The moment you believe that love is not about losing or winning. It is just a few moments in time, followed by an eternity of situations to grow from – Day 21

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Dear You, (Him, the man I so hopelessly fell for)

I think about you every day. Your soft touch, the way you kissed my forehead when you walked past me. How we lay in bed exploring each others minds and enlightening each others universes. The instant hope we felt as our lips met for the first time. Everything we taught each other about love and life and everything in between.

I’m sending you love and compassion. I miss you deeply but more than that I am grateful. I will forever love you deeply and appreciate what you taught me. I would have loved for you to stay longer, but you have weeded your way out of my world.

Live and let live.

Yours truly,

Danielle

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365 days ago – Day 13

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Hollow.

Numb.

365 days ago, you walking down the isle clutching onto your dad. Faces of your your closest friends and family gleaming at you with the biggest smiles. You’re on top of the world and you can’t wait to stand next to the man of your dreams, your soul mate, the person you have chased to be your best friend and in minutes you’ll be his wife.
Only getting to the alter, look to your right, and you read your soon to be husbands face. You have been in love for years, you have a form of telepathy by now and the expression on his face tells a thousand words.
Whispering ‘are you ok?’
He says “you look beautiful’ in a stern whisper.
The priest starts the ceremony and you marrying a blank face.
Reception dinner, everyone is laughing and dancing and drinking and you’re crying under a tree because since you said those words ‘I do’, you have been told by your husband that you are not a wife, you are a child, you weren’t ready to be married and you are now attention seeking and hogging the lime light. All at your own wedding.

The day you have been dreaming about.

The man you love.

The future you had envisioned.

It all comes crashing down with everything line that he has thrown at you and you crumbling with every tear, wishing you could run and cry and be held, but you too afraid to speak to anyone because he will throw more and more lines at you.

The divorce decree has been granted – Day 22 part 2

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Amongst the bliss.

The divorce is official.

It is all over.

I feel indifferent and relieved and perhaps numb…this makes me feel guilty.

I feel light and free.

Scared, liberated, numb, alone, happy, free, guilty, heartbroken.

It’s a moment. Life is filled with moments. The chapter of my life where my husband and I lived as one was wonderful. It was one of my favourite chapters and my favourite moments. Life is filled with moments – and in every moment we feel that it is the most important of our lives and it is. The moments are real and they are fleeting and even when they are hard they are beneficial and part of the journey.

Wine time, music time, chill time, reflect and figure out what you want time – Day 15

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Of course my meeting with my boss this morning has been postponed to tomorrow morning and tomorrow morning it is not going to happen because I have a wedding dress to make and I have an appointment with my psychiatrist.

All day I just wanted to go home, I was so over work. So I binged, lately I live on junk food most days:
Breakfast – Chocolate shortbread puffs + coffee
Lunch – Tub of mini brownie bites + coffee
Dinner – Wine

He’s in New York City and I’m here at home.

He is there for a week working, if all goes well he moves there next year April and I’m here at home.
I hope he goes, I hope he follows his dreams, I hope he achieves all the success in the world and even more.
I hope he walks on the Brooklyn bridge and smiles and thinks about me.

He is there and I am here at home drinking our favourite wine.
I hope New York City loves him and sucks him in whole.
I hope he is happy and he feels the cold breeze on his cheek when running in central park in the morning.

He is there and I am home listening to our favourite songs.
I hope he wears that suit and drinks that fine whisky and goes to that blues club and has a cigar.
I hope he goes shopping in the city streets and smiles because he wishes I was there.

He is there and I am home and I’m going to sleep early.
I hope he goes out tonight and he meets great people and he smiles and he laughs and he feels free.
I hope he orders room service and drinks from the mini bars and writes words about love.

He is there and I am home and I am writing about him, thinking about him, dreaming about him.
I hope he is eating his favourite ice cream and I hope he is buying ties and new work shirts that I will tailor when he comes back home.
I hope he looks at the architecture and art and the beauty of the city and see’s me.

He is there and I am home deciding what to have for dinner.
I hope he sleeps sound tonight and misses me next to him.
I hope he comes home and calls me up first and sees me first and puts me first.

This is what eating disorder therapy looks like – Day 6

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I woke up feeling so funny this morning.

I literally didn’t leave my house because I was so horrified that I would go out and buy food and binge and purge! I woke up in a complete panic, so anxious and so edgy and I still don’t know why? So I had a bowl of muesli and yogurt and I had anxiety medication and went to sleep and then woke up at 10:30 – that hasn’t happened in forever. I’m an early bird.

