Since I started speaking openly and writing about my anxiety and CBT, people, who I both know and don’t, have started asking me about it. After months of covering up how terrible it had got, I’ve become a CBT champion among friends and the online community I’ve carved out for myself. It’s both baffling and an extreme compliment. And something I’m still getting my head around.
I picked up three new sundresses this year, all IBS-belly friendly, and I’ve realised they fall into three categories. The sophisticated boho dream, the cutesy floral number and the voluminous polka dot childlike one. That wasn’t how they were categorised on ASOS but I feel is an accurate description. Hear me out on what they have in common and why I’m living in them.
CBT without doubt, has changed my life. That may sound like a bold claim, but I’m telling you, it has. While I wish I’d done it a long time ago, I do believe everything happens for a reason and this came at the right time for me.
A weird thing has happened over the past three weeks, I’ve completely forgotten about my IBS. It wasn’t until my therapist asked me how it had been at my latest session, that I realised I haven’t had an IBS flare once over the past three weeks. Shit.
This is the first in a new series I want to try. It’s capturing those embarrassing yet hilarious moments I experience with my IBS. Ones I can look back on and go, oh shit, yeah that happened. Maybe you can relate. Maybe you think, christ, she needs to get her life in order. Maybe you just fancy a laugh at my expense. I’ll take any of the above, I’m not fussy.
I’m 5 weeks into CBT for my anxiety and boy, do I feel different. Suddenly I feel more aware of everything. I’m seeing new things. Appreciating new smells and textures. And I’m allowing myself to really embrace my emotions.
We couldn’t go all the way to Snowdonia and not attempt to climb Snowdon. However, I’m not entirely sure I knew what I was letting myself in for. But, sod it, because I bloody well did it. I made it to the top. I mean, I should probably say we made it to the top, because Al was there with me and the main reason I made it.
Do you remember when we had that first heat wave a few weeks ago? Well I do, because I immediately panicked that I didn’t have any dresses to wear that would cover me for work and play. I headed to my saviour, ASOS, and ordered this dress and am now convinced it’s the best thing since sliced sourdough with smashed avo on top. Especially for those of us who spend 90% of their life with a bloated IBS tum.
If you’ve been reading my blog recently you’ll know that my posts have all had a similar theme; IBS battles, heading towards water to heal my mind and reflecting on the things that make me smile. The truth of it all is I’ve been struggling with my anxiety. Really struggling. Over the past 3 weeks I took the decision to do something about it and I wanted to share the truth of it today, in honour of it being Mental Health Awareness Week.
I’ll hold my hands up. I am terrible at confirming and then sticking to plans. In particular with my friends. I know it and they know it but they’re too polite to say anything about it. And it’s all down to how my IBS makes me feel.