25 min read

365 Days - to 180 degrees

365 Days - to 180 degrees

There are 365 days in a year. That, we are taught in Primary School.
And a year is defined as the time it takes for the Earth to fully orbit the sun.
Usually, and unequivocally as we grow older, years tend to go quicker.
However, this year has felt both quicker and slower than usual. So much has happened to quicken the pace, yet its been full of roadblocks that have stopped me dead in my tracks. There definitely hasn't been the apparent time continuum of expotential pace, yet there has been.
Let's just say my shit began well before Covid-19 even was a word recognized in our 2020 vocabulary.

I am a bit late but I wanted to recap the past year, that being from July 2019 - June 2020. This timeframe I can confidently say has equally been both the best and worst 365 days of my life. Tumultuous and earth-shattering, but also subsequently empowering and grounding. It was the cumulative of a lot of tipping points, the build up of years of tension and repression. I was often so close to the edge of breaking, but I maybe never broke. And I continued to think that I was breaking more and breaking again... Until I didn't think I could break anymore, then again... and then this past year happened. I never fully appreciated the term 'breakdown' as people (myself included) so often associate with with more generic feelings or general poor mental health. But a psychotic break is something which I discovered to be altogether different, well that what I think its been?
I'm not even sure if I have?

In July 2019 - I ran the Goldfields Pipeline Marathon in Kalgoorlie and achieved a 3rd place, with an astounding PB. I try not to draw negatives from this experience, but maybe I was already so numbed out from restriction that my body wasn't capable of feeling the intense strain I put it through by running a marathon. Most marathoners, even professional athletes will taper and have a two week recovery period post run, as the actual event is just so taxing on the body in its entirety. I ran on nothing, and meditated for the final 25km without feeling pain and I didn't have the same punitive self-critical internal dialogue that I'd had in previous marathons that I had run. I used to think of this as if I had found some meditative strength, but in hindsight maybe I had just learnt how to dissociate. From the marathon, I drove home and then subsequently attended a three day Iron Ore conference, with my ticket sponsored by the company that I worked for. I used to believe that this was some great honor, but to be honest I had to fight for months in advance to suggest the idea of getting our staff to attend and have a presence. So it was out of no honor or diligence of the company to send me, but again out of my bullheadedness and constant need to be moving forwards in any perceivable way. I'm always searching for more, in every aspect of my life. I always have and I dont know why... maybe its just living in constant state of 'survival mode'?

This pervasiveness and need to move forwards followed me into August 2019 - as I got super invested in work completing overtime at our magnetite site, Iron Bridge. I was stoked to get to go on days off, and to even be asked... again I saw this as a great honor and that I felt respected and valued by the company. However, it was logical given my constant drive and perceived competency and will to work that I would be asked to go. No disrespect to my ability as a Geologist, but shame in my inability to choose what was right and indeed healthy for me. Regardless I went, and I am still glad I did, as the Chief Geologist and I potentially could rewrite some history with stromatolites, a new paradigm with some hand-specimens that we found of a structural complexity not known from that time period. I also had South Australia job opportunities arise, a position that upon interview I was told that was filled, and then against all odds I got offered. I felt supported, valued, even for a just a moment I felt like I was a good geologist. I was proud of myself, at least I was good at something? In this same month it had been flagged to me that I was 'Intimidating', like how the fuck am I intimidating? all 47kg of my lightweight fucking frame... Maybe it was the chihuahua in me - the little fighter, never ever back down and always on the go.
Black and white thinking, down the rabbit hole we go!
Running running running... more and more and more...
It's easier to focus on running and working, lets avoid the reality of the shittest facets, places and deep dank dark crevices of my mind. So as my mind slipped into this oblivion, I began my fade away.

