At first glance it might seem that I am just a happy, normal girl who loves to bake and walk her dog. However, I have suffered with an eating disorder since I was 13. It was only in May 2014 when I realised that this Voice in my head was slowly but surely trying to kill me. And so began the long, hard, and painful journey which is recovery...

I want My Cocoa Stained Apron to be a special place...a place for reflection, memories, shared stories...and of course a little bit of cocoa-staining ;) Recovery might be the hardest thing you ever choose to do in this life. But it is also the bravest and best decision you will ever make.:)

Thursday, 16 April 2015

My treatment as an Inpatient...and a little Advice :) x

I spent nine weeks as an inpatient in a mental services hospital in Dublin. It goes without saying that it was one of the most difficult and challenging periods of my life, but I know, without one shadow of a doubt, that it was also an imperative and crucially fundamental step in the progress of my recovery, and a necessary one. I don't think I would have got any further up that mountain if I hadn't forced myself into the environment of a hospital.

Anyway, I thought I would write a little post about my experience as an inpatient before I go on to tell you more about my life as a day patient, as well as give you a few pieces of advice which I took from what I learnt there myself.

My treatment in hospital helped me in numerous ways. Firstly, it helped me to gain the weight which I was too afraid of putting on by myself. Yes, I had managed to gain weight alone at home, but it was  a massive effort which both drained and frightened me enormously while doing so. Also, my time as an inpatient forced to face up to many of my fear foods. I was prevented from doing any exercise. At first, the anxiety brought up by this sedentary situation was more than just a little overwhelming. It was so, so hard and I had lost count of the amount of times I told myself I can't do this. But then...then it became a little easier. A little, mind. It doesn't just disappear overnight. But I kept on telling myself that this wasn't forever and that, if I stayed strong, it wouldn't be long until I would be bak on the bog with my Benny in the summer sunshine, feeling the wind in my hair and the sun on my face and enjoying the feeling of movement in a way which was not obsessive or compulsive. And so I can safely say my hospital stay really did help me overcome my fear of resting and not exercising all the time.

My inpatient treatment also served to help me, in a numberof other different aspects of recovery which I know I could never have done at home. For example..I never knew that I was significantly deficient of many of the vital B Vitamins...and of course, the discovery of my osteoporosis was something I would never have discovered by myself at home, until it might have been too late, of course. 

I learnt alot there, on that brightly coloured, warm ward with the charming pictures on the walls, the squeaky clean floors and the flowery, thick curtains. I left the hospital on the twenty third of March 2015 as a maturer, stronger, wiser young woman. And from what I learnt I feel like now I have some advice to offer to you, regardless of whether you are an inpateitn or not, or what stage of recovery you are at. First bit of advice…when it comes to recovery, you have to focus on yourself. I know you might have heard this before but I’m going to say it again because honestly, it is so, so true. One of the first things I struggled with when I came to the hospital was comparing myself with the other patients there. What I ate, portion sizes, everything…it was very hard. If most of the other patients were having the fish and boiled potatoes for dinner, then I myself felt pressurised to do the same, instead of going for what I really fancied, the vegetarian option which was a cheese and tomato pizza with sweetcorn and a dressed salad on the side…like a sheep I felt compelled to follow everyone else. But then after a while I realised what I was doing was silly and wrong and wasn’t really getting me anywhere. Recovery from an eating disorder involves listening to your ody and ignoring that sneering little Voice in your head. It involves eating what you fancy, what your body is craving at that particular time. I think this is a very important thing to take on board in recovery, regardless of what stage of recovery you are at and whether you are recovering by yourself, in an inpatient setting or elsewhere.

Also…make a list of the things that you enjoy or which you find relaxing. Whenever the intrusive thoughts come in this list will be invaluable to you. So when you feel the anxiety bbegin to creep in, get stuck into doing something AT ONCE. For me this was always doing some work on my big personal collage. My friend had brought in a load of magazines and I could spend literally hours just going through them, cutting words, pictures, images, you name it – out and then sticking them onto my collage.

journaling is always quite helpful too I always found. Get those thoughts out on paper. It doesn’t have to be coherent or make any sort of sense. Maybe it’s just scribbles, maybe a long list of angry words. But the important thing is to get those concerns, those anxieties, those desperate, racing  thoughts out of you head and onto paper.

And remember...the nurses and doctors are there to HELP you, in every single way they possibly can. Therefore, it is so, so important not to bottle up and keep your true feelings and fears hidden and under cover. It's absolutelyt crucial that you open up to them. tryust is an important part of the recovery process, too. You need to start learning to trust others, while they need to begin to start to trust you. 

I plan on writing more about this stage of my recovery in future posts, as there is an awful lot to be said about it I suppose and I feel like I gained alot of insight from my experiences in the hospital which I feel compelled to share with the world. <3 xxx


  1. Wow hun *_* such an emotional post :) it really touched my heart, I can honestly say this ;) I still can learn so much from you, because you have such a huuuuge knowledge and there are still so many things I don´t know about recovery ;) So I am so thankful for your support and you are such a lovely special friend to me;) I love u so much and beeeeeeelieve that we will make it both out of this miserable illness and Miss Mager right? =) hahaaaaaa and as we both know best this works with Nutella and hot chocolate right? =) Love uuuuuuu again xxxxxxxxxx

    1. Awww huni you always leave such special comments <3 thanks so so much hun and I got your beautiful email hun so thank you so much for that too <3 Heehee yes hun it's our secret key to success: Nutella + hot choc + support from dear friends = FREEDOM from Miss Mager <3 Love you so much huni :* xxxxx

    2. Oh huuuunni <3 there is nothing to thank me for, it is you who writes such great posts on your blog ;) *_* so I have to thank you for all of your knowledge :)
      Aaaaw *_* can´t actually wait for your lovely reply on it :)
      OMG yeees :D an absolutely brilliant match hun ;) this is our secret recipe!!! ;) as we both are bakers and fight against her :) OMG perfect :) hahaaa Love u so much and I love ur brilliant ideas ;) you go giiiiirl :D <3 <3

  2. Awesome advice!! I love reading about your progress!!♡♡♡

    1. <3 Thank you so much hun <3 I am glad youthought it was helpful advice huni I didn't think I was that good at writing those sort of posts!!! xxxxx <3