meditative, healing crochet

Standard

Recently I’ve gotten “hooked” on crochet.

I’m a beginner. My mother used to crochet afghans and such until arthritis got the better of her fingers.

My aunt Valerie was a master at crochet. She could crochet anything and any style. I always admired her talent.

Kristin is really super at crochet and one time when we met for coffee she brought along her project. I’ve been thinking about trying it ever since….

Watching my mother and my aunt sit for hours in a calm, almost meditative state while creating something beautiful was almost…..holy to me. I was intrigued but never took the time when I was young to really sit and learn the craft. (Did I just say “when I was young”?)

A while ago I bought a couple of hooks and yarn and when I went home a couple of months ago mom gave me the whole load of her crochet hooks, her crochet days are over…..I feel really sad about that because especially at this time of her life now that dad and auntie are gone I think, after what I’ve been reading about crochet,she would really benefit from it.

I’ve been hooking away ever since doing mostly practice stitches.

While looking for something regarding crochet online I came across some really interesting information about the health benefits of crochet!

Health benefits of crochet?? Yeah…that’s what I said too.

Here is what I found out.

When people crochet they sometimes go into a form of meditation focusing  all of their attention on the task at hand. This helps to let go of stressful thoughts. This meditative state has many health benefits-reduced blood pressure, reduced heart rate and a more relaxed state of mind.

Crocheting is therapeutic. Because of its calming, rhythmic movements, many studies have shown positive results for people suffering from chronic depression, Alzheimer’s disease, dementia and schizophrenia.

It’s also great for keeping your fingers nimble.

I thought…wow. Thinking back though over mother’s and auntie’s lives I can see that was probably true for both of them. Neither one of them had Alzheimer’s, dementia or schizophrenia but I think there was probably some level of depression there from life situations.

Personally I know that since I’ve started to “practice” crochet I’ve certainly experienced mental benefits. It’s definitely been calming for me.

My usual routine before bedtime was to hang on the computer for a while and then go to bed. I noticed that there was more than one night where I had trouble falling asleep because of something I’d read online.

Now, I crochet before going to bed and as soon as my head hits the pillow-I clunk out.

I came across this book: Crochet Saved My Life

I might order it just because I’m so intrigued by this whole thing.

With the winter just around the corner I’m thankful to have crochet now. I’m not a person that gets easily bored because I’m always puttering but -and this is a confession-I find that I get over tired because I can’t sit still.

I’m definitely not a “sitter arounder”.

I can’t just “sit” and rest, and that can be a problem.

I learned that about myself since moving to Japan. I’ve learned quite a few things about myself while living in a semi-hermit state…  but it’s all good.

I noticed that when I sit and crochet, my body rests, my mind becomes calm and I’m still satisfied because I don’t feel like I’ve wasted time.

I’m teaching myself this art with the help of YouTube and Crocheting for Dummies.  I found tons of good videos on YouTube that are fun, clear and have really helped me to create something I didn’t think I could. I used to think this sort of thing was beyond my reach.

I love the yarn colors too! I’m starting out with yarn from the 100 yen shop. It’s ok-probably not the best quality but I’m still in the beginner’s stage so it’s good enough for simple projects.

Later, when I’m a bit more proficient I’d like to make something with Noro Yarn. I saw online that it’s fairly expensive in the states but here it’s a bit more reasonable because it is a Japanese yarn.

It’s absolutely gorgeous yarn! Look at these colors!!

If you’ve always wanted to try crochet but didn’t think you could do it-I encourage you to try it. I never thought I would be able to create anything other than a tangled up mess but while I was visiting the kids I created a beautiful scarf for my daughter! Granted it’s a simple beginner’s scarf but she treasured it because “momma” made it.

I’ve got orders from my grandsons that I’m working on now!

Well..I think this post is done…I’m starting to ramble.

Happy crocheting !

 

 

 

11 responses

  1. Shoot! No pictures of your work! I know, you’re just beginning, but I would like to see the scarf, or the in-progress work…When you’re ready!
    Have a look at Ravelry, here’s a link which will take you to a project page of something I crocheted: http://www.ravelry.com/projects/Idahodimple/lyla
    If you want to go to the home page, click the logo in the upper left.
    They have a lot of patterns encouragement, tutorials…for those who knit and crochet. You may decide to sign up!

    Blessings!

    • Ok…ok..I’ll get a picture form my daughter just for you! :)

      THANKS for the link!!! It’s going on my Pintrest :)

      Can’t wait to see your work!

  2. I love to crochet. I can make washcloths, dishtowels and baby blankets. I haven’t explored much further than that! You’ve inspired me to expand my horizons a bit. I agree with your thoughts about it being a good meditative practice. It definitely helps me and it’s such a joy to give the project away! I have started reading this blog called Attic 24. She is so talented and makes the most beautiful and bright things. I hope it’s okay to leave the link for you!

    http://attic24.typepad.com/weblog/

    • SURE! Links are appreciated!! When I first started all I made were chains! I’m still at the easy stage too…but I don’t care, I’m having fun! Happy Crocheting!

  3. My mom is a constant crafter…she loves crocheting but over the past year has had a problem with carpel tunnel and then broke her arm, ending all crafting for a time…interestingly enough while her arm was healing, so did her carpel tunnel! she should be able to get back to her crocheting and other crafts right away now. :)

    • I hope she’s able to get back to it fully. Now that I started I can imagine how much she must miss it! I’m so hooked on it I’m dragging my crochet around with me now! :)

  4. Thanks for mentioning my new book, Crochet Saved My Life. When I started doing the research for it I had no idea that crochet was beneficial for so many different people in so many ways. I just knew that it had helped me. With each interview I did, I learned more and was so touched by how crafting offers powerful healing in so many forms. I’m so glad to hear that you are crocheting now. I do hope you enjoy the book if you get a chance to read it!

    • Thank YOU so much for writing it and even more for visiting my humble blog! I’m buying your book for sure now! I’m just so amazed at what crochet is doing for me mentally….going thru menopause, moving to a new country and experiencing the “empty nest” all can take a toll. Crochet has been a balm for me…I’m really thankful for this wonderful art!

  5. I love to knit, this was from my Mom. She smoked and knitting occupied her hands for hours on end which meant she couldn’t smoke. I snack to much, sress eater, but when I’m knitting I can’t snack. Another health benifit. Think I’ll look into crochet as well, my Grandma taught me a bit but that was years ago. Thank goodness for the internet.

    • You know….you are right…I snack too…and crochet keeps me away from the chocolate :) Honestly, “ain’t it the truth” the internet has really brought many wonderful things to my life. When you are a part-time hermit like me-it’s great to be able to pop on the “net” and learn new things!!

  6. Put me down as another crocheter! If you do join Ravelry (and I recommend it…great patterns and a way to keep track of your progress and projects) let me know and I’ll “friend” you there. Then you can see my crochet work.

    I’m presently working on a blanket for our couch. It’s a ripple, the pattern is from Attic 24, mentioned above. I had to put it aside for the summer as it was too darn hot to work on! Now it’s cold again, I’m working on it at night.

    I find crocheting is really relaxing too. I love making beautiful and useful things.