

I am writing this on very little sleep so if some of it doesn’t make sense I apologise!! I just need to say though… I bloody did it!!!

I have pushed through my fears and done many things on my recovery road. This though, this was the biggest so far.

I went to New York City all by myself. Alone. Completely and utterly alone.

Before I left I was spiralling. The day before my flight I wasn’t even excited. I reluctantly packed and faked excitement. When people asked me I told them I was just nervous. I was nervous, I was absolutely terrified! But I also felt a sadness so deep I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to enjoy a single minute of it all. A few people suggested that once I was there, I would feel better. I would feel so proud of myself for doing it, that I would forget for a little while of my sadness.

But that’s not how it works I thought. My heart feels broken and my mind won’t switch off, how am I supposed to forget that? Well maybe because I have never pushed that far out of my comfort zone when I felt that bad, I have never managed to experience it.

I felt it though! I didn’t forget completely, it was still there in the back of my mind. It wasn’t in the way though. I explored, I laughed, I chatted to people, I totally bossed the crowds which would have given me panic attacks before. I bloody did it! It felt good! It felt like an actual break from my pain, even if it never went completely.

My driver on the way back to the airport brought up anxiety in crowds, I agreed and told him I used to have panic attacks. He was so relieved to know that it wasn’t just him, it felt so wonderful to give him that. A simple cry of “me too!” which has made someone feel less alone. We talked for the entire journey and agreed on the importance of pushing through your fears. There are many quotes about comfort zones and how ‘life blossoms on the other side of your comfort zone’ or something like that. I have never agreed with that more than I do right now.

It may feel terrifying. You may want to stay in the sadness, because you know what to expect, it’s normal… but get out. Push yourself to do the things that scare you. Speak your truth. Face your fears. Get out of your comfort zone and see how the world blossoms for you. Sometimes you’ll have setbacks. You’ll speak your truth and not get the answer you want, if any at all, but you’ll survive. You’ll push out of your comfort zone and something might go wrong, but you’ll survive. You’ll face your fears and feel just as terrified, but you’ll survive. At least you tried, at least you gave it your best shot. It might not go how you expect or how you want it to go, but it beats the hell out of never trying, always wondering what if. Instead of what if it all goes wrong… ask yourself, what if it all goes right?

Be free, be brave. Stay strong warriors 💜

How are you?

I met up with friends yesterday and I was visibly sad. My one friend asked “why didn’t you tell me earlier when I asked how you were?” my answer was that I thought I was ok, but it changed. She told me that I should have told her it changed.

How many people do that though? When it changes, especially when it changes suddenly, do you tell people? I am mostly an open book when I am not that bad. But the worse I get, the harder it gets to just speak up.

So when people do ask how you are, do you lie? You can normally tell when it was a greeting rather than a question. When people ask how you are, a lot of the time, it’s just small talk. They don’t really want to know, they are not really asking. If I can muster up the energy to lie, I’ll tell them “not too bad” or “fine, just tired”. Sometimes I just flat out ignore the question.

Them: “Hey Jade how are you?”

Me: “Oh heey, how are you?”

Most people don’t even notice. Of the ones that do notice, very few will bother to ask again.

Someone I don’t know from another mental health page asked me how I was earlier. I didn’t want to lie, so I typed out exactly how I was. Then I selected the whole message, cut, and sent “not too bad how are you?”.

I have been seemingly happy this week to those that don’t know me or care to notice. Halloween is my favourite holiday. I have danced, laughed, been out with friends, talked a lot about all my exciting plans. There have been times where I have felt totally ok. But usually when I am driving or sat alone in a meeting room in work, or at home, I sigh big endless sighs. I start to tear up and think I’m about to cry, then nothing. I put on music and force myself to sing to cheer up, then realise that 3 songs have played and I’ve been silent and lost in my thoughts.

When asked how I was, before I sent my lie tonight, this is what I wrote:

“Like I’m doing really well and taking big steps. Then I catch myself feeling totally and completely lost and my heart beats so hard that I feel like it’ll surely burst. I want to cry or scream but nothing comes out. I want to see my friends but I don’t want to go out. I want to ask them for help, but every time I go to write a message, I think that I’m a burden and a drama queen. They have their own problems, they don’t need this shit from me. They don’t even like me, they just don’t know how to tell me without hurting my feelings. So instead of reaching out to my maybe friends, I am isolating myself and crying tearless sobs in my room while my heart tries to burst out of my chest and my head is so full I feel like I might pass out.”

