Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Learning to live again

It has been a while and the new medication continues to bring changes to my life. I realized in the last few weeks that I am learning to live again and it isn't always an easy thing. I literally had everything ripped out from under me. I was so exhausted all the time that I had great difficulty keeping appointments (my first priority) and any kind of schedule was out of the question. Simple things like showering were non-existent. I did it when I physically could, but showers were maybe once or twice a month unless I had an aide to help me. I remember being in tears because this type A personality wasn't used to not getting things done. Coming to terms with this fact was not only very hard, but very heartbreaking and it took away a lot of my self-esteem.

I have been struggling with learning to live again. After being bedridden for 10 years, in a wheelchair, and feeling totally humiliated because this body wouldn't do what I wanted it to do, I guess I gave up, thinking things would never get better. I was tired of trying a new medication, feeling the hope if I felt a bit better, only to have it dashed after a few months. I have spent a good part of the past year waiting for the inevitable crash that always came. But it hasn't.

I was stuck between the old way and a new way and I finally realized that I needed to give myself permission to move forward. The routines, which I gave up on and came to hate, are now beginning to be a part of my life again. I still remember the devastation that not being able to perform simple routines brought me, and I am trying to heal from that and move forward. I am being cautiously optimistic now, but it feels good.

My knitting has also changed. Hand knitting kept me going for all those years. It made me feel productive, like I could still contribute to society even if it was in a small way. Now I have been spending every night at my knitting machines, enjoying them like I never have before. I put on an audio book and just knit away. My concentration has definitely improved and I am loving it. Here is a sock that I have been refining for the standard gauge knitting machine.
machine knit sock with Eye of Partridge heel and shaped arch 
I had abandoned my knitting needles for the past six months. They brought back too many bad memories. I hadn't realized how sick I was until now and I now know why my children are angry with me. The severe sleep deprivation made me prone to emotional outbursts. I couldn't remember conversations that we had had that morning. And I couldn't be counted on to follow through on things, even though I wanted to. Fifteen years of this is enough to drive anyone to their limit. I existed, but I didn't live.

So in an attempt to get my needles clicking again, I pulled out the yarn and pattern for Round Trip, from Knitters72. I have wanted to make this for a long time and actually started it once but it ended up languishing like so many of my knitting attempts.I couldn't follow through and finish an item and ended up just giving up. But I am enjoying working on this now and think that I will be able to actually finish it. What a change for me!