Anxiety · Depression · mental health · mindful stitching · Sewing · slow stitching · Stitching

The power of books, stitch and our minds

‘A Quiet Kind of Thunder’ by Sara Barnard

A young adults book.  The title doesn’t say much before you read it.  The blurb says it’s about two people – one doesn’t talk, one can’t hear.  Reading it as the last book by this author my daughter read was about people trying to kill themselves.

Wow! What an amazing book.  The boy who can’t hear is deaf.  The girl who doesn’t talk is shy and has severe social and generalised anxiety.  What the girl says in the book about her anxiety puts into words how I have felt in social situations and the anxious thoughts in her head could be me – an unsettling (and liberating) feeling reading it in print.

It has taken a long, long time for me to realise having anxiety and depression doesn’t make me this weird, strange, odd person and I’m not the only person who suffers from them.  Reading a book like this when I was a child/young adult would have helped my self confidence and understanding of who I am.  It’s great to know that there is positive change towards mental health issues and children, now and in the future, will benefit from this 🙂

I’ve started volunteering for RT Projects which is a charity which uses art to help people with their mental health.  I’m always saying how much stitching and being creative makes a difference to my anxiety/depression and I’m loving being able to support RT Projects and help make a difference to other people and their mental health.

This week I’ve sewn my mindful stitching fabric.  I was finding it boring going backwards and forwards over the joins of the fabric to hold them together so I concentrated on the noise of the sewing machine, the movement of the needle and the stitches that were being produced; it turned into mindful stitching time.  It was surprising how changing my thoughts about what I was doing changed the whole process and benefited me mentally.

The long summer school holidays have started and I can’t wait for the break from our normal routine.  Sun is still shining too 🙂

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