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.:)

Sunday, 7 June 2015

My Meal Plan Mission...Part 3

And so, since that day when I was discharged from the hospital, things slowly but surely began to slide downhill in terms of sticking to my meal plan. being no longer under the watchful gaze of the ward nurses, and relatively free to do as I pleased in terms of food choices, portions and so forth, my eating disorder was also given free rein to take advantage of me once more. And despite my very best intentions, that sly, soft little Voice that I know all to well did begin to creep back in, twisting my thoughts, crushing down my goals, and, in turn, governing my mind and my actions.

And so, it started again...Almost every day, it insisted that I did something, anything which meant I was eating less than what I knew that I should be eating. My Meal Plan - that little sheet of paper which I used to follow so carefully, so determinedly every day, had become less of a guide and more of a vague something which I had pushed to the very back of my mind, refusing to openly acknowledge. The guilt screamed at me, every time I cheated or skipped something. But the screams of my eating disorder were there, too, of course, loud, domineering, overpowering. And it usually, more often than not, was the winner of the shouting match that took place in my head, between it, and the real me.

But last Monday, as I described in my previous post, I came to the realisation that this couldn't go on. Because, even though it wasn't as if I had completely and utterly slid backwards in my recovery and had resorted to frequent and extreme restricting or anything - I knew, without one shadow of a doubt, that all those little things i did every day were enabling my eating disorder to become ever stronger; and that, if I did not find it within me to take control once more, then everything, after all my hard work, would fall apart just as quickly and as easily as it did so before. That one missed snack could easily evolve into a missed snack every day, morning and afternoon. Choosing to have just the cereal at breakfast time, or just the sandwich at lunch without the yoghurt, could all too easily escalate towards choosing not to have anything at all, just like I used to. And I know now that it is so, so important to NOT let this happen...for the sake of my body, if not for myself.

My Meal Plan and my Mission to make myself Stronger than ED

After a good, long think about how I am going to push myself and make myself stronger and less vulnerable against by eating disorder, I decided that I am going to try the following approaches...

  • Easing myself back into it, slowly but surely. As mentioned before this past week I have been focusing on getting back into the routine of eating a snack in the afternoon with my hot chocolate. And yes, I'm pleased to say that it IS going well, so far! I've managed to eat al my afternoon snacks this weekend, which I feel is good progress made. I think next I might try and tackle toast at breakfast next.
  • And you will also be relieved to know, I have been putting my super cute food diary to good use!:) Every few days I write down what I am going to have for the following few meals and snacks thereafter and tick them off once I have had them...and a big red x goes beside the things I have missed out on. i think it helps to get someone you trust in on this..and let them look at your food diary for you every so often...yep, give it to them and let them actually read it. I used to do this with Mam all the time and it helped me alot.
  • I have been consciously eating my meals and snacks whenever there are other people around. It makes things alot harder for ED then...and when you are having something and others are too, it always makes food alot more enjoyable I think.:)
  • Another thing that I have been using of late, which actually has been quite a big motivating factor for me, is the knowledge that if I choose to eat well not and consume the correct recovery amount, my metabolism will recover and when I reach my target weight I will be able to eat plenty without gaining weight.This might sound funny but at the beginning I was really enjoying eating all the stuff on the meal plan and it wasn't causing me any stress. If I could get back into the habit of that, that would be great. I enjoy eating little and often, and am perfectly contented with eating plenty of snacks and three nice meals a day...and that's exactly what I want to do, but, of late, my ED has just made me too afraid of going with what I want to do.
  • I went shopping with Mam on Friday and got myself lots of yummy foods for me to have for snacks and meals, and also ingredients so that I could make some new tasty treats. I am a firm believer in that in recovery you should eat what you enjoy as it just makes it so much easier. (Not forgetting the fear foods which you genuinely deep down DO like!!!)
  • My friend put a really funny little picture on the wall of the eating disorder ward at the hospital. I dont know if you might have heard of Mr Bean...? Anyway, basically the picture features Mr Bean standing on a beach in the surf with his trousers rolled up to his knees. He's got his hands on his hips and his eyes closed, and his face is an epitome of peaceful, carefree tranquillity. The slogan across the picture reads (and again, please excuse the language here :p : "Life is so short, just do the f*** what makes you happy". I cant honestly explain exactly why...but I just find this simply brilliant. And it sums up everything perfectly. Life is too short. Why do we waste so much time and energy, worrying about how we should eat, what we should look like? instead of striving for perfection and actively seeking to change our bodies or the way we look, should we not focus on doing the things that make us feel happy, spending time with those who make us happy, and working towards a more positive, healthy mindset in which we can accept and love ourselves for the way we are? <3 xxx

And yesterday, Lizzy made me one of these before I went to chocolate topped with chopped Cadbury Dairy Milk and halved marshmallows...heaven in a mug!!! <3 xxx