September 2019 - Maybe I had been contemplating the Eating Disorder issue for quite some time.
Or maybe I hadn't?
Maybe it was a nice little distraction, a little escape to regain some control, or simply the fond embrace of familiar beast?
You know it's an issue, I knew it was an issue, I had been diagnosed EDNOS in 2015 - So I had awareness, and I was familiar with its motives, I loved it at the same time as acutely hating it and never really thought that it was ever quite that bad...
"I'm not sick enough..."
such a common mode of thinking for ED sufferers.
But let me put it this way - I was 28 and my GP wanted me to rush to emergency because she was afraid that I might go home, and have a heart attack. ... WHAT THE FCK?!
Words were stripped from my throat, my mind was blank, my soul and spirit dampened and my emotions numb. Put it this way my ED had been kicking my ass for years, but I was negligent and didn't think I was sick enough to deserve help let alone recovery and a life without the voice.
I had accumulated so many issues, that the amount of vitals out of whack (what is that?) I couldn't even count on one hand. I still have a hard time putting myself and Anorexia Nervosa in the same sentence, as my distorted brain doesn't allow me to see the dire reality of this at times.
And too oft we revere 'skinny' and 'diet culture' but honestly the effects can be more rapidly catastrophic than those caused by the reverse effects of obesity - there is a generic poor understanding of what it means to have the diagnosis of Anorexia Nervosa.
So from September 18th through to the 22nd of October I was in hospital, firstly in the emergency department and then as inpatient in a treatment facility.
All and any of my social liberties were taken away, my rights, my freedom, I was cold-turkeyed on running... and I was hurting physically, mentally, and emotionally. My spirit and ego were absolutely decimated.
Running had far surpassed any form of health benefit for me, and had become an addiction and a compulsion.
My hips seized, my muscles cramped and I'd somehow hobbled along with stress fractures in my feet for some time without feeling the pain.
My heart beat out of my chest, I was lightheaded and faint, I was cold, my skin hair and nails were broken and brittle and so fucking dry, I had dropped to a low weight and above all else the first ten days were a cognitive blur.
I was hardly human, and I wasn't living in any capacity that a human should.
I hated myself, and I hated that I hated myself.
All the values I thought I had and hold dear, I wasn't living by...
I was a walking contradiction - on the premise of valuing independence and freedom, yet not allowing myself to be free of this demon.
Coupled with weight restoration, the heightened anxiety and being treated like a petulant child, I had a terrible anniversary during my stay in hospital.
Ten years on, since my sexual assault and surrounded by a group of girls of the same age as when it happened to me, and no way to distract or replace or ease the pain.
I was an utter mess...
Sopping, filthy, petulant mess...
Same moral when I was finally discharged - my body was recovered I was weight restored after putting 10kg back on to reach some fucking BMI of 20, which is deemed healthy, and I was not recovery focused.
I just wanted freedom...
and to escape and avoid facing the real pain of emotional and mental recovery - which should have followed.

November 2019 - began the start of the end. I returned to work and that was a battle, during my tenure in the Perth Office I had to negotiate 5hr of outpatient appointments weekly and commutes into the city.
I'm a shit person, cant even focus...
all I wanted was to walk back into an oblivion of distraction, I don't want to face the music - there was too much pain to process.
Just wanted to keep on keeping on...
During November I also had a trip back to Victoria, this was good and was bad. I was aware of my family treating me differently - keen eyes hawking on my every move. I wanted secrecy, leave me alone... don't highlight my flaws as it only makes my want to restrict even greater. I caught up with a few girlfriends that I hadn't seen in years, and it was fabulous! We had never been in the same state at the same time for a few years and counting.
This trip also highlighted another door that was about to close.
A thought I had been pondering for some time, became alarmingly apparent when I caught up with my friends.
The expectation of a partner is to be equal, and if not equal to promote compromise and balance, and if not, compensate.
I became aware that people don't understand what I had been through, nor could I expect them to, or to understand Eating Disorders in general.
I am not recovery focused, you cannot tell me to 'just eat' or to 'not run' - when they are the things that I think define me and my way of being. It is honestly as daft as saying to a depressed person - 'just snap out of it' or to someone suffering with heightened anxiety to 'just snap out of it'. I felt (and still feel... to this day) so uncomfortable in myself, I'm not ready to face the hard feelings, I don't want to embrace change.
Change is fucking hard.... I JUST WANNA GET BACK TO WORK and dissociate.

