Wednesday, December 30, 2015
2015 Top 5 Reflections
I've become comfortable in my own skin - It feels silly when I describe it to non-sewers, but sewing has absolutely helped me to be comfortable with my body as it is right now. I've spent my whole life feeling too large, even when I was actually not large (I know that now when I can look at old photos). I used to save fabric or clothing or who knows what else for "when I loose weight". That was most of my life, people. I haven't lost much weight in my life, and considering the crazy events of my last year I certainly didn't help matters (I stress eat, it's just the way it is). Sewing has helped me to fit my clothes to me instead of the other way around. Sewing has really solidified the notion that it doesn't matter what size you are - if your clothes fit you properly, you will look good. Just because I am larger right now then I would prefer doesn't mean that I don't deserve the cute clothing that I long to wear. Sewing has made it possible for me to wear what I want no matter what size I am. Of course there are always self-deprecating moments, but they are far less often with me since I started sewing clothing for myself. Sewing is a huge ego boost - not only do you get to wear the cute clothes, but you get to know that you made it yourself! How cool is that?! Don't get me wrong, I eventually want to loose weight, but not for the "fitting in size __" aspect. I want to get healthier because I deserve it. I'm just not going to beat myself up constantly in the meantime when I have so many other stresses in my life. I use sewing as a personal bolster. All the fun of clothes shopping, none of the judgement.
I can do hard things - A good friend of mine (thanks, Kara!) uses this as her personal motto, and ever since I read that on her blog I find myself using the phrase too. I CAN do hard things. Are they always pleasant? Absolutely not. Do I grow from them and appreciate the skills I develop later? Most definitely. I've had to do more truly hard things this year than most of my other years combined. I know I probably feel that way because this year is more fresh in my mind, but I think I could even write down the main difficulties of my life and this year would carry the bulk. This year doesn't end these difficulties, but after a full year of learning a new way to live my life I can deal with the problems that I face head on without avoiding them like I used to. I try to apply this to my life in general as well as to smaller things like my sewing and knitting. I'm more willing to take risks because I know that even if I don't get it exactly right, I will gain experience from it that will contribute to when I try again. Sewing and knitting are great self esteem boosters in this aspect, and I can never recommend them enough. You can do hard things. Don't sell yourself short because something sounds to difficult right now or else it always will be.
Making things doesn't have to be a big song and dance - I used to dream of making things, but then talk myself out of the actual work. I would decide it wasn't worth pulling out the machine/making a mess/not having it fit right/messing up/etc - the list could go on forever. There are always reasons we can concoct as to why we can't do something. This year, I told that voice to shut the heck up and I just made stuff. Knit shirts really helped get me to that point to be honest. Sewing can be just a matter of grabbing something stretchy to sew so you don't have to make a zillion muslins, lol. You don't have to have tons of time or money to make the latest and greatest thing out there. Just use what you have of time and funds to make something that you enjoy and that's all that matters.
Knitting is my yoga - Seriously, those bags and stickers that say "I knit so I don't kill people" ... those are talking about me. I've become that crazy lady who even knits during church, but you know what? I don't care! Knitting keeps me sane. It's amazing how meditative knitting can be. You get to this zen state and you are able to process all kinds of other thoughts while your muscles just do what they know how to do. Knitting is much cheaper than therapy, but it feels close to as good sometimes.
Things don't have to be perfect for me to be happy - Our time has this unfortunate idea that life should be nothing but happy moments. Friends, happy times are great and all, but that level of constant bliss is not sustainable. We have become entirely too dismissive of the term "content". We can be content with our lives no matter what is going on around us. We can choose to enjoy life in each moment, not worry about what already happened or what could happen tomorrow. We can enjoy the small moments and be happy as they come. When they go, that doesn't mean life is terrible. Life is just life. It's entirely our perception of what is going on that affects our happiness. Hard times come, but they will pass. When you stop grasping at the big happy moments and thinking that they are the norm, you will start to see all the small moments of goodness and appreciate them more. This is the piece of the puzzle that no one really could explain to me, and I'm so glad I've finally learned it for myself. Things will change - nothing is the same forever. Enjoy each thing as it comes, because it will never be the same again.
Ok, you've endured my Top 5 lists thus far, so stay tuned for my goals for the coming year next!