Today is another day of firsts. This would have been my father's birthday. He loved celebrating birthdays as it usually brought all his favourite people together. I believe Dad loved celebrating his birthday because it reminded him that he lived one more year in-spite of MS. It reminded him that even living in a wheelchair, his life rolled along quite nicely. Oh, it wasn't perfect but as he would often say... no life is.
A friend told me when he died that she was going to miss seeing him rolling down the street to the mall wearing his cap. From his daily coffee meet-ups with the 'old codgers club' to his dinner dates with his best gal, he was always recognized. It wasn't just because he rolled through the neighbourhood but because he also never left the house without wearing a cap. He loved the dapper look a good cap gave him but he was also "hair challenged" so the cap helped to protect this head from sunburn or wind chills. When I took up knitting, I made an alpaca ear-flap toque that he only wore when it was colder than -10 otherwise it was far too hot for him. He did love that soft 'paca toque.
Today, through tears... I will celebrate the memories of past parties. Laughing with him when he was given a balloon party hat for his 75th birthday. Teasing him about that ugly straw hat he always wore in the summer. And I'll finish that toque I started making for him... to be given away to a shelter. I couldn't bring myself to finish it after he died but now, I can't think of a better way to honour the day then by giving away his gift to another who needs it... it's something he would've done anyways.
Happy Birthday, Dad.
Monday, 4 April 2016
I have always been plagued with self-doubt. Lately, it's all I can do to go to work and wonder what changes may occur that I just may not be able to deal with. Link that with General Anxiety Disorder and it's a recipe for disaster. Here's the irony to changes tho... chopped all my hair off and letting the "arctic highlights" shine bright and nary a moment of doubt was in play. It was freeing.
It's all about what I can control and I understand that. I can control my hair but I can't control changes at work. I can control who I spend personal time with and how we help each other be better people. I'm not here to solely make others look good to other people. I don't expect others to make me look... that's totally up to my self-doubting self. While my family and friends may be a reflection of me I have no expectations that what they do reflects on me or I on them.
There is the crux of my self-doubt and anxiety... I spend too much time worrying about what I'm incapable of and not enough on what I've been able to accomplish on my own two bunioned feet. I worry about what others think of me when I'm in full panic mode and unable to manage even the simplest of things... that what happens to me reflects badly on those around me. All I want to do then is hide and yes, knit... something I have full control over.
Every project I finish... every sock that that fits... every shawl that drapes... I am one stitch closer to a better self. Forgiving myself isn't easy but if I can rip back an old unfinished project from hell and start something new... I need to be able to allow myself to also let go and start anew. While I'm great at giving positive talk to others... positive self talk is not my forte. When I'm in high anxiety mode being positive is the furthest from my mind. I guess one good thing is I recognize this. Isn't that what they say... recognizing the problem is the first step to healing?
I have a lot of steps to go... still... and lots of knitting to help get me there. In the mean time... I'll hang onto the big step of letting my true hair shine through... and to help get through the dark, I'll stash bust in the yarn room and look for colours to help me shine.
Monday, 29 February 2016
Monday, 8 February 2016
Wednesday, 27 January 2016
Friday, 8 January 2016
I'm hoping 2016 will be sweet since 2015 was a year I'm more than happy to say goodbye to. Between the ex-boss that resulted in stress leave from work, managing the returned panic attacks, holding my father's hand while he was in palliative care... and so much more... 2015, well, it wasn't nice knowing you.
Without my father to talk to, a lot of things built up far more that it normally would have. Strange how that happens. When I'd return from a work trip, he'd be the first person I'd call to tell him all about it. My last week long work trip in December was very stressful and I missed my father even more. He would have talked me down, tell me "all is ok, dear" and then would ask what I was knitting while sitting in those "swanky hotel rooms us government folk got"... oh, he was a funny guy!
My biggest cheerleader is no longer there for me and my un-balanced core needs to hear "all is ok, dear" even more. So this year will be a year of looking to hear those words in different ways. A year of simplifying things in order the clear the clutter... oh, don't worry... I'm not going all granola or anything. While I research and learn and write... it's all to find my centre again.
Of course, knitting will be involved. I believe that art, in all it's many forms, is healing. Knitting has been my healer and carried me in the past and it will again. The simplifying begins with knitting projects that only my stash will support (unless I'm travelling cuz souvenir yarn doesn't count). Good thing I have a large stash.
While I go through 2016... I will go through it remembering my father's big Irish heart and twinkly blue eyes. While he may no longer be here... my new tat is as my reminder that he is always with me. The knit blue celtic-knot heart with a sprig of Irish Heather is on my right arm so that when I knit, or do anything else, I see it... my reminder that all will be ok.
Last year was a year of heartbreaking tears... this year? Healing tears of joy... and when I begin to doubt, all I need to do is touch my Blue Heart... breathe deep and say to myself, all will be ok.
Oh, and it was yet another shawl I was knitting in that 'swanky' hotel... yup... one healing tear at a time.