December 2019 sparked lots of plans... plans... plans...
Where to live?
How to sever ties with things that no longer served me?
How the fuck do I make adult friends?
What do I do?
How do I get work to accept me?
Am I good enough?
Do I deserve this?
Who am I?
.... seriously, deeply, really....
One of the non-negotiables was a pre-planned trip to Malaysia, staying four nights in the capital of Kuala Lumpur. Bloody loved it, much exploration to be had (solo) - maybe also got bitten by a rabid pack of monkeys alll gooood.... Was wicked with Insomnia, and with One foot out the door, I was becoming open to inklings of possibilities. I was observant to attention. Yet fear.. so much fucking fear.
Do I deserve it?
Am I worth it?
Am I even a good geologist?
Am I even a good friend?
Am I a burden?
A good daughter?
A good partner?
Am I not enough?
Here was my call to action and I was frozen solid.

On the 1st of January 2020 I walked - ok I'm out, falter...
What have I done?
So much ambiguity here, I used to refer to my annoyances in the relationship as 'pink flags' nothing earth-shattering but grievances nonetheless. My 'pink flags' had built up over the past eighteen months and had developed into a form of resentment.
And that feeling didn't sit well with me, and felt unfair to my now ex-boyfriend. I felt like an asshole, here was this easy-going nice guy that had had to put up with both me, and my demon destroyer of all things nice. We had tried compromise to no avail, but it was rigid and wouldn't budge. The alien had moved in and well and truly taken over the household.
But what I look back in hindsight with, is that although my AN did wreak a lot of havoc, my 'pink flags' - laziness, inability to do adventurous things, being spoken down to, sleeping in, lack of assistance with house and garden chores were actually fucking scarlet fucking 'red flags'. I was never going to be able to settle for someone that didn't challenge me or support me in the ways that were necessary - yet instead antagonize me, apparent felt lack of respect and punitive tone meant for control.
I dont expect to be played a martyr, and a comment that really gutted me was that 'I had to come visit you, everyday that I was at home, and you were in hospital'...
Fuck am I an entity or an object?
I finally got full sign-off to return to FIFO work, from both my GP and Psychiatrist. I created my own hoops from thin air and jumped through them. I was meant to provide food logs to my supervisor on site, which was invasive and I hated it... why did I sign up for this? it was even my damn suggestion... what an idiot?! Cast the ED to the limelight and let it sizzle... even completing these tasks felt like a physical and emotional exorcism.
What have I done?
A beast that is fuelled by secrecy is now smack bang in the open for all to see... Nooooooo!
I returned to work and felt empty, there wasn't a sense of belonging for me - time had passed and I had been like a princess locked away in the high-tower of Perth Office for too long. Relationships had been forged and I was still separate, I felt different and out of place. Like I had always in my entire life, I'd never really felt like I fit in or belonged anywhere. Maybe that's why I was always searching?
I was so prone to fight for my social right to operate.  And often felt unheard, undervalued,  and unsupported. And this negative thought bias, followed me around like a horrid stench.
Just let me get back to work, let's revert back to safe coping mechanisms it's time to just do...
So yeah no real place to be,  in my mind or in body, so just be me wherever I am, and that was the best home I could have... for now.
I stayed with a friend for a few weeks as interim, I was welcome but felt unwelcome, I didn't belong. But this was mainly because I don't feel like I ever belong, or are wanted anywhere.
During this crazy time I reacquainted myself with old friends -  and went to a music festival - something which I had enjoyed in the past. A part of me was loving life and I was feeling myself a little more than usual. I started putting effort into connecting with people that made me feel a little more - real and human, and it was great.
But my ED was still there - lurking and waiting.
Ready for the pounce...

