Sunday, July 31, 2016

Yarn Journey

Three and a half years ago I picked up a crochet hook and a crochet thread at Michael's, sat in the car, and slip stitched a miniature scarf. Every time I reached the end I dropped a stitch. Sometimes I forgot which direction I was going in and ended up crocheting on the wrong sides. And, as it turns out I did it backwards.

Yarn was a commodity back then. No one I knew really wore handmade knitwear. My grandmother and mother only used crochet thread. But, I tried it one summer day. I picked up some Red Heart, the people's yarn, and attempted my second slip stitched scarf. And my third.

I was fascinated. There's a huge chasm in my timeline between starting to crochet and now as Summer/Fall of 2013 ended up being difficult for me. I began going to church, I began having major complications with my PCOS. I ended up doing something I had never done before in my entire life as living as an atheist.

I asked God what he wanted me to do.

The answer was instant: FLOURISH.

The next weekend I made my first two color ruffle for Pentecost and the cycle of buying yarn, receiving donation yarn, making scarves, making crochet items to sell began. A lot has happened since I began crocheting and I still love it as much as I did that first day. I can't wait to see what I end up crocheting next.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Working Pains

I could totally sit down very still for 8 to 10 hours straight to crochet. I did do it before, for design. But that was more like 12 to 14 hours straight of design. Design was painful. No one really explains that the majority of the work is one hand running around the keyboard inputting every shortcut imaginable and the other is swiveling a mouse back and forth over the desk. Or the pen and tablet combination. Which is still taxing, yet so much easier.

With crochet...there are three ways I can hold my hook. I can technically crochet normal, backwards, upside down and wrong-side down. I can create stitches at speeds of 100 stitches per ten minutes. Roughly translates to a big scarf in four hours. Give or take a few, I’m not a ninja crocheter anyhow.

Lately though, I’ve noticed that extensive periods of crochet do create aches and pains in my wrists, the bottom of my palms, and even my fingers. On both hands. So one day someone passed around a magnesium lotion that once applied to your hands would help with joint pain. Didn’t help so I went ‘shopping’ around the store to look for other medicated ointments and lotions and I found something cool.

I found a very inexpensive tube marketed as “arthritis pain relief,” that listed mint or spearmint or something related as the ingredients in it. I didn’t buy it. I went home and applied some minty essential oils to my hands, and shoulders, and elbows...I was very refreshing that evening. The pain didn’t magically disappear, and I can’t say that the essential oil cured the ache.

But…

...revolutionary thought of the day. If I just took breaks in between crocheting and relaxed my arms and hands after being locked up in one position for so long. And maybe did some stretches and jogged my cardiovascular system a bit..hey my hands would hurt less. It wouldn’t hurt myself to smell minty either with some essential oils. I’m still on the fence about them. We’ll write more about them at another point.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

I'm going to be political

I've blogged a bit about adopting the term transgender, how it's made me uncomfortable, and mostly how I'm not ready to make that change.

So I'm going to touch on that subject one more time. I had a lot of time to think of this. I've followed many people on social networks to see how they transitioned. I reflected a lot on the possibility of transphobia and other roadblocks.

I prayed a lot.

Then I didn’t think of it too much. I put the thought away until it came back to me several weeks later. Usually when thoughts come back on their own this way, it’s because they resolved themselves.

When you break down a person and pick apart all their characteristics, behaviors, sexualities, identities, and roles… it’s a nightmare. Having so many definitions and identifications helps a lot for political reasons. For marketing purposes, school applications, job applications...they could completely polarize and close doors! That’s a hard fact to accept.

But I’m going to do it now and forever hold my peace.

I’m a Latino, genderqueer, bisexual poet who crochets and is interested in treating everyone and everything like the meaningful and valuable object, person, animal, metaphysical being that they are. I’m going to teach crochet, writing, and how to respect everyone because everyone deserves to exist.