Monday 23 July 2012

Not skimmed, not semi-skimmed but FULL CREAM milk!

Back in the days of 'high anorexia', and ever since really, a major sticking point was milk. One of the early signs that Ben's eating habits were changing for the worse was when he switched from normal coffee and tea to black coffee and tea - around three years ago. Before then, we'd always had either skimmed or semi-skimmed milk in our fridge. (Ben is on the left in the photo.)

Friday 20 July 2012

I told you we'd do it!

One week on from the 1kg weight loss during the school trip to Poland and Ben has put it all back on - plus a little more too. And he is happy with this which is excellent news.

Saturday 14 July 2012

1kg lighter, but apart from that... NORMAL!!!

Sitting in bars eating ice cream and drinking beer, going back to the hotel with M, having a "deep conversation", falling asleep, being woken up by J, N and P crashing loudly into the room later on with some of the girls, everyone going down to the girls' room on the floor below, some of the boys smoking on the balcony (not Ben!), irate teacher striding down the corridor, knocking on the door and giving them a massive telling off while standing there in his underpants... And that was just one night. Ben might have returned 1kg lighter due to bad meal planning (not his fault), but apart from that... NORMAL!!!

Wednesday 11 July 2012

Ben's gone on a school trip to Auschwitz and I'm home alone

There's something strange and bizarre about someone with (or recovered from) anorexia going to visit a Nazi concentration camp, isn't there? Someone whose starvation was self-imposed in a place where millions of people's starvation was regime-imposed... Yet both sets of people were immediately surrounded by a world where there was more than enough to eat, yet - for very different reasons - they were prevented from having it. Meanwhile I'm enjoying the welcome sense of freedom that comes from having three days to myself.

Friday 6 July 2012

A reply from the Headmaster

Oh, I miss that school already now Ben has officially left. For the past seven years it's been part of my life almost as much as it's been part of his. Four fantastic years followed by three very difficult years. Yesterday I got a reply from the Headmaster to the letter I wrote to him at the weekend. Here is an edited version:

Thursday 5 July 2012

Batty goes into a trance and deals with some issues

I've been seeing a therapist for a few weeks in a bid to get a handle on the extreme anxiety I seem to be feeling most of the time. Lately I've been having nightmares, the kind where you realise you're shouting in your sleep, or sitting bolt upright, or both, and it leaves you feeling rotten for the first few hours of the following day. I've also come out in a host of skin conditions, all thought to be stress-related.

Carefully stepping towards the next stage in recovery

Exams are over and social life is improving. Ben is also feeling more relaxed, and we've recently completed a handful of sessions with a lovely dietitian who provided Ben with a load of 'body science' i.e. why the body does what it does, especially as it emerges from an eating disorder like anorexia. Although most people love the photos of Ben at the school ball, almost everyone has commented on the fact that he still looks very thin and child-like. Some of this will be due to the starvation period stunting his physical development, no doubt, but I believe we are getting to the stage where we need to nudge forwards a bit. Importantly, I believe his mindset is in the right place to accept this...

Wednesday 4 July 2012

Two fingers up at the eating disorder again!

Following on from the extremely sociable weekend, Ben is planning to meet up with some of his old mates this afternoon to go and see Spiderman at the movies. Then on Friday he's meeting another old mate for lunch in town. Meanwhile he's joining a Warhammer club, starting on Sunday afternoon. (Warhammer, in case you don't realise, is about painting plastic fantasy / Lord of the Rings figures and playing table top war games with them. Or something like that. It's Ben's #1 passion.)

Monday 2 July 2012

What I said to the school yesterday

Following on from the bunches of flowers and cards I've taken into school, hubby and I decided it was time to write a letter to the Head to thank the school for its support over the last three years. I thought I'd share it with you...

The art of letting the positive outshine the negative

This morning Ben and I had a long, very fruitful and positive chat about this and that. "The thing is," as I said to him, "As you can imagine over this weekend, as a parent my mind was on a roller coaster. It was so easy to get bogged down in all the 'What could have beens', instead of focusing on all the positive things that have come out of this experience and as a direct result of it."

Sunday 1 July 2012

A bitter sweet weekend, all in all...

Everyone was pleased to see Ben at Prize Day, the Leavers' Ball and the Leavers' Service and Lunch today. At one point there seemed to be a constant trickle of staff coming over to me to say how pleased they were that Ben was there. One girl have him a massive hug outside the chapel after the service this lunchtime, tears in her eyes.