  1. You are already showing that you are stronger than Ed Emmy, Well done! Keep smiling and fighting. You are doing so well <3

    1. <3 thanks so much hun! I really appreciate your support <3 it makes such a massive difference knowing I have such caring friends behind me! xxx

  2. Well done for fighting back at your Eating Disorder! Stay strong and keep going! xo

    1. <3 thank you so much Liberty <3 every little comment really means so much to me, thank you so so much, I hope you are having a lovely day <3 xxx

  3. Em I'm so proud of you hun :D you're getting back on track and I know you can keep going. All of these tips are great advice :)


    1. <3 aww thanks hun <3 <3 <3 Im really really proud of you hun and the progress you have made too!! All my love hun take care and see you very soon!! <3 xxxxx

  4. I'm just bursting with pride for you my love! Reading this post made me so happy to know that you're determined to get back on track and you're actively doing things to get back to where you want to be. You can do it, your strength is inspirational. How long ago were you in hospital? How long were you in for? It is always difficult to acclimatise back to real life after coming home out of the ward. You will get there, I know you will because your strength tells me that you will! Keep it up you amazing little superstar! Xxx

  5. Hello dear <3
    Aww hun you are so sweet and your support and encouragement really makes me smile <3 I was in hospital hun from the 19th of January this year until the 23rd of March, and I have been a day patient ever since. And you are SO right. I was absolutely terrified when I left, it was like the hospital had become my world. But I faced the anxiety and it didn't kill me, of course. I coped fine and I'm still here now and I can safely say I NEVER want to go back into hospital ever again!!

    thank you so so much hun <3 you are keeping me going with all your help and support, you are such a superstar too, keep fighting for me hun! <3 xxx

    1. Did you find it helpful to be in hospital? What sort of treatment did you get there? How did you end up in the hospital? It's great that you can still be a day patient. I was recently in hospital for a similar time from early March to May but I don't get the opportunity to be a day patient, although I wish I could be, because, like you say, the hospital becomes your world and anything else is terrifying. I'm so glad that you feel the way you do about not wanting to go back into hospital, I think it means you're on the right track!

      I really hope I do help and support you, please know that I'm here for you if you need any help or support my lovely! Always fighting onwards together <3 xxx

    2. It was very, very hard hun, but looking back now I admit, it was necessary. I would never have been able to gain the weight that was required at home, or overcome my fear of not exercising for 2 hours every day. And through my hospital journey I met some incredible, wonderful people , many of which havebecome true friends to me. <3 And I suppose it was in there which I got the support I needed, as in there, the nurses, and my friends all understood exactly what every patient was going through.

      If you look in the tab "this is my story" on the top of the page hun I think there is more about what happened before I went into hospital. X If you would like me to write more about this though hun will you let me know? <3

      How are you doing now hun? Are you stil struggling as much as you were before? <3 I'd do anything to help you and please don't ever hesitate to get in touch with me hun! We will keep on fighting this horrible illness together <3 you are a star hun please don't ever forget that! xxx

    3. Hard but necessary is how I would describe all but one of my hospital admissions too. I'm glad that you met some incredible people on your journey, I'm sure they made it more bearable for you. We all need friends close by us when we go through times of adversity.

      I'll go and have a look at that tab now after leaving this reply!

      I'm up and down, but more down than up which is frustrating. I just want to be where I was three or four months ago in terms of my mind, things were going ridiculously well. It just seems to be the complete opposite now.

      Thank you for being so kind and lovely to me, it really means the world to read your beautiful words. Always fighting onwards together. Sending you loads of love xxx

    4. :'( if there is ANYTHING i can do to help you hun, please let me know. i wonder what happened to make things so much more diffiult in the space of a few months. did something trigger you hun, did things become stressful? I know sometimes though there might not be any simple explnation or justification for when things become bad.

      Just try really hard hun to think of all the positives of recovery, what you are missing out on by staying sick, tje damamge it is doing to your body.and then use that as motivation. Try and take things one step at a time like I did, make goals for every day. Its best to do things slowly but surely i think.

      All my love hun <3 take care dear <3 xxxx

    5. Thank you so much lovely!

      What happened was I went into hospital and had to gain a significant amount of weight, but I haven't had any therapy to enable me to cope with the weight gain, so it has spiralled me into a depression. I hope I've made sense! Anorexia doesn't always make sense.

      You give such good advice, thank you so much <3 You're right, I'm missing out on so much being stuck here. One step at a time is the best way.


    6. <3 no hun, bbelieve me, I know EXACTLY where you are coming from :( I was made to gain weight in hospital too, but I found the therapy I received there unhelpful. I found there was too much focus on the physical recovery in the hospital...they didn't help us so much with the mental side of things which as we all know, is just as important. :(

      Hope you had a lovely day hun <3 thank you so so much for all of your lovely sweet coments <3 xxxxx