The Inpatient Diaries: Day 28

6:00 I am woken up and weighed. It has gone up but I’m still not at a healthy weight yet. Ugh.

6:10 I think about how long I think I’ll be here for, working out the numbers in my head, then go back to sleep.

7:55 I get up, quickly shower and brush my teeth.

8:05 I get my meds.

8:15 Breakfast is cereal rotation so I have muesli then grapefruit juice, toast (with the usual) and then finally a coffee. I miss granola and I still yearn for smoothie bowls.

9:00 I do some of the gem art thing I ordered off Amazon whilst I speak to Mum.

10:00 The physio arrives and we do Tai Chi in the garden. Today we imagine we are strumming a harp as quietly as possible whilst side-lunging left to right. It’s just as odd as last week.

10:35 I speak to the physio 1:1. She prescribes me yoga poses and makes my day by telling me she could tell I do a lot of yoga. She also talks to me about taking up running and advises me to start off by going with Immy so it doesn’t become compulsive. I like that idea.

10:50 I read a message from Barker that says she is so proud of what I’m doing. This makes me so happy and is my motivation for the rest of the day.

11:00 Snack is a penguin biscuit (since when did these get so incredibly TINY), an apple and a tea. I have decided that Timtams beat Penguins any day of the week. My joke is the classic: “what do penguins wear to the beach?” – if you don’t know the punchline you might as well leave now…

11:20 Community meeting. Joy. We talk about how the staff wearing PPE impacts us (again). There’s nothing new. We hate it. We can’t do anything about it.

12:30 For lunch I have tomato soup, a chicken mayo sandwich then grapes. A weird lunch if you ask me but I much prefer having the cold meal in the middle of the day. (For some reason we have hot meals for lunch, apart from Thursdays). The tomato soup is so good. I look forward to having soup when I get home but also having it with toast and butter, instead of plain.

2:00 In DBT group we discuss self-soothing. This is basically where they bring out the sensory box and we all play with fidget spinners for 45 minutes. Not a bad group but it was on Microsoft Teams so there was a lot of time wasted due to “technical difficulties”. Tomorrow they are trialling the first completely remote group where we, alongside day patients, will join the group online. This is probably going to be disastrous but I’m glad they’re doing it because it might mean I’ll be able to start day treatment soon. (That’s what I’m hoping and praying for anyway; I’m going to ask about it on Monday at my CTM).

3:00 I have a countdown on my laptop for my CTM where I’ll ask about day patient. I’m worrying that I’m getting my hopes too high but I’m in desperate need of a short-term goal right now. Only 93 hours left.

3:30 For snack I have 3 custard cremes, an apple and hot strawberry nesquik. Custard cremes would never be my biccy of choice but hey ho.

3:50 I play uno with 7 of the other patients. We suggest we do a whole-ward round but there are a few patients we know wouldn’t want to join…

4:30 I go for my walk. It’s sunny and quite warm.

5:00 I get back to my room and facetime Catherine. We talk about our roadtrip to Edinburgh and I get myself all excited for it.

6:00 Dinner is gross. It’s steak stew with dumplings, mash and green beans. The mash is the usual grey, dry, claggy lump and the “green” beans look like they were last green last year. Green beans are definitely the worst vegetable. I then have an apple and a yoghurt.

6:50 I facetime Mum.

7:10 I watch the start of Bridget Jones’ Diary with another patient. She tells me someone is being discharged tomorrow and I can’t help but feel very jealous. The patient being discharged is not on a recovery admission and is on a different path to me, I tell myself. I try and remember that everyone is here for their own reasons and mine is to GET BETTER. I can’t just leave when it gets too hard. I need to ride this out. I tell the patient I’m with that I’m going to ask about day patient treatment on Monday. This would all be so much easier if we were allowed home leave. Ughhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

8:00 I stand outside in the garden and clap for the NHS whilst on facetime with Mum.

8:15 We watch The Great British Menu.

9:15 For nightsnack I have peanut butter and chocolate spread toast, a banana and a coffee with brown sugar. I wonder what my meal plan will be like when I’m on maintenance. I realise I haven’t maintained a single weight for around 3 years – I have always been losing (or in hospital and gaining). It will be interesting to see what happens and I hope I’ve not completely messed up my metabolism! Who knows, we will have to see.

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