Once I sent my lie, I got straight to writing this blog. I know that I will feel better. I know that this too shall pass. I know I have felt way worse than this and survived. I know I will be ok, but I also know that my self sabotaging brain is in isolation mode. So to my people that I haven’t contacted. To the ones I’ve seemed distant with. The ones that I keep pushing away. I’m sorry. This too shall pass.

Ahh the battles we fight. Speaking up gives me strength. Tomorrow is a new day.

Stay strong warriors 💜

Sunday Thoughts

Hello lovelies!

Sunday is my day of resetting, recharging, cleaning, sometimes gyming and today a little bit of blogging.

This morning I sat and thought about everything that has been going on with me lately. There have been setbacks, heartbreak, tears, anxiety meltdowns, questioning my choices, feeling like I can’t go on…

There have also been wonderful moments, love, breakthroughs, happy memories made, overcoming fears, pushing out of comfort zones.

I read a quote about forgetting how far you’ve come, because you’ve been busy looking forward. I’ve totally been doing that. I have been so busy focusing on what’s coming next, that I haven’t spent much time thinking about how far I’ve come. Sometimes it just hits me and I can’t quite believe it’s real. I can’t believe that I am living this life and not just getting from one day to the next. It’s not all sunshine and roses, nobody’s life ever is, but my goodness even with my setbacks, it is so much better than it has ever been.

I am reminded by my tribe that have seen me through this journey, just how much I’ve grown. One friend told me that I am still the same person, I am just no longer hiding. I feel like this is true, the person that I am now, she has always been there. I was just buried under fear, depression, anxiety… I wanted to do the things I’m doing now, I just always said “I can’t”. Now I am pushing back on that fear. I am challenging my negative ‘What if it all goes wrong’ with ‘but what if it all goes right?’.

I still feel pain, sadness, fear… I just let myself feel it. I really feel it, I open myself up to it and let it in. I spent years of my life fighting the pain and never winning. Mental illness doesn’t work that way, you can’t just switch it off, I’m sure everyone would if they could. By fighting it, I only made it worse, it lasted longer and took longer to heal. Now when it happens, I remind myself that this feeling is only visiting, and it is ok to let it in and feel it.

Last week I spent the best part of three days sobbing uncontrollably because my heart was breaking. I have not let myself cry like that in actual years! My bestie, being the awesome human that she is, turned up at my house, in full armour on her white horse, ready to fight my battles for me! I was already crying but man did it open up the floodgates the second she walked in the room. You know that loud, ugly face, heaving crying… yeah it was a sight to be seen I’m sure! She climbed into my bed and lay with me, without saying a word for what felt like hours while I cried.

The next day, my momma came into my room (where I was still crying – how I didn’t end up dehydrated I’ll never know) and told me she had run a bath for me and my sister was coming over for a movie night and take away. What a wonderful tribe I have right?! Even through their own troubles they are right there to support me, as I am with them. Ride or die tribe vibes over here!!

I allowed myself to feel it, to cry, to breakdown, but I also acknowledged that this pain wouldn’t last. I told myself that I have survived 100% of my heart breaks, trauma and bad days so far and I could survive this too. I reminded myself that I have people like my bestie, my momma, my sister and the rest of my tribe, ready to help me back up when I fall. If I have learned one thing on this recovery journey, it’s that I do not need to face it alone.

A week later and I’ve just come back from a wonderful trip to London. The first part of my trip I did all by myself, which was a huge step for me! I am so proud of the woman I am allowing myself to be now. I wouldn’t be here without my tribe though, so thank you to my ride or die tribe. Those that sit with me in the dark and help pick me back up when I’m ready. I am grateful for you every single day!

Find your tribe, they are out there and they need you too!

I must stop writing now because the cleaning and resetting part of my Sunday has not started! I just want to say though… my usual sign off to my blogs is ‘stay strong warriors’ but as I wrote it today, I felt like I had to explain… staying strong doesn’t mean fighting it. It takes great strength to let the pain in, to talk about it, to really feel it. Sometimes it takes more strength to feel it than to fight it, but the outcome is so much better. So when I tell my fellow warriors to stay strong, I am not telling you to fight and bury your pain. Let in it and then let it leave, the sun always shines brightest after the rain!

Stay strong warriors 💜

The Road to Recovery

Recovery is a road that terrifies me sometimes. It’s also a road that excites me.

