Last year 'round this time, I put together a rather lengthy list of knitting (and some crocheting) goals I wanted to accomplish before the end of the year. Now that we've rolled into 2016, I decided to take ten deep breaths and look at said list.
...and I'm not sure if I'm proud of myself or disappointed.
I'll explain why I'm conflicted as if you care: It's not like I didn't accomplish anything, and I'm proud of what I finished. But there was so much more I wanted to do that got pushed to the wayside.
Why? Well, I'm slowly learning that I've been living my life for other people and not myself. Too many of my obligations (like housework) and personal interests (like knitting for family and friends) are easily put on the back burner because I spend a lot of hours answering to others.
Some of that is my fault because I tend to spin a lot of plates when I've got downtime and then have the pleasure of experiencing nervous breakdowns when everything crashes at my feet. The rest is just people maybe expecting too much of me. Which still isn't their faults; it's mine for trying to live up (or down) to others' expectations instead of my own. And as a human (read: I'm not perfect), that's a lot of pressure. It doesn't mean I can't try to be a better person, but it doesn't mean I'm infallible. Nor should I be.
My point being, this isn't the only thing I've disappointed myself with this year, and it served as a reminder that I'm not living my life the way I want to. Of course there are things we'll never escape (like laundry and dishes) and that's fine; that's life. But there are other things I've been so focused on this year that I've forgotten the little things I want to do for myself. Life's short, and I'm reminded of that every day when I receive email updates about a high school friend who's recovering from a coma after a serious car accident (if you're feeling generous, you can read more about that here and donate to her care).
I mean, WTF, people? You read that and have to wonder: how is anything else in life important other than truly living?
It's not like I've been miserable, but I haven't exactly been happy, either. How long should I force myself to exist only for pleasing everyone else?
So yeah, I fell into the insufferable trap of "being busy", and it's wreaked havoc on both my personal and business lives. I don't know what the solution is for that, but whatever it is, I'm done with it this year. I'm ready to take the bull by its horns and do something for me. Because check out what I accomplished (or didn't, as it so happens) when living for other people:
- Conquer drop spindling: I learned how. I'm not very good, so I wouldn't say I conquered it, but I did spend some mad coin on new spindles. Because apparently I'd rather have pretty things than know how to use them.
- Learn counted cross stitch: Nope.
- Add my stash to Ravelry: I got better at adding new stash as I bought it, but there's still a long way to go and I haven't added anything new in awhile. I give this goal a solid "meh".
- Finish one freaking pair of socks: Okay, this one wins. I finished four: Hermione's Everyday Socks, Vanilla Latte Socks the First, Vanilla Latte Socks the Second, and Rose City Rollers.
- Start a "cosy memories blanket": Yup. This happened.
- Finish 3 Designated WIPS: Not worth listing here because I didn't touch any.
But I did make about 40 headbands from the same pattern for my Etsy shop. Don't get me wrong; I've loved selling in my shop, but it leaves little time for me to pursue knitting endeavors I'd rather enjoy. There are only so many grey headbands with detachable flowers one can knit before going insane. Or in my case: more insane.
And I'm sad that it wasn't until last year that I put my knitting skills to the test and ventured into shawls, of which I've made several now and love making more than hats. But prior, I'd been knitting for 20 years and was still what I'd consider a beginner/intermediate knitter. Why? Because I kept knitting the same things. For other people.
Suffice it to say, I'm in a rut.
That said, I'm temporarily shutting down ye olde Etsy shop for awhile in the new year. Just until I've learned to like my hobby again. In the meantime, I'll be typing up a list of attainable goals that I'll force myself to stick to in 2016. Get excited...