Our Self Care Sewing series continues, friends! In case you missed last week’s post, or need a little reminder, you can go read part 1 now to learn about why I invited these four amazing women to visit my blog, why I was so excited when they all said yes, and why I am so grateful we are all getting the chance to learn from them and reflect on our own lives. And of course, so that you do not miss Amber’s words about what sewing means to her.
Today, in part 2, we have Jane, from Buzzmills, and friends, you should know that I think she is really cool, and I wish that I lived close to her so that I could make her be my real life friend. Thank goodness for the internet letting me get to know her (and all of you). My life would honestly not be the same without it. Enough from me! Here she is!
I have to say that I was so touched when Grace asked me if I wanted to guest blog this month, especially since she wanted me to chat about sewing as self care...
She asked me just as I was in the middle of a forced break from my other, more physical form, of self care...running. I am an avid runner, I run marathons, I run most every day. Last month, while venturing out in the predawn rainy hours for a 19 mile training run, I twisted and sprained my ankle pretty badly stepping on an uneven sidewalk...I hurt. Physically, it was pretty excruciating but the pain became manageable after a day or so. Mentally though, taking off 2 weeks of running all together to heal, was far more challenging. Running, it has become obvious to me, is my self care. I run out my frustrations, I run out and clarify ideas, schedules. Running keeps me sane and calm and creative. This became even more evident to me when I wasn't running and was instead healing.
And then, Grace asked me to write about sewing as self care in the midst of this all and at that moment I'm not sure I had necessarily considered sewing part of my self care. I, obviously sew a ton and love to sew, but until now I'm not sure I had actually put much thought into what I get from it other than pretty things.
So, as I opened my package from Maker Mountain Fabrics, as I touched this beautifully soft rayon and unfolded and perused the matcha top pattern I thought about it. It might've been one of the few (or only) times I actually thought about the process in terms of what my mind was getting out of it, not just the pretty thing. The act of sewing, I've found, does a lot of the same things that my running does. It allows me to be introspective, it allows for creative space within me to be made, it allows me to settle in to myself to find answers or to figure things out...
And, sometime in the middle of all of this...I started to run and train again and I took my sewing self care thoughts on the road...Sometimes, when you are amidst marathon training there is a lot of road to fill with thought.
I realized that while much of my sewing is done during the weekday while the house is empty of people I also find myself sneaking a bit of sewing in, maybe only 10 minutes, on the weekends too. Sometimes, when the rest of the family is busy doing their thing I sneak off. Sometimes, I find that I need just that little bit of a moment for something tactile, something brainy, something peaceful, something quiet...just a little sewing "fix" to get me through the day, through a moment. And, as I thought about this I also realized that more often than not the things the rest of the family are doing are so very similar: fixing bikes, drawing, building legos, writing, sculpting something out of whatever supplies can be found...
There are many things that can be considered self care. Here, in our family, it seems that all we need for self care occasionally is a bit of quiet, a bit of time to be inside yourself, and a bit of time for our hands and minds to work together to find a little peace.
Before, I go...let us not forget about the pretty things! The pretty thing that comes at the end of a sewing project, that too is self care! Clothes shopping has never been my favorite thing. I always fretted that things didn't fit right, didn't feel like me, were too expensive...and I quite frankly find it kind of boring. Sewing though, makes me happy. I get pretty, well fitted things that suit me perfectly and instead of trudging around a hot and stuffy mall I simply stay at home and make it myself! That is always a good feeling!
This pretty thing that I made, this beautiful rayon matcha top, this thing makes me happy. It is beautiful to look at, it feels amazing to wear and every time I put it on it reminds me to "be a dreamer".
Yeah, sewing as self care...I get it!
Thank you so, so much Jane, for sharing with us! Leave us a comment, friends, if this resonated with you. Are you also a runner? Do you have any other important hobbies or activities that help you take care of yourself?