Let’s Talk About…CHOCOLATE

ME ENCANTA CHOCOLATE. I’m also a little scared of chocolate. Porque? Because, there was once a time I used to demolish chocolate like the cocoa trees (or beans or whatever it’s made of) were going out of business and chuck it up in the toilet.

Remember I mentioned I had issues with control? Possibly deriving from my lack of control with my Dad’s illness, the lack of control with what life throws at you or maybe I was just born a control freak baby? Well, I’m guessing that might have something to do with the fact that at 14 I was running around the garden trying to burn my supper off, or how when I was 17, I thought I could survive off 3 coffees and Weightwatchers soup whilst going on the cross trainer for an hour and then the bicycle for 20 minutes and then 100 squats to end the session nicely.

Eating disorders come in all shapes and sizes and it’s taken me a while to realise that I guess I’ve had one or two. I’ve either restricted myself massively and been miserable or been like “I deserve the whole cake because it’s a Tuesday so yolo” and then want to get rid of it as soon as possible. There’s also nothing worse than knowing you’ve got a problem, and being at friend’s or at work panicking that the cake you had is going straight to your thighs and running to the toilet, and then leaving happy that you’ve still managed to participate in “yolo Tuesdays” and not put on the calories but also in shame that you can’t stop this addiction.

I’m a classic pear – a tiny waist and a big bum. Guys say they like it? Girls say they like it? The Spanish dog I’m living with keeps trying to hump it so I guess he likes it? But I’ve always hated it – POCO A POCO I’m trying to learn to love it instead. It doesn’t mean I don’t think I look good in some photos, BUT (and it’s really difficult to admit to) although the “I must throw up my food” thoughts aren’t in my head anymore, the “uh oh the chocolate and crisps I just ate are going to make me put on a stone” voice still is – hence why I’ve told my best friend Sophie that I’ll reply to her WhatsApp’s when I’ve finished writing this paragraph as I’m kinda panicking about the food I’ve eaten -EVEN in Sevilla because I guess the voice doesn’t take a holiday off. It’ll never go I know that, I can only try and shut it up and and write about it because the voice? Well it’s a wanker.

Sophie (hola!) needs credit for unknowingly saving my head a bunch of times and giving me reassurance that I will not put on half a stone to my face if I carry on enjoying life – and my mind is the one that needs to learn “so what if I do?!”

Immersing myself in relationships and friendships with people who love me for me, travelling solo and having to focus on more important things like getting from A to B safely gives me lots of confidence and helps me to recognise that worrying about food is unimportant and irrational. It’s not easy to stop, but it helps when I meet like minded open people on the steps of Sevilla and have conversations about mental health next to rivers in parks – (see I bet you were wondering what the river picture had to with the opening chocolate sentence right? There you have it!)

Rationalising and talking openly is probably the best kind of therapy I could hope for on this journey – so thanks Tiné – Ann-Kristin Berk – for randomly coming up to me on the steps in Sevilla thinking I was Spanish and asking me for scissors. It serves as a reminder that there is so much more to life than clouding yourself in your irrational thoughts and that there is always a reason you meet people on your journey.

An appropriate quote I read today:

” Not until we are lost do we begin to understand ourselves”

– Henry David Thoreau

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