Along this road I never know what I’m going to come up against. I have hit bumps I didn’t know I’d hit. I have unearthed some buried issues. I have acknowledged some long standing issues that I had ignored. I turned a previously binge eating disorder into a binge fast cycle. I started making myself sick when I got overly anxious. I lost a lot of weight through this and still now feel guilty when people compliment me on my weight loss.

I have felt like I opened Pandora’s box – my own personal Pandora’s box, a Jade box, with all my inner demons! At times I felt like people didn’t understand or accept my pain. Some see me doing well and think it’s all gone. Some people don’t recognise my disordered eating because I’m still overweight – so because I’m not ‘skinny’ I should still be doing everything I can to lose weight, whether or not it’s healthy. Trying to love yourself in a world that teaches you from a young age, you should always want to change, is so hard! (Shout out to my people that encourage me to love myself every day!)

I’ve wanted to give up, go back into the black hole of numbness and stay there. I’ve wanted to jump straight off the recovery road because I was afraid of what could happen next.

Then there’s the good side of recovery. I have made it over those bumps…

(I picture some epic journey over a snowy mountain, twists and turns all the time… I feel like Drew Barrymore would play me in the movie. It would be epic! 🤔 Actually to most it would be a small hill, like a mole hill… see what I did there?)

Ahem… back on track…

I have worked through some of those long buried issues. I have acknowledged and forgiven myself for some of the mistakes I’ve made. I’ve also dealt with and forgiven some of the people that hurt me. I have discovered new and healthy ways of coping with my pain. I have learned to stand up for myself, to speak up when someone hurts me. *sings This is Me from The Greatest Showman*

I have done things I never would have done before:

• I applied for a job even though I’d have to travel for the interview, and got it!

• I booked a holiday to New York for just me! I’m not going for a few months but it’s almost paid, no going back now!

• I have let other people book holidays for me and not planned a single thing.

• I have not prepared for those holidays until the last minute and didn’t over think it.

• I travelled to France by myself to surprise my sister in Disneyland.

I could go on for ages but those have been the biggest things for me so far!

It’s not always easy, I still slip back into old habits. I sometimes feel like I am standing on a cliff edge – if I look straight ahead, the view is beautiful. I can see all the wonderful things that are there for me. Then if I look down, I see a black hole. So yeah, I’m both good and bad. I’m healing and recovering and becoming this person that I’m so proud of. I am feeling so much love for the people around me, those that support, encourage and inspire me. I’m also damaged, I have scars and some still open wounds. Sometimes I feel empty and then terrified that it won’t go. Sometimes I feel like a badass warrior.

This pain that has been with me since childhood, it was never going to go away over night. Maybe I will always be both. Honestly though, as much as some days I wish to just be untroubled by these things – it all makes me who I am. It makes me the person that is able to help others. I make a difference in people’s lives by sharing my story, by encouraging and inspiring others to join me on the road of recovery. I am a more caring person because of my pain. I believe that everything happens for a reason, I might not have all the answers yet, but I can’t wait to find out where my road is leading.

It’s ok to be ok, and not ok at the same time.

To anyone in the dark, let these words be your light. There can be joy again. Stand in the sun with me ☀️ it’s ok if it rains. When it rains, we dance it out 💃🏼🕺(my fellow Shondaland fans will get these references. Shondaland for life!)

Stay strong warriors 💜

Reflection

Today has been such a big deal for me. I didn’t even realise how big of a deal until I took a little moment to reflect. I’ll start with a little back story for understanding.

I applied for a job and when I read the advert some weeks ago, I saw right at the bottom: ‘the interviews will be held in Titchfield.’ I read that and submitted my application anyway. Now there was a time that I wouldn’t have even applied for the job if I’d read that. I wouldn’t have cared how good the job was – I was not making my way to Titchfield for the interview by myself, nope. Well I passed the application process and got invited to interview which I had today – fingers crossed for me everyone!

Last night I was feeling so nervous. I wasn’t even that nervous for the interview, I knew that I had prepared, I was ready and what will be will be. I was really nervous about the travel. My train this morning was at 7:44am – that meant I had to be up, dressed (presentable for an interview) and out of the house by 7:15am! I am not a morning person and I am normally still in bed at that time! I have had nightmares that I was late. I never dreamt of the interview itself, in my dreams I didn’t even make it there. This morning when I left the house just after 7:15am and made it to the train station with time to spare I was so relieved! I felt amazing, I was all like ‘Yeeeah look at me bossing life – screw you anxiety!!’.

