I Fell Off The Wagon… and It Hurt.

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I’m laughing at myself while I write this.

My healthy eating/mental health experiment went bust..big time.

I won’t bother making all the usual excuses. I simply lost motivation. It started with a Dominos, and ended in me gaining back all the weight I’d initially lost. My usually spacious size 10’s were stretched within an inch of their life, and my muffin top was starting to looking like a full-blown bakery. Thinking about it now, I was totally unrealistic and somewhat obsessive. I was completely depriving myself of food I enjoyed, thus making my cravings ten times stronger.

And so, here we are. I’m setting up my Fitbit, again, and sipping peppermint tea to get my relatively large arse back into gear. My main problem was eating out of boredom – something which can be frequent when living alone. So I’ve kick-started my walking routine, again, in the hope that this will distract me and burn off any treats I’m allowing myself this time around.

Prior to the relapse, I did notice a difference. I had far more energy, meaning I fought off any ‘bad days’ much easier. My skin was the best it had been since I was 18, and I felt genuinely good about my body for the first time in…ppft..5 years?

AND SO, it is with the deepest dedication and highest hopes that I plan to start again. I’ve noticed where the problems lie – living next to an ice cream shop and drinking beer, primarily. Not to mention the frequent pity parties I was throwing during a turbulent fortnight of hangovers, stressful working days and being dumped on my birthday – another tale, another time.

Anyway, take two…

 

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Body for Mind : My First Week

The Diary, Uncategorized

I think to think I’ve tried most methods to maintain, if not improve, my mental health. Medication – check. Therapy – been there. Meditation – tried that.

For a while, I was a fucking hippy, trying to see what soothing effect it might have.

The one thing I could never, ever stand was people telling me that they felt relief with exercise and healthy eating…


I follow a lot of gym bunnies on Instagram, and some of my friends are in the fitness and health field. My timelines are forever loaded with the irritating, motivational ‘fitspo’ pictures and guides.

‘How the fuck can that make you feel good? Genuinely?’

I hated hearing about how people enjoyed exercise, how it helped their stress levels and how their outlook on life was improved by working out and treating their body right. I rubbished it as a lie in order to rope in some more poor bastards to their gym classes, or to pay for expensive diet regimes.

It felt patronising, if I’m honest. Someone telling me, a person with a diagnosed condition, that sit-ups and lettuce could help. I felt like they were almost implying that my brain could be rewired if I ate more Omega 3, or avoided oven chips.

It wasn’t until last month, when I had a ‘shakey moment’, that I decided to cave to the hype. I made a deal with myself that I’d set up an experiment, for a short period of time, to see if working out more and eating better had any effect on my bipolar. I ordered a new recipe book, dug out my dad’s WonderCore and gave myself two months to feel an improvement.

I started planning meals, subscribed to yoga tutorials and drew up my own work-out routine with exercise that I might actually enjoy. For added pressure, I told all my friends about my plan so that they would spot when I was being lazy or eating shit.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m still giving myself treats – everything in moderation, they say.

The focus wasn’t on weight loss or physical improvements, but I welcomed the possibility of getting more fit and toning up my ever-growing arse. As previously disclosed, I’ve dealt with eating phobias when I was younger, so it was important to me not to get caught up in the wrong goals.

And so it begun. I was one of those people.

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It’s been a week now.

I work out 4 times a week, at home, and use the Lean In 15 cook book to make up my packed lunches and dinners.

I hate myself for saying this – but I can feel things changing already.

Let’s be clear, I won’t be posting any ‘progress pics’ of my pale boy-ish body. That’s not what I’m doing this for. But I do feel my shape changing.

With hillwalking, my legs have become more toned and the yoga has helped my core. I work myself into a sweat for 1 hour and then I stop – making sure not to overdo it. My biggest surprise has been how much I enjoy my new meals, I eat so much more fruit and vegetables – despite previously eating quite a lot. My meals taste healthy and light, but I’m rarely able to finish them because they’re so filling!

It feels good to have my workmates comment on how tasty my lunches look now, as opposed to jokingly rolling their eyes at yet another box of doughnuts.

