The Joys (and Downsides) of Crocheting

Courtesy of Invisible Zee

Courtesy of Invisible Zee

Lately I’ve been trying to decide what I can do while I’m laying or sitting around, other than watch Netflix. Even though I’m fatigued, I can only sleep so much, so I end up awake but unable to actually do anything useful. Plus, I’ve developed the habit of always needing to move some part of my body because standing or sitting still 1) makes my pain “louder” since nothing’s distracting me and 2) increases my pain and stiffness. If I’m not moving or doing something, therefore, I usually end up snacking, which provides a repetitive and ongoing action for my hands. My snack of choice for the last several months has been Sour Patch Kids (SPK). And I’m being generous in calling it a snack because it’s just candy and does not fall into any food group. Obviously, eating a bag of SPK a day is unhealthy so I figured I could give my hands something else to do so that I wouldn’t turn to SPK or other snacks. I wanted it to be something constructive and useful but something that wouldn’t tire me out either. So, I decided to learn how to crochet.

And let me tell you, crocheting is absolutely the new love of my life, after God, my husband, and my mother of course! 🙂 I didn’t really expect to enjoy it this much but I’m completely enthralled by it. It gives my hands a useful compulsion to engage in and I can make things that have actual functionality! BUT, I’ve noticed that after a couple of hours of pretty continuous crocheting, the knuckles in my fingers that are closest to my nails and the muscles and joints connecting my thumbs to my palms are pretty sore. And it doesn’t help that, as a beginner, I sometimes make my stitches to tight and that makes it hard to push the hook through. And as someone who’s always held pens and pencils very tightly, I tend to hold the tools and fabric tighter and tighter until eventually even my shoulders have hunched up. I periodically remember to relax and loosen up, but I never fail to tense up again. I’m hoping that once I get better at it, I won’t make it so hard to push the hook through my work, but I don’t know how to retrain myself not to tense up. I’ll have to do some investigating into alternatives and aids, but in the meantime, I’m still in love with crocheting and won’t be giving it up despite the downsides. It’s still better than stuffing my face with SPK and chips!

As for the fatigue, I’m hoping that a rheumatologist can help me with that, but I’m still caught up in trying to get my shoulder issue diagnosed and physical therapy for my knee started. As always, though, I will keep trudging on, with Jehovah God’s help and the support of my family.