In February 2020, well the 24th of January - I finally made it back to site. I felt so at home amongst the stunning beauty of the Pilbara, the red dirt, rolling red hills, lush greenery in places, and the red hot Australian sun. In the new split roster role I felt valued, and had lots of  positive feedback from workers in my ability to be able to train, teach and communicate ideas - which was the purpose of the position. I loved being the bridge, and am all for advocacy, continuity, and collaboration. I'm always for people as much as I am for process - both factual and emotional, a human and empathetic scientist.
Which often held me in good stead, however could cause a world of hurt at the same time.
Finally my Tuesday roster rolled and I got flights and a permanent room - it was all working out. I felt joyous in the fact of knowing that all of my hard work was finally coming to fruition and I was seeing results. I hadn't had these feelings for some time, so I was fucking ecstatic.
Yet I felt so alone... well lonely? As I enjoy being alone - but not lonely and I believe there is a stark difference between those two. Alone Vs Lonely?
I continued to catch up with a few old friends, and dabbled a bit in things that I maybe shouldn't?
Or at least society tells us not to?
Party drugs let's go.
Another music festival.
Minimal sleep... fade....
ED is still very much me, its lurking, the commentary is still a consistent stream in my head. But I had some positives to hold onto, and a hope for the future. A future without the voice, I hate Ana, but she's also me and she's a friend (or has been...). And I'm defensive and attached to the safety and control she provides me.
During February I also started seriously looking at property - pro's and con's listed them out. Mainly it was looking for a share house, somewhere to be for an interim, and I found that in an unlikely way. On a whim, I picked a lower priority (at least in my thought process at the time) house and lady to visit and automatically felt comfortable). We connected instantaneously, and stayed chatting for an extra 45minutes after viewing the room and the house. And I knew straight away I wanted to be here for a little bit to heal. I am forever grateful to Roni, and the connection we had in that moment.
So yeah, the property search was short-lived... I won a house at auction.
Let's just keep moving forwards.
It all was falling into place rapidly, It was scary and full-on.
But I was embracing the exponential change with open arms.
Maybe there was a new love interest at this time too...
Connections were becoming pretty amazing and I was quietly loving it.

March was fucking madness.
The rug was pulled from my under my feet - brutally and swiftly.
My blanket of apparent contentment was stripped... and I was bare, empty, gutten and cruelly shaken to my core.
My work completely blind sighted me and I was issued with a requirement to change my roster back to a Friday-Friday roster, reneging on the split roster agreement that had been discussed on me signing onto permanent employment in January 2019 more than an entire year earlier. It had been a fight for 14 months, and only in the week prior I had finally seen that plan that I had held out for so long for occur.
It was gutting, I was ripped out roots and all...
I cant even describe the hurt I felt.
It was a betrayal in the ultimate way, something that I'd held out for, been overly patient for, been through hell and back to achieve, then achieve and then stripped in the matter of a week?
I don't want to be overdramatic about this, but this was my fixation and it fucking hurt so much. I was catatonic...
It was a huge slap to my face, and I tried so hard not to take it personally, as it was a business requirement... and the business will do what the business wants, in the best interest to that business... but fuck me... was I a pawn?
I had just signed for my mortgage, what should I do?
I was lost and so confused.
My house settlement was on the 13th March- it was stressful to say the least, I was running a marathon in my mind and body every second of every day.
Had to get some furniture and the remainder of my items from the old rental that I shared with my ex, purchase new furniture to fill an empty house, already stressed to my eyeballs with the work changes.
I don't know how I made it through, but I did - pure caffeine and adrenalin.
The heightened stress and anxiety kicked off my extreme focus, rigidity and need for control and deepened my food avoidance - the ED tightened its grip as I was flailing to breath and even function...
My Brothers wedding was on the 21st of March, COVID-19 was becoming a real and apparent threat this week, I didn't know if I would make it back as flights were being cancelled left, right and center. I was on site too, so it wasn't just the singular Perth to Melbourne leg that was my concern.
I couldn't begin imagine the stress, that both Robert and Holly must have been under.
So much uncertainty for all...
but the day/event went off without a hitch. And I was honored to be a part of it and provide a speech in the service. I was proud of my efforts, maybe I should pursue a career in public speaking?
Wish I wasn't so preoccupied with food/exercise to be able to enjoy it more thoroughly.
Fuck you ED get out of my head!
People watching me... leave me alone.
I just want to run, without fear of prosecution...
WHAMMMMM... the resounding thud.
COVID Border closures - made it back with a day and a half to spare - was stressed beyond belief, as ED took over, my insomnia reared its ugly head and I was forced to stay home in an empty house.
No more FIFO.
The door slammed shut...
I didn't want to be, or do, or have anything...
the static in my head was all consuming.
Made it home to a flooded house, yet more shit to deal with....
Fuck me... Relapse.