As for my mind? The progress is coming, but it’s much slower.

I try and power-walk 3 miles a night, luckily I live in quite a safe and scenic area so it doesn’t feel like a chore. After my first walk, I felt great. I felt like I’d actually found something I could stick to and incorporate into my strict routine. Working out definitely helps to relieve any stress, but mostly it serves as a distraction.

Living alone, I find I get too wrapped up in my own thoughts when I don’t have company, so this was helpful.

Although it only been a week, I’m optimistic about the changes to come. I’ve become one of those people that I once hated, but I was probably jealous of their will-power.

Anyway, that’s the first week done. Stay tuned to see how I get on!

So far, so great.

feeling myself

It Won’t Be Lonely This Christmas.

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So there I was, crying into my laptop and devouring coffee to get me through the last of my Christmas shopping. It was my brother’s turn to cause me heart palpitations and, despite knowing what he likes (comics, PlayStation and generally avoiding daylight), I just couldn’t find anything to buy him. I was perusing ASOS, hunting for a nice shirt or yet another Nike t-shirt for him when it struck me.

This is the first Christmas in 5 years that I won’t be buying a gift for that ‘special someone.’

It stuck with me for a minute, and eventually I shrugged off the thought with a smirk. Did it feel weird? Sure. Bittersweet? Somewhat. 

But oh my GOD, right now? I wouldn’t have it any other way…


Being single over the Festive period always has, and probably always will be, painted negatively – especially towards us girls. We’re seemingly programmed to crave someone to spend time with at Christmas markets, have wintery ‘days in’ with or – let’s be crude – do the nasty with while wearing Santa hats.

Just me? 

Generally speaking, though, everyone seems to feel that pang on the run up to Christmas. There’s a sense of comfort, I suppose, in knowing that no matter how miserable the weather is – you have someone to be around. And, if you’re like me and love buying people presents, there’s a little buzz about giving them the perfect gift.

HOWEVER.

This year, being the first in a while that I’ve been a single lass, I’ve decided that I’m going to make a seemingly negative thing work for me. It’s no mystery to you all now, that my love life is a bit of a joke. I always swore not to let the blog become a Carrie Bradshaw-type page, where I cry and moan about relationships. But let’s be honest – my dating activities are…interesting. And it supplies most of the entertainment in my life.

Urgh, Kathryn, could you be any more bitter? 

Honestly – I’m not some sad little hag who batters her keyboard loose when my love life is flat. I just think it’s about time someone preached the positives to flying solo over the Festivities.

So, without further ado, here are some of the points that I’ve begun to notice this Holiday period!

 1. THE BIGGY!….IT’S CHEAPER!

I usually try a set a budget with my partner at this time of year. An agreed amount, so that neither of us are shown up at the time of present-giving. I mean, what’s more awkward than you giving him socks, and him giving you a Swarovski bracelet?

In all seriousness, though. It’s not just the gift – it’s the days out before Christmas, it’s the aforementioned cute dates to the markets (6 quid for a German beer by-the-way…I’m good.) It’s the travelling to and from said dates, it’s buying his parents gifts. It’s a small fortune.

I’m sorry, but I’m already neck-deep in my overdraft. My savings have taken more of a pounding than yer maw. I simply cannot afford love this year.

CHRISTMAS DAY IS MY DAY. AND JESUS’. 

I don’t know if I’m just an anti-social little bitch, but the idea of spending Christmas Eve/Christmas Day with anyone outwith my family makes my metaphorical balls shudder. Christmas, to me, has always been the same. I spend it with my nearest and dearest, I don’t actually WANT to be around anyone else’s family. I hate the idea of sharing my time between my family and theirs, I’d rather be sat at my Papa’s feet, listening to him swear at the TV.

Just how it should be.

MATE DATES.

The one thing I’ve noticed this Winter, is the amount of extra time that I have to spend with my friends. Typically, my weekends would be consumed by being with my partner, doing cute lil wintery things. But this year, they’re spent being stanky drunk on tequila with my favourite humans. YAY.