Then it happened… the train arrived, I barely made it on because I wasn’t ballsy enough to push my way on. I got on the wrong carriage (because people were blocking the right one) and then I suddenly couldn’t speak to ask anyone to move so I could find my paid for seat. I thought to myself – ‘no problem, at the next stop I will find my seat’. That did not happen; it took me 3-4 stops, almost crying, getting trapped amongst a bunch of tall people and a wall where I suddenly felt like I couldn’t breathe, and almost falling into a full blown panic attack and pulling the emergency stop.

I am fully aware of how silly and possibly crazy that may sound. Those who don’t get anxiety will probably want to say “get a grip woman” to those that understand anxiety though… you feel me!

I was texting my family the whole time, while they tried to encourage me, calm me down and convince me to just ask people to move. You know what was awesome though? A complete stranger was getting off and stopped to ask me if I was ok. There are wonderful humans in the world. I totally couldn’t say anything more than ‘yeeeah’ and I was visibly shaking, so obviously lying about being ok! Thank you to that lovely human because it encouraged me to move, which eventually got me to my seat! There I managed to calm my breathing, set myself up to start prepping for the interview and was back on track.

After about 30 minutes of writing down all the awesome things I have achieved in work and could talk about in my interview, I felt fully prepared. I didn’t want to over think it, so I put my papers away and decided to relax. It was only while I was sat listening to my audiobook, having just done a little meditation, that I realised – ‘I am on the way to Titchfield for a job interview, on my freaking own!!!’ I am not entirely sure as I write this, but as sad as it may sound to some, the 3 hours train journey is the actual furthest I have ever travelled alone!! For real. I am 28 next week and I very rarely travel anywhere alone! BIG. DEAL!

I am telling you this because a year ago I wouldn’t be here. A year ago I wouldn’t have applied for a job that I really really want because I would have let anxiety and depression stop me. I am not all healed, but I am living anyway. I am continuing to grow, change, better myself and recover. I get bad days, I have minor setbacks, major setbacks even, but I keep going. Four years ago I almost gave up on my life, I believed at that time that I could never feel happy again. This morning I sat on that train, grinning like a Cheshire cat because I was out there living my life despite it all.

To anyone that feels like they are lost, in the dark, empty: you are not alone. You can live, and be happy despite it all. You can have, be or do anything you set your mind to (just as my bestie tells me all the time). Depression, anxiety, panic attacks, eating disorders, or anything else that you may have, it can’t stop you. It will take time, it will take work, it will sometimes feel like you’re going to get whiplash from going back and forth on the recovery road. I promise you though, it will be worth it.

