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, 22 September 2017

The girl who would not bleed

They won't hurt me again. I won't ever, ever let them break down my walls. I'll be guarded and careful and keep my heart wrapped up tight in swaths of stifling cloth. I typed the words furiously, fingers rapping against the keyboard, tears streaking down my face to land in messy plops upon the surface of my laptop.

I will not bleed. I won't let them. From now on it's me and noone else.

No sooner had I written the words though I knew that I did not mean them. Because truth is I'm a girl who is naturally open and honest and warm. A girl who loves intensely and deeply and craves to be loved in return. A girl who realises that she needs to let others in, needs those others to help her carry her forwards, to reassure her that she can bare that heavy, heavy cross.

And it's not them who make me bleed, anyway. Rather, it's me. I'm the one who is making myself so hurt and torn inside. It's me after all who controls my response to events; who chooses how to react to that comment, who makes a decision to take those words right to the heart.

It's me who has the power to say I will not bleed. I won't let myself, not them. And Ed. Always Ed.

For he's the one who scored gashes across my heart, broke it so deftly with his cruel, nimble fingers. And so many times. So many times that I have lost count.

But now I say. No more, Ed.

I am the girl who will not bleed.

Yet even as I write those words again I cannot help but grimace at the irony set deep within them. Of course, that's just what I am too, literally speaking. Yes. The same girl who has been told on numerous occasions that she looks "healthy" and well, and yet, the same girl who has still not had one single period. She literally will not bleed. Is it wrong of me to wish that the world would just keep its comments to itself?

But no good saying all this and writing it. No good just saying that oh, yes, I will be strong and no longer let ED cut me open. I now need to take concrete actions in my life; actions which will bring about the physical and psychological changes that together constitute what I see as true recovery.

And even as my heart lies in bloody, shattered pieces, pulsing upon the floor, I still hung on to my tattered shreds of hope.

That's what'll keep me going and which will drive me on. On and on as the thunderclouds broil thick and heavy, and the rain slashes down upon my face.

I will get through this. I'm stronger now than I ever was before.

And so, I am going to conclude this post with some real, concrete actions, to move forwards.

Because action is power. And hope, and that refusal to give up, could well be my greatest ever strength.

  • Get into the habit of checking my weight once a week again. No more, no less.
  • Learn how to deal with the much dreaded,  you look well.                                                        Ah, the agony of  that so simple little comment; three short words in a single sentence, a sentence which has the same devastating power as a massive avalanche would crashing down upon my head. It was something, those days when I was very underweight, that I wasn't of course at any point faced with, at all. Back then it was you need to gain weight, Emmy. Something that deep down I wish people would say to me now. Because I know in my heart I should be trying to gain weight. It's no good trying to convince myself I am "healthy" and well at this current weight at which I am at. People may not know it, but I know that it is the truth. The fact that I will not bleed is enough evidence for me, for that.                                                    But to learn how to deal with this comment is something of a crucial matter for me, given that my inability too in the past has nearly caused me to go completely off track, even, relapse. Late last summer I could not sit and eat a meal without hearing that lady in the library's voice reverberating through my head. Telling me that I had a chubby face. That's only one of several instances in the past in which I have been sent tottering on the edge as a result of that simple little comment. 
  • Write a list of the Cold Truths. I think this is something that we all should try to do in recovery, as it can serve as a bit of a wakeup call if you find yourself drifting. I'll share my own in my next post.
  • And I would like more than ever now to commit to some kind of therapy. Though the problem is, though - no point trying to deny it - to even endeavour to do so is in itself something which I find myself reluctant, even scared, to do.                                                                             Why?? There's a few reasons, really; some of which are totally illogical; others, maybe not so. I'll talk about this very shortly.
  • And now more than ever I need to conquer my remaining fears. I need to feel the fear and do it anyway. I'm currently reading the book by Susan Jeffers, the title of which holds a lot of resonance for me. As soon as I started to read that book the sparks began to fly off the pages. I realised everything Susan was saying was so directly relevant for me, or for anyone in recovery. Feel the fear and do it anyway. It's ok and normal to have that fear. Everyone does. But the difference is between people who succeed and don't succeed in conquering their fears is that the successful people say to themselves that they can handle it. And so. Now I repeat that same sentence over and over in my head. I can handle this. I'm the one in control. I have the power to overcome ED. 
And the girl whose heart was bleeding and torn in two will stand up, now, and despite her wounds and scars will keep on going, on and on, with the sunrise directly in front of her.


