Tonight I’m sitting here snuggled under a pile of blankets thinking about how warm it feels.
Some of the blankets I created myself, others were given to me by others.
I’m also thinking about some of the blankets and shawls I’ve created for others. Hoping they are receiving as much comfort or more as intended when I crocheted them.
There has been more illness and hardship than I care to think about in those who are close to me. My father died of cancer when I was only 10, my sister developed breast cancer in her 30’s and survived it twice, not without loss. Two very close friends of mine have passed in the last few years from cancer. And the list goes on.
Cancer is not the only thing that has affected my family and friends, autism, bipolar disorder, ADHD and more are also present.
So, how does crocheted blankets help in all of this?
Mainly by offering comfort, both to me and the person affected.
When I create a blanket or shawl for someone, I’m always thinking about them as I stitch. I won’t work on those projects if I’m in a bad mood, and often I find the process meditative. I also thinking about who the person is and what their spiritual place is, if they have one. These are sometimes symbols I add into the creation, such as using color to signify something important to them.
The three shawls in the photo above are meant to represent, from top to bottom, emotional healing and comfort, grounding, and spiritual comfort. These each went to a family member of one of my friends who passed from cancer. Each one was made with the recipient in mind.
Not only do I give these blankets and shawls to people, but I also sit down and talk to them and explain what went into making them.
I don’t always create for illness. I made a camo afghan for my husband. I started it when he deployed for the first time, but was never able to finish it. He made it through two year long deployments before I finished it. He knew I was working on it, and I think this one was more healing for myself than him. Although, now that it’s done, he loves to cover up with it and I like to think that he can feel a little bit of the love I stitched into it.
Cheesy, yes; but, nonetheless true.
Several years ago I wanted to try out a new stitch I found, and my sixteen year old nephew told me he wanted a pink blanket. He was serious, and I delivered. I think he mainly wanted it just to be different and to stand out. He has rapid cycling, bi polar disorder. For him, I like to think this blanket brought a little comfort to him when his mind wasn’t behaving the way he wanted during his hormonal teen years.
I should call him and see if he still has that blanket.
Recently, my great niece, who has autism, was having a melt down while spending a week here with us for Thanksgiving. I don’t blame her, I miss home when I’m away too and I think the boredom was getting to her. She loves to make her own hand sewn clothing, and she knew I could crochet; so, she had it in her mind that I needed to make her a green sweater coat.
I have no idea how to make a sweater coat out of crocheting. I do blankets and rectangle type projects.
Instead I picked up a skein of green yarn, a standard sized crochet hook and told my 13 year old niece it was time to learn how to crochet.
I’ve never seen anyone pick up crochet as fast as she did. She took off with it. She spent quite a bit of time learning the stitches and when she’d get done practicing she’d call for me and I’d teach her another. It was amazing to spend time bonding with her like that and I taught her a new skill. When she went home I let her have the yarn and hook so she could continue to practice. I hope I’ll see that green sweater coat sometime soon. If anyone can figure it out, she can now that she has the basic skills for it.
Sometimes, I crochet for me. This project above is one that I purchased yarn for years ago and never started, so I picked it up and decided now was as good as any time. I’m sewing this one for no other reason than to give my hands something to do while I have some me time.
That and once the afghans get long enough, they are a great blanket to cover up with on these cold days.
I did mention that I like to snuggle under their warmth, didn’t I?
Do you have a hobby or craft that tells a story? I’d love for you to share it with me in the comments below.