Stay Strong Warriors 💜

💜

Coping Tools

Hey there!
I felt the need to write a post about some of my coping tools, it may not work for everyone but you never know, it could help someone!
So if you’ve read all my blogs, or know me personally, you’ll know that I didn’t always talk about my problems. Before I had my breakdown (see ‘First Blog Post’ if you have no idea what I am talking about) I barely spoke to anyone about my mental illness, everyone thought I was the happiest person they knew!
Now I made it years like that – I am not saying life was all bad. I am not even telling you to become an over sharer like I possibly am now (hello public blog with strangers reading about my life!). I am just saying that life is better now. I still have my low periods, I still struggle, but I feel like I have more good days and I have developed an even stronger support network.
Ok so you know what I am going to say here… talk about it! Tell someone close to you that you’re struggling. These people will likely just want to help you which you may not be ready for, I call it going into ‘fixer mode’ I have learnt that I need to tell my people (usually my mother) “I just need to get it out, I don’t want you to fix me”. Then go to town – rant, rave, scream, cry if you have to, just get it out… you’ll be surprised at how much better you will feel.
I now talk openly about my mental illness. I have shocked a couple of managers in work with my brutal honesty. I haven’t done it to get sympathy, I have simply told them up front so that if I am having a bad day, that’s not the time I suddenly have to inform them “oh yeah sometimes I have panic attacks/get super depressed/have anxiety so bad I have to go home”. I hope that they find it refreshing as there are no hidden surprises, it’s all laid out for them and I explain to them what my needs are while I am ill. If you had a physical illness you would explain to your work, what adjustments need to be made to help you to do your job, I do exactly that, but for mental illness. This has helped me no end in work and my managers have been able to help me effectively when I am having a bad day, even if that is just by sending me home!
If you are really not ready to talk to anyone just yet, I strongly suggest writing it down. You don’t have to set up a blog and share it with the world, but get a diary, write it in notes on your phone, whatever it takes. Write down every feeling, every irrational or scary thought. When you write it, picture all those horrible thoughts being released through the ink or the keyboard/touchscreen or whatever you use. That is what I do for every blog I write.
Write a letter to someone who hurt you, what would you say to them if you could? You don’t have to send it, but it will help to release some of the pain of it. I have written letters to people about some of the most traumatic experiences of my life. I have never showed those letters to anyone. Writing those letters helped me to feel some sort of closure about it and after that and a lot more self development, I can finally say I forgive those people for what they did.
Forgiveness is a big one, many people will say the same. Holding on to hate doesn’t hurt the person that hurt you, it only hurts you. Forgiveness doesn’t just go to people that hurt you though, it is totally for yourself too. I had to learn to forgive myself for a lot of things, I still have to forgive myself for new things all the time. Some things take more work than others… I forgive myself for drinking too much the other night and having a raging hangover the next day – easy. I forgive myself for thinking that I deserved to feel this pain, for beating myself up for so many years. I forgive myself for being young and naive and not knowing any better. I forgive myself now for some of the not so healthy coping tools I use sometimes. Those are not easy, but they are so much more important.
This blog has quickly become an essay as per usual so I will end with one last one, my favourite one…. Dance. It. Out. I don’t just mean swaying a little in your living room… I mean full scale crazy dancing. Exercise releases good endorphins – what better way than some crazy dancing! Pick a song, a dance it out song that makes you happy and use that song. When I dance it out with my bestie, we use T-Pain – Church. When I am alone, my happy song is Rusted Roots – Send me on my way or most recently, Meghan Trainor – Better When I’m Dancing. When these songs come on, I will instantly start smiling and even if I can’t properly dance it out (like when I am driving or sat at my desk in work with headphones in) it improves my mood greatly!
So I will stop now before this becomes a novel! I hope that you’ve enjoyed reading my ramblings, please share with your family and friends as you never know who might need it, they might not be talking about it yet!!
Stay strong warriors!

Maybe swearing will help

Do you ever get those days that you say fuck off more than anything else?
I am one of those people that swears like a sailor so I say it a lot anyway… but then some days I find myself just saying ‘oh fuck ooooff’ more than usual!

Today has been one of those days. Hell, it’s been one of those weeks!

I am all for talking about your issues and healing. I’m trying to get rid of all my negative shit and become all zen or something. But sometimes… I feel terrible to say, but I’m also all about honesty… sometimes I miss my bubble. I miss the days when I buried my pain, when I buried the bad memories under so much food I didn’t need to think about them. I miss my comfort zone.

This new place, this place where I talk about my issues and people know so they make me eat and eat correctly, and they watch me after I’ve eaten so I can’t go throw up my feelings. This place where I think about the damage that has been done and try to overcome it…. oh. Fuck. Ooooff!

I didn’t know when I decided to heal that I would open Pandora’s fucking box!! Who knew how much shit I buried in there under all that food?!
I want to heal. I need to heal. I want to let go and to get out of my comfort zone. I want to experience my life and do new things and just live.

But today, today I just want to say fuck oooff to all the bad memories and the horrible feelings and the worry that I’ve eaten 3 actual meals today and I feel sick. Fuck oooff to the barely any sleep this week. Fuck oooff to my body that is confused at my trying to eat real meals so I’m bloating. Fuck off fuck off fuck off.

Doesn’t even look like a word anymore.

Recovery is bumpy, yesterday I pushed myself to try something new even though I felt like crap and I loved it. Today I forgive myself that instead of working out like my friend came over to do, we sat and chatted about life.

Some days you will surprise yourself at what you can achieve and you celebrate yourself. Some days you won’t do as much but you celebrate yourself anyway.

Yesterday I went way out of my comfort zone and tried something new – fucking well done me!

Today it was a struggle to leave the house, but I ate 3 meals and didn’t throw up – fucking well done me!

In the interest of looking for the positives even when you have to look harder – today I am grateful for:

  1. Dry shampoo (girls you feel me here)
  2. Coffee (this one I can use every day)
  3. I did not get caught in traffic and my playlist was on a good shuffle on the way in to work.
  4. My friends and family are fucking awesome.
  5. My friend also didn’t want to work out so wasn’t disappointed when I asked if we could just relax.