Still so anxious when I woke up, I decided to paint – I was freaking out, honestly I ave never been so afraid of myself and of my eating disorder. I lay on my floor crying, crying because I am here again. Yes we all go on and on about how a relapse is perfectly natural as your body will naturally resort to familiar coping mechanisms when under pressure. But who gives a fuck if its natural, it doesn’t make it any easier. And we all sit preaching to each other to stay strong and to be gentle with ourselves. Well again, thats a lot easier said than done. We would all love to be softer and not be so hard on ourselves, but your eating disorder is screaming with a microphone in your brain and your voice seems to just get lost and becomes white noise.

And you just lay there and you just cry. Because you feel like such a failure. So much work, so much pain and so many years and so many hospital visits and so many therapists and so many dieticians and so many pills and so many electrolyte tests. Then one day you wake up and half your life is gone and you feel so guilty because you should actually be crying because you got divorced yet that makes you feel so relieved! Its this illness that weighs you down, it hurts you more than any heartbreak in this world could and now you back there again. Maybe you not wearing the hospital wrist band with your surname on it, but you might as well be, because you feel like you back there. You sitting with everyone outside and everyone is smoking and you all discussing the reason you in the hospital and Pedro is shaking because his OCD is so intense at that moment that he so badly wants a drink and Colleen has closed the curtain around her bed and tells you through the curtains that on her weekend pass she tried to commit suicide and now she is too ashamed to even peak through the curtain at you. Remember that annoying old man that kept telling you to smile, fuck him, he was so annoying. Then there’s Chelsea, where is Chelsea now?

I’ll never forget booking into hospital and Chelsea was sitting there and my brother said ‘she looks pretty normal, you gonna be fine! And I’ll come visit you all the time, and these two weeks are going to go by so fast, its all going to be fine’. Chelsea smiled and I smiled – that smile where you saying to each other ‘I wonder why you here, but I don’t even care, because I know we here together and I know we going to get through this and I know both of us are trying so hard to pretend we normal and this isn’t the weirdest situation we have ever been in.’ We became friends. She had awful depression, which is strange because she was so pretty. And thats what people think, you so pretty how can you be sad. Well thats discrimination against ugly people.

So you have these thoughts and you think about all your friends and you wonder, why are some of us as deep as a well and some of us have the emotional range of a teaspoon? So you lay crying and you think of the morning that you cut for the first time in six years and you feel so ashamed, and then you wonder; did he see the scars, surely he has seen the scars on your thigh, or maybe he just looks right past them because you just own them and you for the first time in years just decided that you didn’t even care if someone saw the scars. Its just scars, we all have scars, whether they on your skin or your heart, they all there.

But we all so scared all the time, we so scared that someone is going to find out what incredibly flawed individuals we are. We just so anxious and we actually like fucking zombies and we just so ridiculous because we all so consumed with worrying what someone else will think – Well guess what: everyone is freaking out just like you are and if someone doesn’t want to see your flaws then show them to someone else.

So now I lay here on my floor and I paint whilst doing eating disorder therapy and crying and writing – because sometimes you are just so scatter brained that you cant even do one thing, your mind is all over the place so you might as well just do things all over the place and mess paint on the carpet and cry tears into your painting because thats what life is, its being fucking real and raw. Its being a wreck and then the next minute thinking you so lame because life is actually awesome, its all over the place. Life is everywhere and its no where.

Then I repeated this cycle over and over again. Then went to buy some art supplies and made the mistake of buying a mcflurry because I don’t know how to stop the anxiety so you eat it and naturally freak out, and bulimia keeps nudging and says ‘ice cream is so easy to purge’ just do it. So you do it because you know that once you get that release you will release all of that anxiety – and again you find yourself in that familiar place, your hair tied back and eyes blood shot and you have stabbing pains in your chest but you just keep going. The sickest part is that you literally think to yourself ‘ice cream is so easy to purge, have to remember this for next time, so much easier than purging chocolate”, I mean really, how fucked up are you when you think those thoughts? How ashamed are you, why do you have this incredibly unattractive illness? Why cant you just have OCD or something like that, why do you have this ravenous illness that takes over your body. Why are you so fucked up?

YOU NOT! You are not fucked up for thinking those thoughts. You have an illness and thats ok, the mere fact that you have recognised this and are working on it is all that matters. Thats what we all tell each other right? My old instagram account that was dedicated to my recovery, all my followers and me would always comment ‘dont be so hard on yourself, stay strong, keep fighting, you are worthy of recovery’ and so on and so forth. But none of us believe it when it comes to our own hearts and souls. We continue abusing our bodies because A. It’s not as easy as it sounds to just recover; and B. Because its so much easier to take the easy route and listen to your eating disorder than to actually fight it and fight the voice, and challenge it and challenge the fears and the feelings!

But like I always say, there is nothing sexier than personal growth. Absolutely nothing, except maybe a good perfume or cologne or a great shade of red lipstick, other than that personal growth is sexy and its raw and its real.

