Tips on supporting someone with an eating disorder this Christmas

The count down to Christmas has begun! There’s been a Christmas tree in my flat kitchen since November and the inflatable Rudolf on the windowsill now has a tinsel scarf, all and all I’m feeling festive. Being at Uni has really brought back some of that childish excitement that comes with Christmas. I had a lovely time on Friday making paper snowflakes with some of the girls I live with, I haven’t done that in years!

In the past few Christmases has been a very hard time for me. I spent three Christmases with an eating disorder and I couldn’t help but dread this time of year for that reason. It’s such a contrast to how I feel now. If you had asked me two years ago how would I feel about making snowflakes with my flatmates as I eat a massive chicken casserole, I would have ran. Enjoying Christmas felt impossible to me with anorexia.

In the last few days I’ve been going through some of my older posts correcting spelling mistakes I’ve missed. It’s been really nice reading things from a few years back and seeing just how far I’ve come and how faithful God has been. There was one post particular from 2017 that really struck a chord with me. It was the one where I talked about how you can support someone with an eating disorder. The post didn’t do very well, but I still believe there are a lot of good points in there that people should know. So, with Christmas coming our way I’ve decided to rewrite it as a Christmas edition. I know that it’s not going to be the most relevant post for a lot of you, but even if I help one person through this it’s worth my analytics taking a hit from this post.

Christmas is a very hard time of year with those battling any kind of eating disorder. There’s a lot of uncertainty, lot of anxiety, lot of attention and so much time spent around food. It’s a really hard time. I’m hoping I can use my experiences to provide a few tips for those supporting a loved one or friend with an eating disorder this Christmas.

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End of an era

This post feels like the end of a chapter, it’s going to be my last time writing to you guys before I go to University. In a few days time I’ll be settling into my new room and living alone for the first time in my life, to say I’m terrified would be an understatement. I’m excited, but I’m scared too.

I know that my first month at uni is going to be on the crazy side and seeing as I’m studying writing I’m really not sure how often I’m going to be able to blog. I think my writing muscles are going to be exhausted from my course. I’m not going anywhere though, don’t worry. I know I’ve dropped from posting weekly to biweekly but that doesn’t mean my blogging days are over. I’ve discovered that I have more hobbies than just blogging, I love art and I even started my own art account on Instagram to share my work. I set up my own Etsy store because I love to make things and bring a smile to people’s faces. I’ve been learning a lot about myself recently and it’s been very valuable to me. By blogging less, it’s made me enjoy it more. I’m talking to you guys because I want to and not because I feel like I have to.

I guess the reason I wanted to write today was to say thank you to you guys as I know I’m not going to be around as much for a bit. Continue reading “End of an era”

Why photography is important for my mental health

How many times have you been told by someone that when you’re feeling down you should get yourself outside, or better yet go for a run? It’s no secret that getting out and excersis has a possitive effect on your mood and health, it’s why doctors and therapists recomend it so often.

I now live in a house of runners, my mum got the bug first last year, I joined in and finally my brother gave it a go not long back and got that same bug. Before the running they were both active in walking and my brother was adamant that he would drag us up every mountain we came across (I’ve summited two so far, but I’m yet to do Snowdon even though that’s my most local mountain range). By observing them I can 100% agree of the benefits of getting out and excising has on your mental health.

But what happens when you can’t join in with those activities, what do you do then?

Me and exercise have always been a thing. I was a competitive dancer growing up and just had too much energy for my own good. I joined in with the mountainering with my family but found it unexciting. Then when I was 17 I developed anorexia and exercise took a different role all together. I tried running when I was recovering but then at 19 I developed a whole new bunch of problems with my feet that limits my mobility to this day, meaning I had to hang up my running shoes once again.

Going outside walking and exercising are both incresingly difficult tasks for me now, what really sucks for a 20 year old who’s trying to gain more inderpencae and hates sympathy. So how do I try and keep on top of my overall mood when my usual activities aren’t always an option? 