This isn't even quasi-recovery now...
This is real...

April continued, I was relapsing hard...
So many things I 'should' do. My self-critic and punitive voice is back and loud as fuck, and it hates every fucking inch of me.
I want to hide, I don't want to exist, I just want to disappear.
Please be quiet, leave me alone....
My GP tried to send me back into the Emergency Department on the 22nd April, but there was no way I was spending my birthday in hospital. A follow up phone call on the 24th April, and I dragged myself in against internal dialogue, and against all odds.
It was touch and go, and I was acutely afraid of being formed.
[Being formed, is when your doctor legally forces you into hospital against your will. All rights are taken away, and you require an advocate to speak on your behalf.]

29 and I definitely wasn't feeling fine...
My reality was dark, gloomy, somewhat morbid, and I couldn't shake the deepness of the darkness in my mind.
I was working at home, with a lack of support.
Broken work promises.
Dodgy internet connection.
Inability to focus.
All tasks felt futile.
No hope or joy looking into my career moving forwards
Empty rooms - empty places.
Inability to motivate myself to even get out of bed, brush my teeth or make my bed.
No meetings, no check in, no care?
Not really having any, if at all human contact.
Empty belly - empty soul.
I wasn't just burning the candle at both ends, my life was in flames all around me.
I had no connection, after all the promising signs of earlier on in the year.
Arguing with potential love interest.
Falling out with friends - various.
Estranged from family and friends in Victoria.
So I planned....

This was my note - I shared it online, it got likes but that wasn't my intent.

'There has been many times throughout the last year, when I've been at the edge and turned back.
Thoughts ruminate, the darkness seems endless, and the pain stagnates.
How do you turn back?
What does it take to recover?
When does it stop?
Where do we grow?
Why does it linger?
As I continue, I step in and out of consciousness. Living in a state only fit to survive...
Like a hungry ghost, I always seek more but fail to be filled. The space is one of emptiness and suffering, not truly existence.
Like the soft fluttering wings of a butterfly, it changes shape and metamorphoses. And affects each subsequent reality after that fact.
As one cannot control the future, only the reality of today, and that is the reality that repeats itself until we learn to heal the demon within us... Weakness and vulnerability are the precursors to growth, without failure one cannot truly succeed.'

That was my final plea, I was highly suicidal...
and why I didn't follow through with it I'm unsure.
I'd hit rock bottom and I was hurting so much....
I had completed and signed off on my Legal Will.
And then...
I saw a glimmer....

A momentary glimpse...
of possibility...

In May, I started to assess my options -
I needed a change, and a dramatic one at that...
with work what the fuck do I do now?
I'm still unheard, unappreciated, under valued. How long do I beat my head against a brick wall here?
I started writing, and sieving through the mess in my mind. I started listening to podcasts, found Tara Brach particularly useful.
I re-engaged with my psychiatrist and psychologist and began to try and reframe my thinking. Practicing mindfulness and gratitude.
I signed up for a course on 'From Surviving to Thriving'.
I disengaged from my outpatient treatment at the Swan Centre, as I wasn't getting therapeutic value from it in any means.
I broke and made amends with my parents, and I apologized. Not just for me or my ED, but just because there were things that I felt like I need to get off my chest, as well as letting them know that I loved them and I valued them, despite the distance. I practiced transactional communication, and it was working.
I felt connected again, and I may have dabbled in things that I shouldn't, but I felt so much better as a result.
I actually cried one weekend, and I think it was legitimate. It was an experience unlike I've ever felt before - it came out of the blue, and I felt a release in my throat and neck and warmth around my eyes. And I couldn't stop it? Nor did I really want to? It was strange to feel somewhat connected to myself? Think I'd become so used to feeling detached? I felt like I belonged in my body? and I was ok with my body rather than avoidant? I felt sensations unlike I have ever before?
I was Alone but not Lonely?
And had an odd sense of calmness through the COVID storm that was still enduring...
How was it that now, that everyone was feeling and experiencing my normality of uncertainty, and of consistent push/pulls?
It brought on another strange connectedness in me, that I've never felt before... Everyone was finally understanding the importance of mental health and taking the conversations seriously for the first time ever, even those not directly affected my mental health issues were feeling it.
And I found comfort in this...

