Saturday, April 4, 2015

Creating under Difficult Circumstances: When Things Fall Apart

The other day, my Dan fully broke my dress form. It was already fragile from another one of his stunts but I had managed to put it back together. This time, a recent climbing expedition, completely broke her in two. 

This is what it's like to create in my context, the context of having a child with autism who, although lovable and happy, is also quite impulsive and curious about how things come apart. I have to admit, when I saw Frida (yes, that's what I call this dress form), I was pissed!

I sew and make things so I have a lot of enticing stuff to play with; zippers, tape measures, fabric, paint, brushes,  etc. All of this feeds my sensory needs, so how can it not be tempting to a sensory needy child like mine. And yes, I have, on more than one occasion, sacrificed the zipper or piece of fabric so that he could be happy and quiet in my space while I sewed away, but the buck stops at my mannequins! He cannot have my dress forms too! I am constantly teaching my kids, especially my oldest, how to enforce boundaries, this is one instance when I need to take my own advice.  

So, in an attempt to not have this break me or my creative spirit, I took a deep breath, composed myself, and went about trying to find a solution to this issue. We recently moved and I finally have my own creative, enclosed space  but alas, it has no door! It is now time for a door, or a gate, something, because creating is my lifeline, and when things seem to be falling apart, it's what makes sense and holds me  together. I love my Dan to pieces but he cannot have a piece of my Frida! I need to figure out a way to lovingly enforce my boundaries for him concerning my personal and creative space.  I have to admit, though, this part of self-care is tough for me. 

If you create under difficult circumstances; sickness, caring for a special needs child, unsupportive environment, etc., I'd love to hear from you, swap stories, and learn! 


  1. Anyone with children creates in a difficult situation. I was making a silk suit for a special occasion in a hurry. My teen aged son kept fiddling absent-mindedly with the tension while he was on the phone. I had to keep re-stitching the seams until I worked out what had happened. Only just got it done in time. So, take a deep breath and put up a gate.

  2. Thanks for your story Annabelloise! Glad you figured out the issue! A gate I will put up!! :)