GUY GIFTS.

As I said earlier, I love buying presents at any time of the year. The only thing is, when you’re in a relationship, Christmas shopping becomes Hellish. I’ve seen couples genuinely brawl over poor present choices (Shallow, yes. I know.) and I just can’t be assed with worrying about that.

If he just liked cheese toasties and Strongbow, that’s great. But I always seem to date guys with the weirdest interests and hobbies.

It’s not so easy to find a portable metal detector or organic seasonal herb kit, y’know.

THE WORK NIGHT OUT.

Three words: Go. Full. Slag.

I’ll just leave that there.

(Ps, have a safe lunch, always use a condiment x)

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NO AWKWARD INTRODUCTIONS.

I can be quite an awkward girl to introduce to your family.

I stare, have a weird laugh and will probably just be waiting on dinner being served. Which is why it’s a small mercy not to have to meet any guys’ extended family this year. I’m awful at pretending to be enjoying someones company, so if you’re creepy Uncle Ian looks at me like that again, his balls will be the new tree decorations.

Otherwise, I’m just genuinely really bad at remembering names. I’d rather not embarrass either of us, darling.

The moral of the story is this: there are so many advantages to being a single pringle this Christmas, and if you can’t see it, you’re living a very sad, dependant existence. I’m kidding, but seriously – take the time that you used to invest in someone else (who, by-the-way, wasn’t worth the time or money – clearly) and indulge in some treats for yourself! I’ve just spent, what would’ve been, my ‘Boyfriend Budget’ on a Zadig and Voltaire bag and some books.

SLEEEEEIIIIGHHH.

Stay fabulous, from one Bitter Bitch to another x

The New Addition To Our Family – James ‘Jinky’ McCormick!

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Meet Jinky, he’s now nearly 11 weeks old, and was adopted from the animal rescue centre where I work. Jinky, along with his two siblings and his mother, were found abandoned in a park when the kittens were 2 weeks old. At the time, I worked in the cattery department of the centre and fell completely in love with them all!

After a fair bit of thought, I pitched the idea of adopting him to my grandparents. I thought that the kitten would be good for them both, giving my gran something new to focus on besides my papa, and giving my papa company while he deals with vascular dementia. The kitten would keep both their brains ticking over and entertain them. My gran is a natural carer, so she’s completely thrived on looking after him. My papa, on the other hand, was caught feeding him baked beans from his dinner plate.

I’d love to blame the dementia, but my papa is a feeder. 

 

What Happens When Your Tinder Date Licks Your Hand. (Yes, you read it right.)

The Diary, Uncategorized

I’ve had Tinder on and off for the past year. My experiences have been few but varied, and my ego has been simultaneously fluffed then bruised. A lot of people have a sense of embarrassment for their Swiping Antics, but I see it as a laugh. And as long as you’re safe and tell your friends where you’ll be/who you’ll be with, nothing should go wrong. Right?

Wrong.


He left it to me to decide where we could go for a drink, so naturally I chose my favourite bar in Glasgow and sat myself at a centre table, waiting for him to arrive from uni.I’d been chatting to Kieran* for about a week when I decided he might be alright to have a pint and pizza with, so there I was, patiently waiting to see if Tinder had (once again) failed me.

When he arrived, he offered to buy me a drink. Lovely, great start. He was half Portuguese, and reminded me of someone, I just couldn’t place who it was.

If any of you have ever been on a date with me (doubtful),  I’ll usually say ‘surprise me’ when you offer to go to the bar. I’m judging you on your drink choice. Heavily.

He came back with a gin and tonic, so I thought I’d break the ice by telling him a tale about how a 16 year old me drank 2 gins and ended up in tears – thus, my conclusion that gin makes me cry. I thought it’d be a funny anecdote, but instantly he pulled a disgusted face and started dissecting my story.

‘I mean, just because you cried after gin, doesn’t mean it was the gin that made you cry, know?’

‘Well, yeah…but you know how some people say certain drinks make them cry? I always just assumed it was that.’ *nervous laugh*

‘Maybe it was because you were a stupid wee girl who tried gin.’

