Hello everyone. How is your January going? Traditionally my most difficult month of the year, I have been surprised by how well I'm getting through it. Instead of laying under a mountain of duvets with a never ending supply of Earl Grey tea, I've been able to keep up with everything I had planned - which isn't much because overloading when you're potentially going to be feeling a little fragile is a recipe for disaster. I've been maintaining my running routine and have actually been enjoying the cold evening runs home. Another benefit has been starting yoga on a Monday evening immediately after work - such a fabulous way to begin the week.
The slight downside to anticipating such an awful month is that you become super sensitive to how you are feeling. One aspect that has come into ever sharper focus for me is my ongoing lack of desire to create. Just a year ago you would find me prioritising making a dress or a free motion picture over doing the house work. Ever since finishing up the items for the wedding, I've not reached the third step of the creative ladder, let alone the normal eight or nine that I'm so familiar and much more comfortable with. A missing sewjo is fine - I've been here before and it is inevitable it will happen again but I have been surprised by one particular emotion that has come with all of this.
Guilt. This is becoming the overwhelming feeling I experience when I think about sewing, when I see fabric, or go on social media and see fabulous makes in progress. This feeling is nuanced. I don't feel that I owe anything to the online sewing community - we can all pick and choose how, and to what extent, we want to interact with others. Instead I feel awful that I am not joining in, not sharing because I am not making. I'm now struggling to sit on the sidelines and cheer you all on because it opens the wound of not making a little wider every time I do. I'm avoiding our study where my sewing supplies are kept. The room is in an absolute mess and needs to be tidied but the stab of guilt of looking at my stash and all my scraps sends me dashing for the sofa and the safety of a fiction book.
Interestingly, it isn't true to say that I'm not making. I've made a number of items for others and myself over the past three months, all which had deadlines. Getting round to making them has been challenging but I've enjoyed the short bursts of stitching - the 30-60 minutes I can muster. Guilt raises it head when I struggle to get going and walk away from the table. It's also present when I think about how I want to share these items with you, to commit to the web the blog posts that have been circulating in my head for months, and yet even that seems a step too far.
I have no doubt that this will eventually pass. That I will find myself spending a weekend in the study rolling fabrics and putting patterns away. That I will find myself glued to my machine making all the things because the urge to stitch is overwhelming. In the meantime, I'm trying to keep the pressure off and see if I can nudge myself to a sturdier footing on the third step of the ladder. This post appears to have come from the decision to not force a post. I start a sewing course on Wednesday where the plan is to draft and stitch a jacket that will get me through the changing seasons. There is some gorgeous wool in John Lewis that is calling to be bought with my birthday money and I have some delicious silk from Vietnam that could work for the lining. The plan is there and with the accountability of the course I'm hopeful. Let's see if it works.