And we all hypocrites and we all dishing out advice to each other and we all seem wise, well we are all wise, just in different ways, I guess its up to you to decide who you showing this to. Who are you going to be your raw self with and when are you going to be scared and horrified and cry and sob and feel sorry for yourself and just be open and just say ‘I’m a human and I’m flawed and I want to be perfect but I cant be and thats fine and its also not fine at the same time because thats human nature’. We all so freaking flawed and we just trying to be perfect.

Well guess what – everyone always thinks I’m perfect because for some reason I am the most resilient human being on planet earth, I mean really – give me a grenade thats about to kill me and I’ll probably find something creative to do with it. Thats just me. But you, you resilient as well, you just have to show it and stop hiding and stop being scared and stop isolating yourself! And how ironic – here I go, dishing out advice, because we all fucking hypocrites.

Doing eating disorder therapy all night

I held my heart in my hands and I listened to it – Day 2

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Binge and purge on four bowls of granola this morning – I love granola! So awful start, also skipped gym. Got to work and wasn’t feeling particularly motivated but I gave myself a stern talking to because I really to start getting inspired and excited about work again.

Naturally skipped all my meals for the rest of the day and this evening I sat and I did eating disorder therapy homework and it was incredible. It was hard at times and there are many interesting observations I made. I am quite clearly still harbouring a lot of anger towards my ex husband (I wonder when it will become ex husband, things are really taking their time)

I also have many issues with not being good enough.

Interesting observation, is that I have a fear of growing up, I think many of us with eating disorders do. I think its perhaps because I am the youngest, I am the baby of the family, it just happened so. I am always being protected and everyone is constantly looking out for me and worrying about me, I am the baby. This is all good and well but I feel that I have this fear because I am scared to fail and also because my husband always called me a child – its engraved in my mind that I am a child.

Somehow I feel that my growth keeps getting stunted somehow. My family really wants me to grow of course, but I am still the baby in their eyes. The one that needs to be looked after (I cant exactly blame them for feeling this way as I have for some reason my whole life always found myself in some kind of emotional turmoil). As a child, my brother and sister used to call me the tap – because I cried all the time, I was literally like a tap that you could switch on and off. I was so incredibly sensitive. I went to boarding school as well and there I had my brother and sister look out for me.

When I was about 14 I often used to burst into tears because I didn’t know what was wrong, I didn’t know what I was feeling. I would cry because I was scared that I would never amount to anything and I would cry because I didn’t feel like I fitted in anywhere or that I couldn’t relate to anyone.

Because I went to boarding at the age of six, I was never taught how to deal with emotion and I never witnessed a lot of emotion in my family as I only saw them on every third weekend and then during the holiday. When we got together it was all about celebrations and being together – if there was something that I was upset about I would just sweep it under the rug because I wanted to enjoy my time with my family. Only when I was nineteen and all my drama came out did I actually connect with my family on a more emotional level. Only then did I become open with them.

Anyway, growing up scares me because I feel in a way that no one is allowing me to. The fact that I don’t earn much money makes me feel awful because my mum still gives me money – I feel like I cant make it a month without her help. Also the fact that I now live on my uncles property. The fact that I don’t feel that I am growing at work anymore.

I really don’t feel like I am growing. The fact that I took the risk of getting divorced and putting so much work into healing and into my personal growth has really made me look at every aspect in my life in a completely different way. If it isn’t feeding my soul anymore then why am I still doing it?

At work I am starting to feel that the only reason I am still in my job is because of my boss. Because I love her and I am so loyal to the business and we have become such incredible friends. I don’t feel like I am challenged at work or motivated or growing. I am doing this for her, for her business and because I don’t want the brand to fail, I want the brand to thrive. However, I am no longer thriving?

This really is the year of me. For the first time in my life I am putting myself first and doing whats good for me and taking responsibility for myself.

I think this is one of the reasons why I fell for him so quickly – because I just said ‘fuck it, I want to kiss you so I am going to kiss you’, I didn’t lie worrying about how it would affect me later, I didn’t think about my husband, I didn’t think about the fact that I am still technically married. It just felt right and I just followed my heart and I took a risk and it has been amazing.

I thought I could never pull out from under my husbands stare. Well I did. I held my heart in my hands and I said ‘fuck it’. I’m taking your word and I’m listening to it, and as real as the blood pumping through the veins in my heart – that is how real this year has been. That is how real things become when you listen to your heart and you risk everything for your heart.

I fear I’ll die from complications – complications from the things that I have left undone.

Guilt plagues me – Day 15

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Fuck you eating disorder. I’ve been diagnosed with EDNOS – anorexic tendencies and binge purge subtype and obsessive exercising. Guilt and shame. Feeling like I don’t deserve anything. Anorexia stop saying I don’t deserve love and I don’t deserve food. Bulimia stop telling me that you are the only one that is there for me, you are the only one that can comfort me.

