Milestones – Big and Small

For many years, I have wanted to set aside time, and more importantly energy, for making doll clothing. Since 2020 seems to be a year of change, I thought I would add positive change to the sea of crazy changes this year has brought.

Inspired by a group of costumers on YouTube and Instagram (#historicalhalloween2020) but not wanting to make a costume for myself, I decided to use this inspiration to make a doll costume.

All of this was well and good, but then I decided to take the big plunge and actually talk on video.

Anyone who understands how anxiety complicates regular daily life will understand what a huge challenge I undertook. A keyboard is my friend, but a camera causes all kinds of stress.

Years ago, actually two decades ago this year, I began to understand why I shied away from the idea of being photographed. I had not had issues with the process while in my youth, but things began to change for me as I neared my 30th birthday. Aging was not what concerned me – pain, or more to the point, the photographic record of my pain, concerned me. Despite reassurances from my family, by the time I reached my 40th birthday, I really struggled with sharing any photographs taken of me.

Now as I move past the mid-century mark of my life, I want to do more than just hide the pain. I want to push back against what pain can steal away. I have been doing much better managing life and pain these last 10 years. Management is the important concept since I can manage my health, but I cannot regain the health of my youth (a youth where I was unaware that my pain was not a common thing).

So with my goal of regaining what can be regained, I took the plunge and made a video with me speaking to the camera.

Anxiety was a thick cloud as I filmed myself and then worked with the footage. Even as I regained steady ground, the underlying energy that anxiety causes me would not dissipate. Fortunately the learning curve of video editing with voice-over commentary was steep and I had many, many, hours of work to keep my mind busy. When I was able to finally take to my bed, I was able to sleep.

With fresh eyes, and a bit of rest, I have now uploaded my first “talkie”*

As I was reviewing this before posting it, I was rendered speechless when I comprehended that September is now upon us. In just a few days time, I will pass the 20 year mark on the spine injury that derailed me from the life I thought I would have, and set me on the course to the life I would come to appreciate as being the better one. I did not set out to mark this milestone with a video about making doll clothing, but as I reflect on the last 20 years, it seems rather fitting.

Life gives us challenges, it is up to use to make them into milestones rather than barriers.

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*In the days when silent films reigned supreme, the first talking films were known as talkies.

Saith Me… Exhaustion

First I laughed so hard it hurt,

Then later I cried the tears of healing,

Finally, I slept.

Saith Me… Lumps and Bumps and Even Patches

Handspun yarn is much like life. The beauty is found in the lumps and bumps as well as in the smooth sections.

 

Spinning and knitting in small scale can be a fun way to try out new ideas. Working with small gauge needles when the hands no longer cooperate all the time can be a challenge, but I am learning to embrace that challenge. The speed and dexterity of my youth may be long gone, but patience and determination have become my companions.

Baby Sweater - Hooded02

Doll Sweaters 02

Saith Me… Treading Water

In the journey of life, standing still is often the first action in a backward slide. However when we change the metaphor from walking to swimming, we find that there is a wonderful way to indicate a need to pause without losing ground – treading water. Unlike with the notion of standing still, treading water requires effort. Sometimes in our quest for self-improvement we neglect to embrace the place we have reached, and we forget to fully appreciate the waters that support our efforts. Treading water provides us with the opportunity to pause and take in the surroundings; to enjoy the pond they are currently in before seeking the next one.

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Stumbling

In our pursuit for excellence, let’s never forget that we are already excellent. We are not starting from a place of failure, but rather from the exulted place from which our diligence and charitable natures has brought us thus far. Yes, we may stumble, and that stumble may make us feel low, but a stumble in itself does not make us lose ground. Rather the stumble reminds us of where we are on our journey. A stumble reminds us to take in our surroundings and reaffirm where we want to be and where we want to go.

During our journey, well-meaning people may only focus on where we need to go and minimize the importance of from where we have come. They will tell us not to dwell on the past and will tell us that we are weak for weeping. We should not wallow in frustration, disappointment, or pain, but we should always remember the struggle of our journey. It is when we remember from whence we came that we can truly celebrate where we are and where we are going.

Stumbling

 

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Saith Me… Embrace the Hills

Many years ago a friend gave me some advice. He said that rather than dreading the hills I should embrace them. So after lacing on my running shoes, I began a chant. “I love hills, I love hills…”

Learning to love hills, or at least telling myself that I loved hills, greatly benefited me during my years of running. For some odd reason, I always ended up living in an area dominated by undulating terrain.

Hills come in all forms, and life’s undulating terrain challenge even the most fit among us. Sometimes the only thing that stands between success and failure is the mental chant, “I love hills.”

Hills are never fun, no matter what we tell ourselves. They require determination and perseverance. Sometimes they require great sacrifice and can even cause great pain. However, as we scale a hill, we become stronger, and when we stand at the summit, we become sure in the knowledge of our newly gained strength.

 

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FYI: I cannot view, nor do I endorse any of the ads that are shown on my blog.

Fiber Arts – It is Therapy

What other kind of therapy produces a final product in addition to providing health benefits?

What other therapy can be shared so readily with others without stigma or a doctor’s pre-activity approval?

So in a way, we are not only on the receiving end of therapeutic treatment but we are also becoming the therapist!

 

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FYI: I cannot view, nor do I endorse any of the ads that are shown on my blog.