I began starting to think something was wrong with me? Maybe there always had been? I was all over the shop...
I kept on revisiting items/people/ events from the past.
And wondering where I had fucked up? Where had I gone wrong?
I had four job interviews in one week 😣, after only applying for six, but still felt limited by myself and my health. And also had major doubts of whether or not my company had actually been fair to me and that I should stay?  
I struggled with fraudulence and fear of failure?
Imposter Syndrome to a tee, Google that shit right now!
But what about my professional development? Just a fucking rig geo?
Sick of being slapped in the face, with my mental health holding me hostage, and companies using it against me as a shield. There is nothing coherently wrong with me, so don't cotton wool it and use it against me.
I know my capabilities, but they made me question myself more than I already did...
And again feelings of resentment bubbled. I fucking hate resentment...
When all accounts and how I felt in myself was screaming at me to leave and run...
I started looking at my limiting beliefs and I tried to decipher them, and I couldn't stop writing. Thought it may be good for dissociation to write the ED limiting beliefs too,  as a separate exercise. And it proved useful.

And up and down, round and round, in my head about wanting be alone vs feeling lonely? Which led to a perceived standoffish-ness. And then when I actually talked to people I felt better. I found myself being triggered by lots of things, and practiced mindfulness and I became the watcher....
what was the reaction I was giving to externals outside of my control?
and why?
what emotions did it bring up in me?
I ended up in the Emergency Department again, with a biphasic heart rhythm from hypokalemia. I've honestly learnt more about our specialized our bodies are and far too much about physiology....
just break the habit Sarah...
staaap it!
I kept on taking risks, I wanted to breakdown barriers, and fuck off all the walls to my being.
I wanted so desperately to be free from the castle I've built for my mind. My body hurt, I'm dying, actually cannibalizing my body...
I don't wanna do this anymore.
What sadist would?

I started setting boundaries and learning what was acceptable and not. What I would allow into my life and my sphere and what I would not. I dabbled in a range of alternatives including a Reiki healing - oddities and shifts, I am a scientist by nature so was intrinsically skeptical. But there were some things that were strangely accurate and the healer would have not otherwise known, especially to that degree of accuracy.
I visited a Naturopath - and learnt about Pyluria and how damn important Magnesium is for general wellbeing.
I trialed for the last time to catch up with some people that I had distanced myself from during isolation, as I was taking risks and challenging myself. Needless to say, it didn't end well and there was hurt and rejection but...
I wanted to feel like I'd done something wrong so to continue to blame myself and my perceived inadequacies as a 'shit fucking person'.
But I finally saw it for what it was, and became to realize that others energy of selfishness and projection of this was not mine, and I could make the choice to take that energy on or not...

I am glad and proud of myself, for  having not withdrawn again or swan dived or the like...  Because I'm continuing going against my norm and that's ok - as afraid as I am of it. I was finally getting somewhere, it hurt, its hard, and it was continuously challenging, and still is.
But I have continued to keep doing it (whatever it is)- against my entire being telling me not to.

