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.:)

Friday, 13 November 2015

Step 1...STICK to the Meal Plan!! :o

And so, following my post from yesterday, I thought I'd take each one of the steps of my Plan of Action individually and talk about them a little more in separate posts. So let's begin with Making and Sticking to the Meal Plan. Which I know is so important for me right now...but also, very hard. But I know that I CAN do it. And that I AM stronger than I might think...

Of course, there are a few obstacles though that I have come across here. Firstly...I don't know, precisely, just what my "ideal" meal plan for me should look like.

Of course, there was what I was on in the hospital...but if I was very honest, the thought of going straight back onto that is very daunting to me right now. Firstly, because even though I am still not quite at the healthy bmi range (working on 19 or 20, I suppose?) I am not severely underweight, as I was when I went into hospital.

I think what I am going to have to do is try and follow this meal plan which I have devised for myself below, and see how I get on with it. By following this meal plan I hope to achieve the following goals.

  1. To get into  a balanced and regular eating pattern once again, with my three meals and three snacks.
  2. To incorporate all of the food groups into my diet so that my body is getting all the essential nutrients that it needs.
  3. To break the silly ED rules constructed by the Voice; particularly over the past couple of months; rules which prevented me from eating certain foods, eating over a preicese or tiny amount of a certain food etc. (more on this in a later post!! ) 
  4. And the hardest part, but I know that it is so important: reach and maintain healthy weight range for my height.
  5. By eating more my concentration, energy levels and anxiety shoudl all improve drastically. 

And if it becomes apparent that these goals are not being reached with my new meal plan, then I will just have to adjust accordingly and make a few changes where necessary.

Another thing that I have found tricky in the past and which I still do now is worrying about sugar. Now, as you know I am pretty much the Queen of Hot Choc: no joke, I drink three mugs worth of this divine concoction every day - made with Supermilk of course ( a special type of milk fortified with extra calcium and vitamins for my brittle bones!!) and then of course, I always have my banana and custard in the evening, with over a bars worth of some sort of lovely chocolate on top...(currently Im working my way through a ginormous bar of Milka Oreo that daddy dearest brought me back from lisbon. milka + Oreo...ahhhhh now that IS a match made in heaven....<3
anyway, to return to my point. So I suppose, the fact that I do eat alot of chocolate and hot choc, this was taken as an "excuse" by ed, for me to not eat my snacks and certain other foods because of thei sugar content.
But I sat and had a thought about this, and now I see that it is easily an obstacle that I can ovecome. After all, I dont really drink fizzt drinks or alcohol (purely because they just don't bother me: i much prefer drinking water ) and i also dont really drink juice, or eat candies or jam or sugary cereals.
Also, I might try and have, 80% of the time, the less sugary sort of snacks like the bread and the nuts and the scones, but I know that there is absolutely NOTHING stopping me from having a chocolate cookie with my hot choc if thats what i fancy, or a crunchy Nature Valley bar if im in a hurry and want a quick sweet fix on the go. That's completely normal; its not as if its going to do me any harm!!!

So anyway, here is my current meal plan, as a starting point. :)

Breakfast 8.00 1 slice wholemeal/wholegrain/multigrain/seeded toast and peanut butter (about 1 tbsp) + bowl of cereal

Mid morning snack 10.00 - 12.30 Hot choc or A large snack (porridge/readybrek/bagel + peanut butter/toast + peanut butter/bowl of cereal/miller rice/rice pudding etc.).

Lunch 1.30 - 2.30

  • 1 brown submarine roll/1 toasted white submarine roll/1 soft crusty roll/1 mini baguette/wholemeal bread/wholemeal toast/wholemeal bap/soda bread/baked potatoe with
  • Protein filling: Ham/Turkey/Chicken/Tuna/Pink salmon/Cheddar/Soft boiled egg/Hardboiled egg/poached egg/Mozzarella/Baked beans/some kind of soup with…
  • A little salad: tomato/beetroot/spinach etc.
  • Portion of fruit (apple or banana usually.:)

afternoon snack 16,45 - 18.15
hot choc + snack (biscuits/salted cashews/salted peanuts/scone/teacake/hot cross bun/homemade granola/soda, rye or spelt bread + peanut butter/half bagel + peanut butter/toast + peanut butter/muesli or granola bar/belvitas/yoghurt/crackers and peanut butter etc.)

dinner 19.30-20.15 Varies depending on what I'm cooking ;)
Pudding 21.00 Oh yes, the inevitable banana, lashings of custard, and a ridiculous amount of choc, all melted on top.... <3

bedtime snack 22.00-23.00 Hot choc before bed <3

So this is what I am going to START with at first. but I think as my body gets used to this I might add in a snack with the hot choc in the morning; and then, depending on how Im getting on, I can always make a few more tweaks (an early morning snack at 7, an extra piece of toast, bigger snacks with the hot choc, etc.)

