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This Will Be The Best Christmas Yet [Dec. 22nd, 2009|02:08 pm]
Catherine B
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Last year was a blur, the year before that I was a stick insect inpatient paralysed by fear and putting on a brave face, the few years before that were also blurry, fuzzy memories as my brain was not focussing on presents, enjoyment, family and friends, instead it was all wasted on finding ways to eat as little as possible on the one day that it should be acceptable to do the complete opposite.

The sad thing is that I love Christmas - the snow makes me giddy and staying up late on Christmas eve, hiding all the tangerines so that Father Christmas has stocking problems, going to church and singing all the carols; everything - I love it all and always have. Eating Disorders cast a shadow over everything, and Christmas is probably the most feared time of year for all sufferers, whether ill or in recovery. The ill try their best (and fail) to hide their habits and fears, whilst the recovering build a snowball of anxiety around trying to prove that they can get through, making it perfect for eveyone else around them and feel desperately pressured to not let everyone down as they have in years gone by.
 
I remember mum's eyes well up as I spent so many Christmasses skipping breakfast and becoming irritable and completely annoying around other meals, chocolates et al. One time my Christmas dinner consisted of a Quorn fillet (most of which was hidden in a napkin) and a few bits of veg, which I then walked off alone. Another year I remember trying to prove myself by eating an almost decent portion - honestly trying my best, no ulterior motive - but then immediately fled the house so I could be sick in a field. Depressing is it not? To be opening presents and not caring what they are or who they're from because you're so anxious about a bloody meal; to hate being in the house because it's full of chocolates and all you want to do is binge on every single box; to hate yourself for ruining everyone elses day; to see that look in their eyes.
 
I don't want pity, that's not why I am saying this. What I want to say is that past Christmasses have seemed shiny and happy on the surface, but where there is anorexia or bulimia, there is trouble - looking back I can truly see how far I have come.

This year, whilst everybody else seems to be stressing their little heads off over a bit of snow (hate Englad) and the (yaaaawn) credit crunch, I seem to have developed my own approach to Christmas - for the first time, a positive one. You can't take money with you when you're gone, snow happens, no matter how many times you check the forecast it aint gonna change (directed towards anybody like my dad), stress and anxiety only make everything all the more worrying and time can only be enjoyed if you are relaxed and let things be - so let it be. I have worked unbelievably hard to get to this point, so I am damn well going to for once take my own advice and make this my best Christmas yet - for my boyfriend, for my family, for my friends, and (here's something I NEVER thought I would EVER be able to say) for myself. There, I said it! Everybody deserves to be happy at this time of year. Unfortunately some cannot, but I have everything else in place - a loving family, a warm home, gifts under the tree, church, friendship, love... I feel like this is my turn, my chance - and I am going to give it my all.

Eesh, I almost made myself cry there - I'll leave you with this...

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Comments:
From: (Anonymous)
2009-12-22 04:57 pm (UTC)

You go girl!

It's fab to hear you feeling so strong and positive. I hope I can get back to enjoying Christmas as much as I used to. Like you I love Christmas, everything about it, but it has been overshadowed the last 5 years. Have a lovely Christmas :-) You've inspired me to continue to fight on and get my love of the festive season back as well. xx
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[User Picture]From: catherineib
2009-12-24 02:00 pm (UTC)

Re: You go girl!

It warms my heart when anyone tells me that I have inspired them, honestly that means more than anything. I'm having a great time so far and I hope you are, and do, too! x
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From: (Anonymous)
2009-12-22 09:49 pm (UTC)

Hope for All!!

I read your very moving and brave log/journal & your words are inspiring. Eating disorders come in many forms & one can lead on to another or co-exsist as you highlighted. They may also manifest in other types of self- abuse but ALL are equally debilitating.
I wish you the Christmas you desire and reap the rewards of all your hard work!!
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[User Picture]From: catherineib
2009-12-24 02:00 pm (UTC)

Re: Hope for All!!

Thank you so much - it means a lot :) x
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