It started last November. I needed something to do, something to keep me occupied through endless hours of sitting and waiting.
Mum had tried to teach me to crochet before, but I'd never really got the hang of it. I knit, but crochet somehow seemed...wrong. Where was the other needle? How could something that started as a chain end up as a square? Why are there so many loops?
Suddenly, this time it clicked. It made sense. And so, armed with a pattern for a basic granny square, I chose a few colours and got started.
I didn't have a plan, I just kept making squares. Eventually, I started to put them together in some kind of order. Random seemed like too much hard work, so I settled on a nice, regular, even pattern. And eventually I had a small blanket that kept my lap warm.
Small wasn't really enough. I had big ambitions for this blanket. So I added some more squares and kept going.
And so, 150 squares later - it's finished.
Eight balls (I think) of yarn.
Over 20,000 stitches.
Far more late nights than I care to admit.
Finishing this blanket - finishing anything makes me happy. I love being 'crafty' and I always have some project or other on the go, but it isn't often that I get the sense of completion that I have with this. When I started, I knew what I wanted but I didn't know how to get there. As my piles of squares grew and I started joining them together, I could see my idea emerging and I was so excited to continue. There were times when the chemo messed up my head so much that I couldn't even string two stitches together, but I kept going. There were times when I felt too sick, or too miserable, or was in too much pain to focus on this, but I didn't give up.
For me, this is more than just a simple crocheted blanket. It represents time spent with Mum, learning how to crochet. It represents frustration, perseverance and endurance. It will always remind me of a really horrible time in my life, but the lessons I've learned from this are all good:
Handmade makes me happy.
Learning new skills makes me happy.
Keep going and finish, because that makes me happy too.
Now...off to apply that last lesson to the many half-finished papercrafting items sitting on my shelf!