Maybe he’s just tired after studying, I thought. He was a PhD student. Or maybe he was on his period, I dunno.

FYI, I fucking hate gin but I drank it because I needed something to prepare me for what was probably going to be a…difficult evening. Plus, I’m not a rude cunt. A concept lost on some people.

We ordered food, and through the week I’d laughed at him via text about his choice of pizza topping. (Ham and pineapple, by-the-way. And if that wasn’t grounds for divorce, I don’t know what was.)  We chatted away about work and friends, I tried to be polite and ask about his course but his responses were verbal pat-downs, questioning my ability to understand the terms he used and the scientists he was referencing. I like science, so my back was up by now. We got on to talking about religion, and he proceeded to ‘jokingly’ called me ‘Fenian Scum’ (I’m not actually Catholic, so that was weird) and refer to himself as an ‘Agnostic, Protestant, Atheist.’ I can’t remember how he justified the existence of such a stance on faith, I’d probably stopped listening by this point. My face was red for him.

I was completely bummed out. I was sat with this beautiful, insanely smart guy and all I wanted to do was smash his face into his pizza.  I was furious with his false advertising.

‘Tequila?’ I asked. On dates, I like to see what the guy is like after a shot. Barriers go down and true colours come out, I say. Surprisingly, he agreed to it. He did actually seem to mellow out a little, thank god. And for about an hour, he was good company. He was quite sweet, funny and began to have a bit of a laugh with a drunken, older couple beside us.

‘ANDREW GARFIELD!’

I’d finally remembered who he looked like. Spiderman himself. Andy G, solid 10/10.

‘Do you KNOW how often I get that? I mean, its not even funny anymore, fuck.’

You’d honestly think I’d told him he looked like Ed Balls. He wasn’t happy, at all. He was disgusted that I’d brought it up and repeatedly rolled his eyes. I had just told him he looked like one of the world’s most attractive men, and he was explicitly pissed at me.

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So we were sat there, awkwardly chair-dancing to some sort of 70s disco song and making small talk. He grabbed my shoulder and twisted me round, squinting his eyes as he done it. My tattoo, he was checking the tattoo. I awkwardly smiled as he mumbled something about it. The next thing I knew, he was looking at my hand. He grabbed it, and LICKED the back of it. My face must’ve been a picture. I assume, now, that he was trying to be flirty and get the rest of the salt from the previous Tequila Slammer. At least I hope that’s what he was doing, I’ll never know.

But still. Homeboy, no. Just no.

A few more beers and another tequila later, we called it a night, and I -being a regular at the bar- said goodbye to my favourite bouncer, who replied with ‘Bye, Michael!’ (A personal joke.) Kieran* scowled at me, questioning why I was being called this. And continued to walk ahead of me in a huff. Nevertheless, I walked 5 steps behind him to his subway stop. I had just stepped onto the escalator when I could see his face hurtling towards mine and him confidently going in for the kill. How could he think this was a good idea? Maybe it was a last ditch attempt to save the date. I closed my eyes and thought of Adam Levine. The kiss passed. He smiled at me, smugly. And all I could think about was the coffee I’d need for the train home. I waved him off, and made a swift move for my station. On my walk, I must’ve looked like a psychopath as I was laughing out loud at the thought of what had just happened.

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Offensive comparison, apparently.

The next day, there were no messages until 8pm. A text saying how he felt in a ‘funk’, and ‘not sure if we were compatible for a relationship.’ No shit, Sherlock. I responded with an aloof, easy-breezy message. Basically, I told him I thought he was mad to even be thinking about a relationship and that I was in total agreement about the compatibility statement.

One date. One date and he was already writing off our future marriage and children. I was devastated. Obviously.

