If I only had a year to live

This post is inspired by Eve Simmons and Laura Dennison’s new book “How to feel the fear and eat it anyway”. This idea is given in their chapter on sugar. During recovery we can lose motivation so one way to enhance our motivation is to think of reasons to recover. Recovery is beyond tough so we need to see the possibility of a life worth surviving for. By writing a letter about what we would do if we only had one year to live, we think about what matters most to us in the long term. I found this idea particularly inspiring so I decided to do my own letter and share it here. Maybe it will give you some ideas.

Each day, I would start with one of my favourite breakfast options- sweet french toast, a large syrupy stack of pancakes, warm chocolaty pastries or nutty granola. I would get up early and seize the day. Other days I would sleep in, wrapped in layers of super soft blankets. Each day I would make time to read non-fiction, learning everything from new recipes to sciency stuff to feminist issues.  

Also, I’d start a new blog with recipes for people on a limited budget and vegan versions of british baking classics. Not only would I write more, but I would also cook and bake more- adjusting older recipes and making some of my own. With these bakes in hand I would raise money for charities like my local mind, beat and homelessness charities, amongst others. I would write more content for my two blogs and reach out to more people on social media, make more friends. I would meet up with people across the UK, visiting London and Edinburgh again.

For a while now I have wanted to write a book on living your ethics. This would be an accessible, free guide to living more in line with your ethics whatever that means to you. Whether that is being more environmentally conscious, caring more about animals or focusing on self care. Whatever it is, if it is all of the above or somewhere on the way, this guide wouldn’t be about being perfect but working towards living intentionally.

I would go around europe with my sister, trying the vegan eats in France, Germany, Spain, Czech Republic, Poland and other countries in our continent. There I’d get involved with every activity and probably, knowing my sister, get dragged to every art exhibit. Not my thing but if it makes her happy it’s worth it. We’d go to a theme park and try the most thrilling of rides, collecting rubbish ride photos along the way.

Hopefully my favourite bands would be touring so I could see them live. And if My Chemical Romance get back together that would be even better- but we are thinking of possible ideas here. After travelling around europe, I would enroll back in education and study because that’s what I miss. I am a nerd and proud. I enjoy writing essays and learning more. That is something that is important to me.

I’d eat out with friends at every possible cool independent restaurant near me. I’d treat my mum to afternoon tea at a fancy hotel, we both love that sort of thing. Food, especially sweet food, goes down a charm with us. I would spend time with my dad watching back to back comic book based tv shows and movies. We would chat for hours on theories and future plot lines. Later we would play card games like poker, I’d win obviously haha. I haven’t played chess well since I was a kid, so I would work on that.

Every month I would subscribe to a vegan pick and mix company so I’d never be without sweet and sour gummy goodness.

I’d visit and donate to an animal sanctuary. I would take lots of photos for my blog and to keep as memories. I’d cuddle a cow and hold a baby pig… because well I hate to have favourites but pigs are smart and adorable. With what money I had left, I would give to charity.

Don’t know where I am getting all the money for some of these activities but these are certainly ideas of things I want to work on or do. The most important aspect of this is I want to spend quality time with my family and friends. I cannot do this if I am dead. Eating disorders can kill or permanently damage our bodies and as scary as it is, it’s true. Not only are they fatal but they also negatively affect our quality of life. They damage our relationships, deteriorate our self esteem and leave us feeling hopeless. Sure, eating disorders serve a purpose, whether that is to help manage how we feel or feel more in control, however they tend to make things worse in the long run. Or at least from my experience. If you are struggling with an eating disorder please reach out for help. Help can be hard to come by (especially if you aren’t underweight) so get in contact with your doctor and be persistent. If they don’t take you seriously see someone else, explain to them honestly how it affects you. Beat are an amazing charity based in the UK working to help people with eating disorders. They offer a helpline as well as online support groups.

Information on eating disorders:

Beat: https://www.beateatingdisorders.org.uk/

Mind: https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/types-of-mental-health-problems/eating-problems/#.XE3rf8_7QWo

NHS: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/eating-disorders/

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