June squared up, and I accepted a new position with a new company, so things were definitely beginning to look up. I made it down to the last three for a Resource Geology  role for a company in Burkina Faso, but was beaten out by a more 'experienced' Geologist - which is ok as I was under the level of experience that they were asking for. So I took it as a major compliment to have even made it that far.... Maybe I am good at what I do after all?
Maybe I am a good geologist?
Only onwards and upwards from here....
Did a little Pros and Cons matrix for the job offer  and most of the Cons could actually be made into Pros if I delved deep enough. All cons were still much better than remaining in my stagnant role, which ED continuously berated me for - in that role was all I deserved...
I didnt deserve anymore...
I started finalizing projects and tying off loose ends in my role.
I had some run-ins, maybe I have a crazy neighbor?
the joys of home ownership...
One weekend was particularly bad, I was seething and ropeable and every damn atom in me wanted to go for a run...
But I fought and didn't
And just laid down on the carpet.
Sinking into the earth.
Feeling my chest rise and fall from breathing
Its good, my energy was shifting....
I still don't know what I'm doing  but I'm doing it.
And challenging my every thought and action.

May have had another Emergency Department trip again in June - however this time was different, this time I marched myself in willingly? Waaaaaht?
Who is this Unicorn?
And what have you done with Sarah?
But a light at the end of the tunnel...
I was accepting change.
I was beginning to accept myself.
And not just accepting, but actually doing.
I was living....?
After the depths of darkness, and breakdown, there is always a breakthrough.
And here was mine - real connections, creation of boundaries, go inwards, and heal....

Grand work coronavirus - you did good buddy!

I began to reconnect with old friends, I had a new job (better pay, no more FIFO, higher responsibility) in which I felt valued, I had left a job that held me hostage by my own mental illness (yes, I'm DSM-5, I'm no longer talking just mental health).
Even though at the close I experienced the worst gaslighting ever by a colleague hanging me out to dry, airing every inch of my insecurities, and berating me publicly via a group email.
This really sealed the deal...
I honestly didn't know where to start with this, as that company  appeared to be continually retraumatizing me and allowing myself and others to as well... Comments were made that 'people think that I think that I am better than people', and that kept on ruminating on me, like the 'intimidating' comments from 2019. And I couldn't stop it...
It was too far removed from my reality.
It was the expectation of me that I was to finish projects, however now because of the emails sent by the gaslighter, I was unable. I was constantly crashing into brick walls.
I was trapped and felt alone.
I didn't belong here...
It was the cumulation of  the entirety of the two and a half months of me, seeking direction, inclusion, support and answers. To which I've received none, or nil responses. So again I was played with the push-pull catch 22 of finish projects, but you cant. How did that go?
I was unable to produce... which is no fault of mine.
But I took it inwards, and took it personally... and it triggered my inner critic so much.
I did feel like I wasn't good enough
I felt like an imposter or fraud
and I felt like a failure...
As I all I really wanted to do was to tie off loose ends and walk out with my head held high, but the reality is that I couldn't - because I wasn't supported or enabled to be able to do so.
It was tricky situation to be in and I hated it.
But I gave beyond my means, I went above and beyond, I lived their company values and I left.
Still with my head held high
because I knew that I did the best that I could, and I had nothing more left to give...
Bye Felicia...

I finally was able to with restrictions easing, celebrate a belated housewarming, my birthday and the new job with friends at my house. Proper fucking adulting!
I do have lots to be proud of
I have shown myself great Vulnerability Courage  and Resilience.

This past 365 days has taught me lots of things, and I'd never be able to do it justice with words alone.
Its funny how when your energy shifts, that people/events/places are reattracted or attracted to you.

I have many things still to work on, but I have hope for the future, and a life worth living to look forwards to :)

I intend on addressing:
- Love-hate relationship with my ED
- Blurred sense of self - need to go inwards
- Prisoner of my own mind - how to be more vulnerable?
- Attachment - security? Avoidance - how to really connect?
- Trauma bonds perpetuate - how to I challenge these?
- Fear is something worth being challenged.
- Growth comes from within. Listen to the inner voice
- Shifts in energy. Be mindful of these changes.
- Ways of being are not easily altered. Challenge myself.
- Effective boundary setting and transactional communication

A toast to the 365 days that broke me, but also built me!
Please sir, can I have some more...