So anyway...wish me luck everyone <3 thank you so, so much for your support over the past few days...for your beautiful comments and sweet words, the kind thoughts and caring advice. I can't express how much this means to me, how much YOU mean to me. <3
Thank you, thank you, thank you...for believing in me. It's because of you I am sitting here writing this today. You helped me so much to pick up the pieces and scramble out of the dark hole, and step forwards once again, with a smile on my face and a new brightness in my eyes.

And here is one of my ED victories today!! Perhaps I should do this every day if I have time...write out a little goal that I reached, or an ED rule that I smashed, every day? Oh and as always if you have any other comments or suggestions please let me know <3

ED victories today ;) I have three in mind now which I will share with you:
Crappy pic haha, but anyway: heres me eating snack today - biccies and hot choc!!! :D yummmm

  1. I ate my toast and cereal at breakfast, despite the fact it was 6.00 and I didnt have much of an appetite 
  2. I asked Mam to make my roll at lunch, as I find this is much easier for me and Mam always put in a good amount of filling. It was so yummy and I really, really  enjoyed it <3
  3. And with my hot choc this afternoon, I had some yummy Belvitas...perfecttt for dunking and this is the first time in a while Ive had hot choc and biccies (that list of divine combinations would surely include biccies and hot choc too, wouldn't you agree... ;) ) and again, I really enjoyed it <3

And yes, Im not going to lie. the ED voice was there, screaming away...but this time, it was me, not the Voice, who triumphed. One little battle won...and I know that it will be the first of many. Remember have to take everything, one step at a time. And then all those little steps will add up, add up till you suddenly realise that you have made it: you've made it to the top of the mountain...
 So together, let's take those little steps... <3 xxx


  1. Excellent start Em. Its nearly like mine. Although I need to reconstruct mine a.bit. you have inspired me to keep pushing forward as my doctor has my next target. I'm so proud of you.. I know how challenging it can be but you're on your way. Yeah!!! Xx

    1. thanks a MILLION dear! Oh I am so proud of you too - well done !! We can do this together and please know I am always here for you Sonya dear - let's beat this thing together. All my love <3 xxx

  2. (I apologize if this is posted twice. I tried to post it on my phone and it didn't seem to work)

    Emily! I just noticed that you are blogging again!

    Firstly, let me say that you should be INCREDIBLY PROUD of yourself. It would be so easy to keep slipping down, and it takes great strength of character and insight to recognize that you are falling back and to pick yourself back up. You're so strong. I know you can't see that for yourself yet, but you are.

    Remember, it's not the number of times you fall that matters. It's the number of times you get back up. And you ARE getting back up. You continue to amaze me with how hard you are fighting. I cannot imagine how difficult this must be for you. I am truly in awe.

    Remember too that recovery isn't going to be perfect (I know most of us are perfectionists and have a hard time wrapping our heads around this one!). There are going to be slip-ups, it's inevitable. What's important is that you don't let those slip-ups change your overall trajectory. Be kind to yourself.

    I'm going to write you an e-mail with more detail (if that's ok), but I've started adding in some family-based therapy and it's been incredibly helpful. I really think it might help you too, so I'll send some ideas of things that have helped me!

    Keep fighting Emily. This is a long battle. But remember you are not alone. You do not have to fight this by yourself. You are surrounded by family, friends and readers who love you and who are right beside you in the arena, fighting this battle with you.

    Beautiful girl, you can do hard things.

    -N xx

    1. <3 hey hun!! It's so SO good to hear from you and your comment honeslty nearly made me cry! Thank you so, so much dear I really can't express how much that means <3 And please, email away - I am so sorry hun as I realise I never answered your last one - I can't apologise enough!! I will email you back asap hun but always remember you can send me stuff whenever!

      Once again thank you so, so much for your beautiful, sweet comment and for always being there for me hun, you are such a star, thank you hun, truly <3

      all my love, emmy <3 xxx

  3. You will make it, I am so sure! You help your followers so much and your posts help me to keep on fighting and to resist the voice in my head. Thanks so much for all your support.
    Kindest Maria

    1. <3 anytime hun, I am always here for you and I am so glad that I can help you some way. all my love dear <3 xxx

  4. Hi Emmy gorgeous. I think this is a fantastic start. And its so good to hear you speaking so confidently about sticking to your meal plan. Its so good that you realise the importance of doing this, as in my eyes it really does mean the difference between recovering or not. Please, give it everything you have got Emmy. I believe in you 100% and i know that you can do it, as long as you believe you can :) xxx

    1. <3 oh hun <3 your comment realy made my day hun, thank you so, so much, this means the world to me :* <3 and you are so right, I completely agree with you. recovery means going against that voice in every single way, learning to nourish your body without guilt. And it is very, very hard: there's no way that voice is going to like following the meal plan at all. But that's why I know I need to be strong. I really want to do this hun, I know that I need to and I feel so determined to beat this monster once and for all. i can't express just how much hun your support means to me. Thank you so, so much hun <3 all my love <3 xxx