America here we come!!

With less than 4 hours before we leave for America I can hardly believe we’ve made it this far…. Never in the three years of us planning and cancelling this trip did I ever think we’d ever get this close to flying. Our holiday we dreamed of – Disney Orlando Florida.

From mums many cancer ops/ procedures, Natalie’s spinal surgery, my Grandads heart attack and to top it all off my eating disorder, it has been a tough few years for everyone. We’ve faced a lot together and that’s not been easy, many tears have been shed, hands held and fingers crossed…. we’ve laughed, cried, screamed and been left feeling empty.!

This holiday has been our motive, the light at the end, the goal or maybe even the beginning of better times? 

It’s finally here. 

I haven’t let myself feel the reality that yes THIS IS HAPPENING, I suppose I’ve blocked it out filling my time with anything but planning. I’ve avoided packing until made to and had minimal input in deciding how to spend our days.

I’m desperately trying to remain positive but still fear its going to be ripped from our grip… 

But my family are my anchor in rough waters – and maybe we weren’t supposed to have it easy. Maybe it was this way because we’re some of the rare few who can handle these tough times and still carry on regardless. Maybe rock bottom will be the foundations in which we rebuild our life. 

Maybe this will be the holiday of a lifetime…
AMERICA HERE WE COME!
 

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I’m Struggling, I’m Human.

It’s only human to have bad times. 

This last week for me has been exactly that. No, I’m not going to write a post pretending everything’s just ‘fine’ because that would be giving a glossed picture of recovery.
See, the truth is the aim of being positive is still just a relative concept. Even those with years of practise can not always determine unexpected fluctuations… 

Shaky moments are perfectly normal! 

People who seem to have it altogether still have rough patches. With good intentions effected by fate it leaves us no choice but to get on the train at the next station.

For me reminding myself of something I read whilst inpatient really helps me to put things into perspective and give me the courage to carry on. With the passage striking me on a personal level I really wanted to share it with you all….

“Picture yourself when you were five years old. In fact dig out a photo of little you at that time and tape it to your mirror. How would you treat her, love her, feed her? How would you nurture her if you where the mother of little you? I bet you would protect her fiercly whilst giving her space to spread her itty bitty wings. She’d get naps, healthy food, imagination time, and adventures into the wild. If playground bullies hurt her feelings, you’d hug her tears away and give her perspective. When tantrums and meltdownss turned her into a poltergeist you’d demmand a loving time out in the naughty chair. From this day forward I want you to extend that same compassion to your adult self.”

I do not intend on sharing how it related to me but would l love to know if it impacted you in anyway… please let me know! Now, have the best week possible and keep moving forward.

Dear Anorexia,

Dear Anorexia,
You came into my life and stole my happiness.

I guess you had been hiding in the shadows for a while, following me around, watching my every move. You crept up on me slowly stepping closer only when I was most vulnerable. I was convinced you where a friend.

Oh how I was wrong.

At first I noticed you at school sat at the back of the classroom. You noted every flaw. Natalies spinal surgery; you whispered advice. Mums cancer; you stood by my side. Grandads heart attack you took my hand. Everywhere I turned you where there always in the back of my mind.

Your voice grew louder as I grew older. You started commanding me to do things. STARVE, EXERCISE, PURGE. I followed your commands believing you would help. Every time I listened you gave me a sense of control. But then you snatched in from me and I realised I never had it all along. I became weaker as you grew stronger.

You stole those closes from me pushing them into the shadows. You took over my soul and stole my laughter. Family and friends became an inconvenience to you as I sat back helplessly frightened of your power. You starved my hope and purged my dreams.

Nothing was left.

The day came when I was constantly cold and plagued with fatigue. My hair began falling at my feet, as death blackened my sunken eyes. I was screaming for help but you never let them hear. You left them hurt, raw and crying at my hospital bed.

I was never good enough for you.

But now I’m stronger and things are different. You made me miss out on so much so now I’m fighting back. One day at a time I will fight your lies, releasing your grip. See, you have lied to me and I will never forgive or surrender to you.

From now on I am stronger.

No matter how many times I fall down, I will always pick myself up because I am no longer living a life with you. With living a synonym for barely existing in a world suffocated by the war you created, I am regaining my strength and continuing the battle.

