Chain 1, Bipolar Too

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When I started this blog, I mentioned that I was going through some turbulent times. Issues with work, issues at home, issues…everywhere.  One might even say that I didn’t have issues, I had subscriptions (ba dum bum tssh!). Still, in all this time absolutely nothing has changed.

I’ve spent a lot of energy pushing down all that has been going on in my personal health and it’s landed me in a world of hurt. I have been grasping at straws trying to keep myself balanced and when I first started looking for something to help keep me grounded I reached out for knitting. Surprisingly enough it helped. Now, yet again on the other side of a bad spell knitting or crochet has been the constant that has helped see me through. It sounds weird, I know.

Without getting into too much detail, I am Bipolar.

Just writing it leaves me feeling so vulnerable and exposed. It’s like coming out of a closet of sorts. There’s a stigma that goes along with mental illness and it took me a long time to recognize it as just that…an illness. One that requires treatment and a lot of work to get by. Funny enough that I chose needle crafts as part of mine because I came across this article on crochetconcupiscence.com not long ago:

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Crochet Helps with 3 Phases of Bipolar Disorder: Depression, Hypomania, Mania
August 8, 2012Crochet Health

Bipolar disorder is a condition that is characterized most specifically by wild mood swings (although there are variations in bipolar types). Periods of intense depression are followed by periods of intense euphoria or mania. There are people who use crochet to help them deal with both the depression and the mania of the condition. Crochet can also be used during a state called hypomania, which is a transitory period between “normal” and manic. Most importantly, crochet can be used to help moderate moods, which is a major goal of bipolar treatment…

  • Crochet is a positive activity that stops the cycle of rumination that can cause depression to spiral out of control.
  • Crochet has the potential to build self-esteem. Low self-esteem is a major problem for people with depressive disorders.
  • Crochet can create a sense of connection to others, which is critical to the successful treatment of depression.

READ MORE…

Well shut my mouth wide open! I wasn’t completely in left field after all! I’m pretty sure the same could be said for knitting but I find it amusing that I tend to crochet more than knit these days as apparently there is a reason why. The reason I bothered getting a tad more personal with you all now is this.

When I was hospitalized, crochet was the one thing that kept me going day to day. Since I tend to be introverted, other ladies in similar situations and I started bonding over the hats I was making. Pretty soon another girl started crocheting. Then another. It wasn’t long before there were four of us huddled together and the tension in the room started going down and it became a little easier to smile and sleep at night. I think that says something. I think that if sharing a craft as simple as crochet made a difference with anyone of them like it did with me, it’s worth it. Then it’s not just a hobby is it? It’s a life line.

So thank you all for being open to my story. I’ll be sharing a little more openly going forward. The title of my blog is, after all, The Knitting Neurotic. Gotta make good on the neurotic side and make sure you’re getting your money’s worth.

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11 thoughts on “Chain 1, Bipolar Too

  1. Brave of you to tell us all about what you are dealing with. I am so glad that something that you love to do is also helpful to you. How often does THAT happen? 🙂 Hang in there, you will be able to manage this disease, with help and with crochet and knitting. 🙂

  2. Thanks for sharing this! I’m a counselor and I totally agree — crocheting & knitting are really good for a variety of mental illnesses! I’ve seen it help so many people already. Great post!

  3. Well done YOU! I’m of the same mind…knitting, quilting, simply using my hands in something creative and with a soothing rhythm, has saved me from the depths.
    Blessings,
    Dori

    • Wow! Super glad you reached out! That post really inspired me to continue with my crochet and realize it wasn’t just a silly hobby I was using to run from my issues. It has a valid place in my coping skills and I had never heard anyone validate it until that article. Thank you!

  4. Am way behind on reading all the blogs I follow regularly but this post stood out as I was scanning through all the ones I missed. I’m bipolar too! Knitting and crochet are sometimes my shield to hide behind and at other times a way of connecting with the outside world, but it’s always a good way to proactively manage my mood. It’s taught me to set my own goals and appreciate the little victories instead of being overwhelmed by things that I can’t control. When you find something that helps you must grab it with both hands! 🙂

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