It’s simple, I pick up my camera.

Continue reading “Why photography is important for my mental health”

Being vulnerable online and remembering the start

A pretty cool date slipped under the radar yesterday, it was this blogs second birthday. It’s been two whole years since I published my very first post ‘Breaking it down’

I did start writing a post to reflect on two years of blogging however, if you’ve been keeping up to date with my posts then you’ll know that I’ve been letting myself relax more with my blog for my own health. I used to keep to a weekly schedule with my posts but as my physical and me natal health took a turn for the worst, I made the decision to relax my grip on myself regarding my blog and only post when I feel up to it (hopefully by doing this you guys will also benefit from better content to). So yes, there’s a partial post in my drafts pile reflecting on two years of blogging, but I was in no shape to finish it… sorry.

Today however, I’m feeling a bit more up to writing so I’m thinking I want to draw on some of the points from reflecting on my blog’s second birthday and some more recent events and do a bit of a Q&A.  Continue reading “Being vulnerable online and remembering the start”

What you seek

Sometimes I’m still insecure about my weight.

After everything that happened last August and God completely healing me of anorexia, I haven’t quite accepted this new body of mine yet. It’s not even like my weight gain was all that bad once I no longer had the eating disorder, I expected to blow up like a balloon and to be uncontrollably eating but that never happened. Sure to start with I was pretty bloated around the stomach area (after long periods of starvation your body doesn’t trust you so any fat it gains goes straight to your tummy area to protect all your vital organs) and my face was a little more squishy from my body retaining water. But in all honesty, I didn’t gain all that much and I didn’t get all that bigger either. Sure, I don’t own any scales and haven’t weighed myself since the disorder was no longer in my life, so mass wise I may have gained but in my physically appearance it wasn’t as scary as I expected.

I understand that at some point everyone is a little insecure about how their body looks and I know some of my insecurity’s do stem from that, and that’s ok. But my more deep insecurity’s about my body come from seeing other people who suffer from an eating disorder themselves and are at a dangerously low weight.

I don’t use the word triggering all that often, mainly because I think people have made it too mainstream and forgot the true meaning and power that word has. But using the word to it’s full seriousness, I still find unhealthy thin people triggering, it makes me wounder what I could have looked like if I just ran with my eating disorder just that little bit longer, maybe then all of the pain would have been worth it? It’s something I’ve felt a great deal of shame towards because God took away my eating disorder, so why do I miss it sometimes?

Continue reading “What you seek”

Where you stand

I’m starting this post off by saying I’m well and truly exhausted at the moment. I’m at work tomorrow and really should be switching off for the night and trying to relax before the day arrives however, instead I feel compelled to write.

I’ve been feeling a little lost in my blog as of late, some of you more long term readers might have noticed a subtle shift in my words. I’ve been struggling to pin point what’s been causing the uneasiness, part of me even considered if this was my season of blogging drawing to a close. I’m starting to think I’ve cracked where things have been going a bit wonky, I think I’ve took my eyes off the real reason for this blog.

Lost In The Story was created as an outlet for my recovery of anorexia, a safe place where I could just talk to other people and no one at all. This blog started off anonymously, no one knew who I was. I was simply a girl fighting an eating disorder and trying to find God in the mess of it all. I was a science student with no plans for the future, I wasn’t even sure if I wanted a future. Eventually though a small community developed here, whilst we’re only a small group I think I do truly have the kindest and most encouraging readers going – you’re all amazing.

The first year of my blog passed and I finished my science qualification and decided to do an extra year and study business. I started to take my blog more seriously in this year, I was learning more and more and soon was putting what I learned into practice here. I felt more empowered to try and turn this into a potential side job one day. I was still sharing my faith and my struggles but I think this was the first real stumble for me. I said right when I first started that this blog was never about making money, it was about sharing God and all the amazing things he was doing in my life. Continue reading “Where you stand”