Saturday, July 18, 2015

My Black Dog Wears Crochet

I'm a woman, a wife, a mother, a sister, a daughter, a mental health peer support worker, an author, a student and a friend. I also live with depression and anxiety and my life is more brilliant by this diagnosis. I am passionate about mental health, writing, crochet and showing people that it is okay to not be okay.

When the darkness first came into my life I felt alone, afraid, hopeless. I  cannot tell you when it arrived in all its pathetic glory. It was just there. It felt alien, a demon from the depths of hell.  My strength, my veracity, my creativity, my beauty, my humour, my empathy, my life decayed to a wasteful existence. I looked in the mirror where I reflected the object of derision and hate.

The Black Dog fucked with my mind. Created a war with myself.

I was still dealing with the repercussions from the years of infertility. My friend took her life, relationships were fragile, work was a repetitive machine and the world around me felt broken and worthless.  I was exhausted, angry, and struggling to find joy where all the beauty and wonder had left.

I was an empty body coping with the mundane, battling the mind fuckery, waiting for the medication to kick in and praying for the “this too will pass” day to arrive.

Hope seemed redundant.

But I persevered. Somewhere within me was love - my family, my husband, my son were my weapon. I pledged that I would not succumb to the internal inferno of doom.

I prayed for life.

One day during a counselling session as we talked about imagination; I remembered my grandmother’s lace doilies. The intricate nature of each stitch, how I loved to trace the patterns with my fingers. I wondered what she was thinking, feeling when she created them. I had always wanted to learn crochet. That day I walked into the craft shop, bought my first hook and yarn and learned the skill through YouTube videos.
The darkness lifted eventually.
Crochet became my mindfulness strategy, a meditation to help me manage my anxiety and depression.

As my crochet improved and people became interested in my work, I created Lilliputi Crochet & Design. I crochet one of a kind items using sustainable wool hand dyed by indie fibre artisans. I also write my own designs. Because crochet saved my life – I donate my profits to The Black Dog Institute - a leading Australian organisation in the diagnosis, treatment & prevention of mood disorders. Proudly I have been able to make Lilliputi a registered fundraiser.
“Crochet – calms the mind, soothes the soul
and makes the black dog dance in a pretty little dress.”
~ Athena
My first Amigurumi toy I made with acrylic yarn. My Black Dog Wears Crochet.
Free pattern by LittleOwlsHut

What does crochet mean to you?
Do you have your own dark passenger? (and does it wear a pretty dress?)
For information regarding mood disorders: Black Dog Institute
To talk to someone: Lifeline (Aus only)