Stop making me want to isolate myself and get caught up in this web. This illness thrives in secrecy. I just want to hide in it but i actually want someone to hold me and tell me they understand that as bizarre as this is, they understand the crisis that it is.

I have to call my mom and tell her that I am not doing well but I feel so guilty. I feel so sorry that I am doing this to myself and that I am doing this to them. I don’t want them to be concerned and I don’t want them to worry. They have done so much for me, they have supported me in so many ways. I feel that I just keep failing and failing and that they need to pick up the pieces. I know that recovery is a team based approach and I know I cant do it myself and my family knows this too. I however just cant bring myself to open up to them.

Therapy is so expensive, I really cant afford it on my own anymore and again I feel terrible to ask my parents for help because they have done so much for me already.

Guilt just plagues me. I feel guilty when someone is nice to me and I feel guilty when someone gives me something. Again because that is the way my husband treated me, every nice thing he did for me was mentioned over and over again in a way as to say ‘I do so much for you and you do nothing for me’. So now Guilt plagues me. I panic when someone is kind towards me because I think I need to give them something in return and I also think that while they might be doing something nice – they might switch to a completely different person in seconds.

So the cycle went like this today. I spent the night with him and it was wonderful and we had a wonderful morning. He is wonderful and he is so special and has such an amazing heart and is so sensitive and supportive. When I stare into his eyes I look at him looking at me and I know he understands. Then I get shy when he just looks at me and admires me. We lay in each others arms hugging each other tight and I picked out his suit for the day. It was perfect.

Get to work smiling from ear to ear and slowly this voice starts creeping in and I start to panic because A. I feel insecure, because I am horrified of the unknown and being out of control and having no idea where this relationship is going, I just want it to go on and on. And then B. There is my own inner disordered voice chiming in that I don’t deserve anything good C. There is guilt because I really love being with him but I feel like I am a mess that he doesn’t have to clean up. And the most ridiculous part of all of this is that I will support him until the end and I will hold him and I will walk with him through anything.

Ironically when I am with him – I am me, I am so confident around him and I am so inspired by him and I just want to be vulnerable and open and unguarded. When I am with him I feel calm and I feel strong enough to conquer anything and I am present and I am in the moment with him.

But then the anxiety starts and so I want to binge and purge because I am feeling overwhelmed and out of control and guilty and I cant seem to just let go and I am anxious. Then of course my good friend bulimia doesn’t want to be left out and she assures me that no matter what happens she will always be there to comfort me. So off I go and I spend an insane amount of money that is literally going to end up in the toilet – Literally! I struggle with the emotions and I am scared because I feel I am weak and the disorder is so much stronger than me. I am disappointed in myself and I am scared to disappointment my family. Im standing in the queue with the sugary treats – always sugar. And I am so anxious and scared and my eyes slowly start to tear but I of course keep it in.

I binge and purge in the mall. What the fuck? And I just binge, all I want in that moment is for someone to hug me and squeeze me so tight and tell me its ok, I’m ok, everything is ok. But I am too scared to show this dirty secret of mine so I don’t reach out – because once again – how awkward is that phone call ‘Hi so and so – ummm I really want to b/p please help me’. I guess I don’t even have to tell the person that I want to b/p, I can just say I am anxious, strangely enough I am a sucky liar about this. So I just binge and I push all those feelings away and I am on auto pilot and it is an out of body experience and I have completely disassociated from myself. The shell of Danielle is on the floor binging and purging but I am looking in – I’m not actually doing this. It happens so quickly and then I am so calm. Then the guilt and the shame attacks and then I purge – again I am watching myself purge and I feel helpless because I feel that there is nothing I can do to stop this from happening. And then the ocean of calm. I feel how flat my stomach is and I decide if I have purged enough. And I relax for a few moments because my eyes are blood shot and my heart is beating and my stomach hurts.

Then its over. Just like that. I rinse out my mouth and splash my face with water I am calm and life continues as if nothing happened. And everyone continues to tell me what a strong and resilient young woman I am. And all I am is a fraud. I’m like everyone out there. We all have our stuff and we have our demons – my demon just had to show itself in a very sick manner – none the less we all have our demons.

Everyone is walking around looking pretty and we look in control when we really all just winging it.

So I didn’t do that great today. But I will keep putting one foot in front of the other and I will keep fighting and I will keep moving on and staying strong.

I am amazed that in 10 days time PARTII of 25days of divorce will be over. A friend of mine asked the other day when I think I actually started over and accepted what happened and owned the past and moved on. It was day 2 of PARTI. When I moved into my own room, thats when it hit me – there was no going back – I am only going forward. And that is exactly how it is with my eating disorder – I am moving forward, even if it doesn’t feel that way, every day is a day closer to recovery and every day I get closer to being free. No matter how despondent I feel right now, no matter the fact that I feel this illness will never leave me – I know deep down I will conquer this.