I WILL live my life. I WILL follow my dreams and no matter what is thrown at me I WILL beat you.
It might take until my dying breath but this is a promise – you will never win…

Doubt kills more dreams than Failure ever will!

Self doubt.

For some its having aspirations they believe are impossible, tests they are certain they have already failed or a worry that they have done or said something wrong. It can be frustrating and appear at the most inconvenient times but we have no way  of stopping what we think right?

Well kinda…. yes we get these thoughts without asking for them but we can also re-condition them into something positive.

But how? You may ask….well it’s possible and I will tell you how, not easy, but definitely within your potential if you take these steps…

  • Recognise your self-doubt…

The first step sounds ridiculous and I always thought it was too when I was first told. But only now do I realise we do not always notice when we are doubting ourselves because we honestly believe it! So instead question yourself this, would you say these things to someone else? Would it be hurtful? Well if you realise that what you would be saying would be criticising, belittling and putting them down then you need to ask yourself why would you treat yourself this way if you wouldn’t hurt others like this?

  • Stop comparing yourself to others

Firstly I would like to point something out, when we compare ourselves it cannot possibly be a true reflection. This is because we are immediately picking apart all our faults and the other persons best qualities so the comparison creates low self-esteem against ‘yourself’.

Secondly would you compare a grey hound to a bull-dog?… of course you wouldn’t because they are so unique it is not possible. Well this is the same with humans, we too come in all shapes, sizes, races, religions, genders etc.. and most importantly we have individual personalities with no two people exactly the same!!  

  • Surround yourself with positive people

Yes, negative people can have some influence on you too and just because the things they might mention might not necessarily be accurate, it can still have a personal impact.

Ask yourself whether this person makes you feel upset, exhausted or in any way demoralised. If the answer is yes then in the best way possible confront the issue or distance yourself from it.

  • Break it down

Make small and achievable goals that will help you achieve the ultimate. I have always found writing lists helps me and sometimes just writing it down can make the work load, jobs or things to do more manageable. Then once you start working your way through the smaller goals it is easy to see things progressing and finally coming together. The list doesn’t have to take long and as long as it breaks things down enough, so it makes sense to you, it is perfect.

  • Believe it is possible

Yes this old saying, but it’s true, if you believe in yourself anything is possible…

”A bird sitting on a tree is never afraid of a branch breaking, because its trust is not on the branch but on its very own wings!”

Yes I confess…. I am also a self doubter who will be convinced I have failed before I have even taken the test, who believes that what I do is never good enough and someone who has to ask others for reassurance that everything is OK. But I too have used these steps to help me in the past.

I took my practical driving test yesterday and did not take these steps into consideration. I have indeed now learnt a valuable lesson and will quickly get back on track….

Before I arrived at the test centre i had already told my parents and instructor that I would fail…some would say this was for effect but to me i believed it. Yes I admit before I continue that I am that frustrating person who has come out of a GCSE physics exam crying convinced ‘I have failed’ only to go and get 98% correct. Annoying yes, and many believe I must be quietly confident…..but hell NO I think the complete opposite!

I started the driving test poorly letting nerves get the better of me, I stuttered when asked questions about the car, did the right demonstration of checking brakes whilst explaining something completely different and mind blanked whilst trying to drive off with the hand break up. Not the best start from me and within the first few seconds ‘I new I had failed’ and was close to just getting out. 

Anyway I carried on regardless giving the test my best shot.

When returning to the test centre I gave my driving instructor the ‘I’ve messed up big time’ glance through the window as she wandered over to find out my feedback and results….By this point I had destroyed myself mentally before I had any evidence of failing and suffered as a consequence and after all the build up I found out I PASSED!

When I first found this out I didn’t believe it and for a second thought it was a joke. But it wasnt! After all the stress and pressure I put myself under, iI asked myself  “was not worth it?”. My self-doubt got me nowhere, all it did was make the experience a lot less enjoyable.

I hope from this experience both you and I realise that we are more capable than we believe and yes we all mess up from time to time, get things wrong but self-doubt only worsens the situation. I learnt something valuable from my experience today and will now focus on preventing a similar situation to ever occur again.

Remember this:

“Although things don’t always follow the perfect route they can still reach the same destination… and from this day forward you and I should both remind ourselves not to let self-doubt jeopardise our capabilities‘’

Take care you beautiful people and don’t forget to Embrace Authenticity xx