Alas, I proceed to tire my thumb out daily by swiping left. I don’t even know why I still use the fucking thing, call it boredom or an undying need for flattery when you’ve matched with ‘Ben’ from East Kilbride. Or your ex’s best friend. *cough*

The thing with Tinder is that it can either go swimmingly, and you can have a swell evening with your date and possibly strike up something lovely. Or, you can meet someone who is the polar opposite from their interactive impression. This was my first poor experience from using it, and I’m slowly but surely starting to see why people give me that awful look when I tell them what I’m focusing so hard on during lunch.

Don’t hate the player, hate the game, right?

The reality of it all is that, nowadays, you’re becoming less and less likely to meet anyone organically. I’d love to be sitting in a bar and have a guy approach me with fantastic chat and ask for my number, or to have the confidence to approach someone myself. But unfortunately, these things rarely happen. The scene, now, is that single people are sat in their rooms at night sleepily swiping through hoards of strangers. But, c’est la vie. It’s all for fun, and I’ll maybe worry more when I hit 40 and start adopting copious amounts of cats.

I swayed with the idea of writing this post, out of respect for Kieran* and pure shame for myself. But then again, if you can’t laugh, you’ll cry. Tinder is a freak’s playground, and unless you’re savvy, you’ll end up having your hand licked by a huffy, middle-class brat who doesn’t like cake.

I mean, come on…

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CBT – Part II.

The Diary, Uncategorized

It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything informative regarding treatment, so I thought I’d give you the lowdown on what’s being going on during Jim and I’s appointments.

To recap, the last time I posted about CBT, it was just starting. I was a naive little thing, who didn’t actually believe that it’d make a difference in the grand scheme of things. But it has, and not in the way I expected.

My appointments have now gone from weekly to fortnightly, which I suppose is a good sign – well, as good as it could get when you’re literally being treated for being a miserable cow. The past few months with Jim have been…bizarre. He’s a strange guy, but they always say that those who study the mind are somewhat mad themselves, don’t they?

The sessions start off the exact same way that they always have, with a session objective and focus point. Jim usually asks me to score my weeks out of 10, and expects a full justification on the score given. For example, last week I said ‘7/8, because nothing bad has happened.’ Jim doesn’t like that. He feels ‘just because nothing bad has happened, doesn’t mean it deserves that score.’ He wants reasons, prompting me to eventually list the positive things in life. Family, friends etc – I think he does this to remind me that there’s good shit going on. I’m not so ill anymore where I don’t know this, but he likes to remind me, I guess.

Over the past few weeks, we’ve been studying my perception of things and how it compares to the actual reality. The thing with my condition is that, once you have your first ‘wobbly’ moment, your perspective is almost instantly tarnished. Nothing is completely good, everything MUST have a negative side – or at least a side that you’re unsure of. Paranoia is a better term for it. Usually, Jim asks about my thoughts regarding a situation that’s occurred since last seeing each other. A typical conversation might go like this:

Jim: And how did that make you feel?

Me: Ehhh, a bit shit I suppose. Like I’m a bad person.

Jim: But what do bad people do? In your opinion…

Me: Kill people, steal, cheat…that kind of thing *nervous laugh*

Jim: And do you do those things?

Me: …No.

Jim: So are you really that bad a person then?

He probes at everything. He wants to know why you think your thoughts, and where they’ve come from. He will always emphasize the difference between thoughts and reality, which is probably the hardest part for me to accept. I’m a stubborn git, so it’s hard for me to understand that my thoughts aren’t completely right, 100% of the time.

In terms of diagnosis progression, I’ve started to show signs of a bipolar-sort syndrome. One minute I’m in love with everything and everyone, the next I’ll be sliding back in to who I was in December. I’ll admit that I can be passive aggressive, and I go silent with genuine anger sometimes – for no reason at all. It’s easier to shake now, though. And usually I just sleep it off, or go to my mums to feel a bit safer. That sounds morbid, as if I cant be left alone – but once you know what your mind is capable of, you’re better safe than sorry. It rarely happens, but when it does, that’s the jam. Jim approves, and seems chuffed that I’m able to take this protective steps for myself.

I get ‘homework’ now, too. I bought myself a sassy little folder from Paperchase for it.

£2.50 by-the-way. For a sheet of fucking colourful plastic.

