Crochet and loss

crochet and grievingI felt compelled to write this post after I received a comment from a reader that really resonated with me. I realized that this was a story I had heard many times, people who have used crochet as a lifeline after suffering a loss. A woman, who bought some of my yarn at a garage sale, started talking to me about the role crochet played in her life and her story actually encouraged me to start Keep reading after the tag!

Warning: this post may be triggering to some!

Crochet to get out of bed

A few years ago I was holding a yard sale. I decided to go through my stash to get rid of some yarn. A Lady came up to the table and started telling me that she crocheted. Of course I am always happy to share my crochet story and when I related to her how much I gained from this craft, she told me about the loss of her son. Her son served in the military and tragically lost his life in Afghanistan. She was traumatized and along with her grief she developed PTSD, panic attacks and a severe depression.

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At her lowest, she said, she had found it impossible to get out of bed and function. That’s when she started to crochet. The repetitive movement, the pretty colors of the yarn and the joy of finishing a project allowed her mind to take a break from grieving. Sometimes crocheting was the only thing that kept her from staying in bed. Eventually , those worst of days became fewer and fewer and with crochet as a crutch she could start performing daily tasks again.

My Loss

I suffered a miscarriage almost four years ago. My overall outlook on life has always been relentlessly optimistic. I was somehow convinced that nothing bad would happen to me. This (some might say naive) world view came crashing down when we went to hear the baby’s heartbeat for the first time and there wasn’t one.

When I was pregnant with my daughter nothing eventful happened and it was not an easy, but a pretty healthy pregnancy. If I am honest, I did have a bad feeling with this pregnancy, but like I said, I dismissed those thoughts because I refused to consider bad things happening to me. We had picked out names, nursery colors and I had just told all my friends and family about being pregnant. I think telling everyone about the loss might have been the hardest part for me and it took me almost a week to call my family.

crochet and grieving

Crochet as a tool in your self care tool box

I feel very lucky that I had so much support. I am also very blessed because I now have a sweet rainbow baby boy. There are still days, though,  when my heart gets very heavy and I hug my loved ones extra tight. There is one more thing, though, that I feel very lucky about. The fact that I crocheted. While I was grieving I could not bare to keep my hands still. When my hands were still, my mind was racing and I couldn’t stop the tears. I was so glad when I had my hook to hold onto! I crocheted up a storm and I am certain that this distraction sped up my healing process. It feels like crocheting is a simple, but powerful, tool to have in your self care tool box and it really helped me find myself again after my loss.

Further Reading

If you are interested in further reading, I recommend this wonderful book from my favorite crochet blogger, Kathryn Vercillo. The book is called Crochet Saved My Life and is about the healing qualities of crocheting during depression and when dealing with chronic illness. Please be sure to visit her blog as well! It is filled with stories from people who crochet to keep happy!

crochet and grieving

Read more about crochet and healing and crochet and happiness here and let me know if you have anything to add in the comments!


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