Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Life's Thread

First, I want to say that I hope all had a merry Christmas if you are so inclined to celebrate. My holiday was memorable, but to say it was merry would not quite be true. I've debated about this post, and thought about it, and even woke up in the middle of the night "writing" it in my sleep. I just can't write more posts about sewing though as if all is well in my life when it simply isn't. So, let's rewind back to my last post.

That post was on December 16. Yep, the dress was almost finished. Actually, I've worked on it a little bit more, and it just needs to be hemmed. Fingers crossed, that will happen tomorrow, and pictures will follow. I'm loving the dress, and can't wait to share it with you. But then December 17 happened. Now, when you think about why a holiday might not be so happy, it seems perfectly acceptable to say that grandpa had a heart attack, or auntie had a stroke, and everyone would be sympathetic and sad. So, why is it so hard to talk about mental illness?

The thread of sewing has passed from my grandmother to mother to me, but I also have the thread of mental illness passed along the generations. Mental illnesses can be just as "inherited" as high cholesterol, some cancers, or blue eyes. And there is a stigma surrounding mental problems that has always bothered me, because somehow it makes me feel that I can't share a very significant part of my life. While I'm thankful that it is not me that I'm referring to, this time the thread struck so very close to my heart, as we had to admit our son to a psychiatric hospital on the 17th.

I won't go into all the details, because they aren't really mine to share. He was discharged 5 days later, and we are all still struggling with finding some answers and how best to help him. He is attending an outpatient program now, but all concerned are not sure that the particular program he is in is really the best fit. And here I thought finding the right college was hard.

Anyway, the focus of this blog will still be sewing and crafty projects, but the occasional update will happen. I think it's important that mental health issues can be discussed, just as we talk about other health issues. But you know, having a crafty sort of hobby can also be very therapeutic. I mentioned my new found hobby of knitting (remember the glowing ball of yarn?). Even more than sewing, knitting in its repetition and hand movement has proven to be extremely relaxing to me. If only I could convince Kyle to give it a try. He has started to play the piano again to help reduce some of his anxiety. (See kids, don't stop your lessons too soon... )

So, prayers and positive thoughts are always appreciated, and I'll find the camera soon and show off my dress and my almost sweater in a day or so!


  1. My thoughts and prayers go out to you


  2. Sending you lots of positive energy.

  3. The fabric of my life is also woven on a warp of mental illness. You have my sympathy.

  4. My thoughts are with you and your family in this challenging time. You have my sympathy.

    Rose in SV

  5. Your family, and especially your son, are in my thoughts for strength and healing. I am glad you were willing and able to share some of your thoughts with us.
    Knitting is so therapeutic! During all of my recent surgeries, I have found it is what I turn to most often. I just finish simple scarves, though. Nothing as ambitious as a sweater!

  6. My heart goes out to you. I do know exactly what you're going through (been there) - if you need a shoulder - mine's there for you.

  7. Bravo for discussing mental illness. There should be no stigma attached to it, and I am so glad your son is getting help. You are in my thoughts.

  8. Oh brave Elle, my heart goes out to you, Kyle and the rest of your family. Denise is right--there should be no stigma or shame, and the more we talk about it, the less there will be. I am praying that God holds you all in the palm of His hand and gives y'all peace, comfort, strength and freedom!

  9. Our family too faces these challenges on a daily basis. I often remind people that mental illness is what you have, not who you are.

    It's a good start that Kyle is playing the piano, it's taken our family quite a bit longer to develop coping strategies for the difficult days and our prayers are with you and your family that you too will find the peace they bring.




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