This week I have been staying at D’s house as we are revising together for our finals (2 weeks to go!).
It is the first time in over two years that I have stayed at someones house for more than a night and had someone else cook for me. I guess it must seem totally normal to most people, like an exciting week away. However, for someone suffering with an eating disorder it is quite a challenge. The loss of control can be frightening.
All in all, I think I’ve done pretty well. D has been really great and stocked up on some food that he knew wouldn’t freak me out. I also coped well with dinner apart from on one occasion. One night dinner was later than I was expecting and I didn’t really know how to cope with it. Although the right thing to do was to have an extra snack, eating more than my food plan before dinner is really difficult. As a result, I just made myself endure the painful hunger pangs and try and carry on revising. Unsurprisingly, my standard of work was poor. I achieved nothing. Ed was happy, I was in pain.
The second most challenging task was eating cereal from a different bowl. This must sound absolutely bizarre, but since I stopped weighing my food I have become comfortable with having my cereal from a certain bowl. I made sure we had the bowls at home and I also took some with me to uni. I have eaten out of them for about 10 months! In these bowls I can tell when I have about the right amount of cereal and so they’re a safety net. However, I have learn’t that they are just another way of seeking control. Sometimes it is hard to break out of these safety nets but it is really important not to let things as silly as a bowl control the way you do things.
I guess every challenge presents an opportunity to learn and over the past few days I have learn’t some valuable lessons. I learn’t that you can always rely on your good friends to have your back (I knew this one already!). I have learn’t that I can hand over control and I will survive. I have also learn’t that I need to let go of my safety nets, even if we are just talking about a bowl! I have also been reminded that the brain and body can’t work properly without fuel- so fuel it.
Thank you D for putting up with me this week. As always, you’ve been a great friend.