  1. Hey! Please don't stress yourself out. I've gone through exactly the same thing. I didn't get my period for almost 2 years because of excessive exercise.. I made a blood test and my hormones were of the level of a woman who had reached menopause. I was shocked and in denial. And I want to tell you this, the stress you are creating and the dear within you is making it come later than normal. I used to cry every single month without seeing the blood on my underwear. I used to fret. I took hormonal therapy which damaged my mood and body image. I suffered every single day with bloating and IBS symptoms. I tried to eat, and failed. Lost the self-discipline. Started binging. Stopped exercising. Gained weight. It was awful.

    But I stopped all this for just one month. I told myself that I'll cut all this crap and trust my body. I threw the hormonal therapy tablets in the garbage and told my body that I loved it, and it could take the whole time in the world if it wanted. I told myself to calm down, to act as if I were in a journey. I was going to get there. I was going to get my period back.

    I ate healthy foods; I ate all the fats that I wanted instead of the carbs that made me feel awful. Eat more nuts, avocados, tahini and load up on proteins. Make every meal sacred for your body. I know you're a bit used to eating now so it will be a lot easier. Don't eat more or less, just change your mindset. Take walks and ditch the excessive exercise if you do that. And most importantly, love and TRUST yourself. Your stress hormones will go down. Your mind connections will be more free, more able to manage the havoc in your organs. Month by month, you'll start to see your discharge. You'll start to feel rather faint when you lose a lot of energy doing something. You will start building your hormones up. You will bring your body back.

    Trust your body. Your period will come. Just trust the time.. it takes years to actually come back. Be patient. There is nothing wrong with you. I went through exactly the same thing.. everyday was a struggle. Everyday I thought I had cancer.. everyday I thought that I will never have kids and started to actually believe it.

    I trusted my body for just one month. It came back on February 2017.

    Don't stress yourself, please. It will come. I promise.

  2. aww thank you so so much for sharing your story with me! <3 this means so so much. You've given me a sense of new hope and reassurance which I really needed at this time. It really is about trusting the body. The past few years Ive been fighting against it but now I know its time to stop and treat it right. Its the most precious possession we'll ever have after all! Thank you so much again. and for reading my blog too. <3 x

    1. I'll write you an email when I'm free about how do deal with it. I know how scared you feel and perhaps an email would make you more reassured. Keep going, Emily. :')

    2. <3 I would love to hear from you. Thank you ever so much!! <3 xxxx

  3. All my love, Emmy.
    More than that, I don't have any words to say in response to this. The plight of a reader is a kind of distance -- I have never met you, I cannot be with you through this in the way that someone face-to-face can. That is what I hope for you, that you will find someone (a therapist?) who can be there in the middle of the anguish and just be with you, so you are not so alone.
    It sound so banal when I just write "thinking of you". I don't know how to do better with the reader's role. I truly do think of you, and do care. (And, I am sorry for the times when *my* words have been wrong and unhelpful.)

    1. aww thank you so so much for your kind words <3 I understand what you mean, for I as the writer feel a connection to everyone who leaves a response to my posts. It is a distance but at the same time there is a sense of connection, which for me gives so much comfort. So thank you so much and I don't honestly think you have ever written anything unhelpful. I feel very lucky in that I have never received any unsupportive comments (unintentionally or not). To know you are thinking of me means such alot. You are so kind. <3 x

  4. Emmy, you are one of the bravest people I know in so many ways. And there will always be someone who can help you, don't waste your time on any others or listen to them - you are worth so, so much more <3

    1. <3 thank so much...Im so touched by what you wrote, truly. thank you again and again. It comforts me so much to know Im not alone. <3 xxxx

  5. Hi Emmy - I hope you are feeling better about things now - I really admire your determination to see the rough patches through and not give up. Recovery is full of peaks and troughs and you just have to ride it out - things WILL get better for you - just stick to your plan and take each day as it comes. The body is a strange thing but know that when yours feels safe and secure at its ideal weight you will find that everything kicks in as it should. In the meantime just nourish your body as best you can and be kind to yourself - you are travelling an incredibly difficult road that can be overwhelming, frustrating and painful at times - but remember the good times too,like when you try a new food that you like, when you manage to stick to your meal plan all day. Be proud of yourself that you have come this far and set your mind that you are not going to give up no matter how tough it gets. Remember Barcelona and the new hopes and dreams you had when you returned. It is all out there waiting for you. Stay strong and keep fighting and you will realise those dreams and ambitions xxxx

    1. thank you so so much for what you wrote <3 your advice means so are so right, and it is now that I need to start trusting my body, trusting the recovery process..if only it wasn't a case of easier said then done :'( but I know I have to try really, really hard, and keep all my goals in mind <3 Thank you so much again.. Every comment means ever such alot to me <3 xxx