Lately it seems that I can’t focus on anything and feel like I’m spinning myself into an overwhelmed state. My usual tools to keep me from doing this are not helping. It’s a bad cycle, it’s spinning me into a depressed state… and I really don’t want that.
There are so many people struggling with depression, but sometimes it seems you’re the only one. I don’t like to make a big deal about it or get a bunch of sympathy – that kind of attention seems to make things even worse. Plus I know what the cause is, so I have a direction on how to change things. For me, the stress trigger is mostly financial, but things like wars and child hostages and potential US dictatorships are looming strong too.
I’m also working through some past trauma issues that have followed me into the present. This is an area where I need a lot of work. Not only that, but my memory is not so good. It’s almost like it’s hard to trust my own memories – so I don’t have them?… I don’t know. Not being able to remember properly makes everything more difficult. So mostly I work on forgiveness, and I try to be grateful for the unique perspective my life has given me. However, it seems whenever I start feeling good, another memory arises and I have to take time to unpack it.
Worse is remembering something wrong. I was discussing a memorable situation with an old friend who was there and experienced it with me. His memory included a few things that were totally different than I remember. Especially me getting punched in the face by my ex – I really didn’t remember that part, but that was the main part of that particular situation! I can hardly believe I forgot that, but once my old friend described it, it all came back like it happened yesterday!! Now I’m concerned that I may be mis-remembering other incidents.
Moving forward positively
My main tool for depression is actively finding the positive in all things. When I’m down, all I can see are the bad things happening, and I feel all the sadness so deeply. Actively searching for positivity really helps me. Even if it’s a bit induced. Luckily I’m a creative type person and making things helps me with that positivity and good energy. That’s where quilting becomes my therapy!
When you make a full piece of fabric out of lots of itty bitty scraps, there is something very rewarding about it. I love working with color and I’m fortunate to belong to a guild that has free tables and people who give me scrap fabrics. It makes it a challenge to create something that looks good from bits that others no longer want. But that challenge is what keeps me going sometimes! I feel very rewarded when a quilt is finished too – I never used to be able to finish things. There is a certain sense of pride in that, plus I really do like how most of my quilts turn out!
Valuing work properly
As stated above, financial stress is activating all sorts of stuff I don’t want to deal with. I would really like to sell some of my quilts. However, I get so attached to them because they physically embody my emotional journey during the time I made it. I don’t know that I could let go of any of them without feeling a sense of loss – and that’s *before* I start talking about actual financial value. I have put together infographics about what to charge for a handmade quilt. But it’s still hard for me to ask actual value, even at $5/hr. I know the cost of a quilt can be much more than people expect, even if you don’t charge much for your time.
Right now I’m helping my daughter make a baby quilt for her best friend – it’s really cute I’ll show pics as soon as it has been given. Until then, it’s a surprise! I’ve also been working on our business website – learning code and SEO can be exhausting. But I’m happy with the results. Check the Gift Shop for a good holiday sale right now!
Right now, the bag of extra hexies is out and on a design table. I hope to be able to layout a brand new hexie project – something fun! I’m in need of a hand stitching project for the winter. Kind of excited about that potential.
The thing I’m procrastinating on the most is writing about my Chakra Quilts. I really want to do a trunk show about them, but I need to put the words down first… and they are so emotionally heavy for me. It’s hard to do, but I’m sure once I start – I’ll get it done quickly enough. I really want to share them and the process of making them with others who can appreciate them.
What are you working on? Are you staying positive?