Stay strong warriors! Keep fighting the fight. I am right there in the trenches with you. It’s pretty shitty, but we just need a good playlist to keep us going!

Down the rabbit hole

Hello to all my lovely readers! It’s been ages since I wrote a blog, I have had a few people ask me when the next blog will be posted, my response has been “when I can find the words”.

As some of you have seen from Instagram or if I’ve told you in person, I hit a bump in the recovery road. I have had good days in between but I’ve been working on myself and haven’t been ready to write the words.

I described it to a few people as ‘falling down the rabbit hole’. It was the easiest explanation I could give. I fell right into the rabbit hole of depression a few months ago and I suddenly forgot how to get back out. Like jumping into deep water and forgetting how to swim. I freaked, my anxiety told me that this time, it might not go away. I felt like I had no control over my feelings or anything going on in my life. I felt a mixture of that empty, lonely, twisted depression, with a lovely dose of fear and panic that I didn’t know when it would stop. I started blurting out my feelings to random people, talking about stuff that some people don’t know me well enough to know…this usually happened while I was drunk. If you were one of those people, I apologise… I am working through some stuff and I thank you for not laughing or looking at me like I have two heads.

I even started daydreaming about killing myself (I realise daydreaming is a strange word to use, but roll with it). I stood on the platform at a tube station in London and seriously started contemplating jumping onto the tracks. In my head it was easier than what my anxiety told me was surely to come, the long long months of emptiness. It’s a scary place that rabbit hole.

Because I was feeling so out of control, I started looking for other ways I could take control. I told myself I was going to come out of the depression eventually, but how long? I wanted something to control to make me feel better. I chose food. I have always been a stress eater, I binge eat to try and fill the emptiness. Well because of my hard work doing Slimming World and exercise, I had lost just over a stone. I didn’t want to undo all that hard work but I wasn’t in the right headspace to diet, nor could I motivate myself to workout. So instead of binge eating all day every day, I ate very little. I didn’t even notice it at first, I wasn’t aware that was why I was doing it, I told everyone I just wasn’t hungry. I ignored the whisper in my head that told me I was forcing myself to be one of those people that doesn’t eat when they are sad.

I started feeling slimmer, it felt good. Then it got worse – I started to binge again, but because I had been ‘doing so well’ (I understand that it is not good but those are words I told myself) I made myself sick. The first few times it was after a binge, then I started making myself sick whenever I felt really anxious or sad. I associated being sick with a release of pain for years because of migraines, so it became my release of sadness too. I started to lose more weight and the compliments started coming “oh Jade you’ve lost so much weight, you look amazing” it made me feel good but also really ashamed, I felt like a fraud. Some of my friends found out what I was doing after they complimented me, I blurted out exactly why I had lost more weight (sorry for those that I randomly dropped that bombshell on).

These are the words I was so desperate to avoid saying to everyone. A select few was one thing, but a public blog? I couldn’t just write and leave that part out, I tried believe me. It felt like lying, like sugar coating the truth and I don’t want to do that. Mental illness isn’t sugar coated. I started this blog to help people and to help myself, so giving half truths wasn’t the way I wanted to play it.

I told myself I didn’t want to write it because I didn’t want people to judge me. However when I finally told my sister recently, she said that the reason I hadn’t told everyone, was because I didn’t want to stop. That hit me hard, because it was true! I was scared to share this side mostly because I knew if it’s there in black and white, I can’t hide from it, I would really have to stop. I’ve been feeling so much better depression wise and the anxiety has calmed down. Now it’s time I tackle this too. I need a healthier outlet for my pain and I’m going to find one, so that the next time I fall down that rabbit hole, I don’t make the same mistakes I have been making.

I’ve been eating better recently, I’m planning to start doing Slimming World and start the exercise properly again. I haven’t made myself sick in about 2 weeks which is progress. I am so grateful for my recovery journey this last year, if it had not been for that, I probably wouldn’t have asked for help so early. I could have gotten way further into this and would find it much harder to stop.

This is why I feel it’s so important to share the truth. There are some people afraid to ask for help, those who feel completely alone. Nobody should feel that way, not ever. Mental illness is a horrible thing to live with and people need to know that it’s ok to ask for help. You don’t have to fight alone.