It’s full of leaflets, worksheets and appointment cards. If I escape the appointment without some sort of workbook, Jim will mail it to me the next day. There is absolutely no escaping that shit. Anyway, it’s actually an Australian programme that we follow, broken down into units like Worry, Intrusive Thoughts, Repetitive Behaviour and GAD (Generalised Anxiety Disorder). Every base is kinda covered. Typically, I need to fill out a few pages for the next session, along with a quiz to keep track of my general mood, regularity of harmful thoughts etc. Which, by-the-way, are very rare and diluted now. Always a funky sign!

The thing that still surprises me about CBT is the level of mindfulness that I’m gaining. Since starting, I’m definitely more aware of my thoughts and their origins. And even though I can’t control them, I understand them a little more. I know what causes me to jump to conclusions, to feel fear or to be comforted.

Prosecco. Pizza. Will & Grace – in that order. FYI.

I think I started therapy assuming that Jim would be some monocle-wearing idiot, questioning me about my childhood and such. But really, all he does is assure me that everything starts somewhere. And it’s his job to find why my depression began, and how to deal with it. In terms of the bipolar symptoms, he’s monitoring those along with my GP. I always thought that a therapist would just try to make you happy and get over shit, but it’s actually the contrary. There’s a lot of confronting yourself, as cheesy as that sounds. It’s all good though, I know that it’ll make a difference in the long run.

Anyway, it’s going okay. I can’t say I enjoy blethering about feelings to a relatively new person, I’m a bottler. It’s a bit tricky for me to start appointments, but once the ball starts rolling, I’m good.

I’ll always endorse the attendance of therapy to anyone who has the option. Private or NHS, these people are pretty good at what they do. As I’ve said before, it’s a mindfuck, but you’ll get there. It’s worth it.

POLYVORE.

The Fashion Edit, Uncategorized

One of my favourite things to do whilst commuting, or when I’m just bored, is build outfits using Polyvore. The app lets you browse through a bunch of different brands, picking pieces to construct your ideal outfits or little wish lists. Which is exactly what I’ve done!

It might not look like it, but I do actually enjoy fashion – and having dabbled in styling, I love seeing outfits come together.

From this wish list, I’ve actually managed to buy a few of the items – and found a high street equivalent to the shoes in New Look. Because unfortunately, One does not piss money. Shockingly, most of the items are black and gold- because that’s my jam.

Brands and prices below.

Belt, New Look. £3.99 – only available in M/L, so when I bought it, I had to punch a few extra holes in the material.

Tshirt, Noa Jeans, both MANGO, both £19.99 – PS the jeans are the comfiest fucking things I’ve ever purchased and make everyones booty look fabulous.

Leather Jacket, ALLSAINTS £358

Shoes, Givenchy, £605 – alternatives available in New Look for £25.

Bag, Prada £1150

Watch, Myku, £690

Playing Catch-Up.

Uncategorized

I’d love to say that I was too busy to post for the past few weeks, but the truth is, I’ve had absolutely nothing to say – for once. I’ve been working, drinking and generally being a floating soul.

The response to my last post, ‘Love From A Lunatic’, was…interesting. Along with a number of messages from people with their own tales, the page’s views sky-rocketed. Which made me realise one thing – you bitches will do anything to read about someone’s love life. But that’s what it’s there for, I guess.

To summarise the past few weeks, however, here’s some bullet points.

  • I’m still slightly mad. CBT has continued, medication has been renewed and I’m floating along like a fart in the wind.
  • I’ve gained about 5 pounds, and so now have embarked on a horrific, painful journey to shift it. I now drink Green Tea and only have ‘fun’ carbs twice a week. I do not recommend it.
  • I’ve seen Deadpool, and realised that Ryan Reynolds has a crooked bottom tooth. Anyone that knows me will know how deeply that affects me.

So, as I said earlier, nothing too exciting. But I’m working on some new posts for you guys, if you’re still reading.

I hope everyone is well, and if you’re a fellow lunatic, the page is somewhat helpful to you.

Let’s be sassy.

sassy