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Making Do

September 2, 2007

I know I am a woman with expensive taste and big dreams. I also know I’ve managed on a lot less than I have now – wisdom, money, or material things. And Lord knows there are so many people who have so much less than me, and they manage to live happy fulfilling lives, so why can’t I do the same? Why do I feel the need to attain some level of perfection before being happy (or more to my main motivation, before allowing myself to date and allow someone in my life)?

I had a depressing day yesterday. I had every intention of using this long weekend to accomplish a lot of the last details of my home remodel, starting with painting the baseboards that still need installing. I see no point in bringing all the furniture back into my sewing room and other areas when I’d just have to move it again. So I went and bought a moderately priced paint sprayer (same price as renting for four hours) and got down to business.

My body had other plans for me. This fibromyalgia and vitamin D deficiency has ended up kicking my butt. I physically could not manage just the painting of the baseboards. I laid them all out on the driveway and just kneeling down to spray them was more than I could manage. How the hell did I manage pulling up all that nail down wood just a couple months ago? Where did that energy come from and where is it now?

Ya, it’s more than just kneeling, but I can’t explain it. The problem with fibromyalgia is that you don’t look sick. And mentally, I’m not. And I’m young still. But I hurt everywhere. When I get up in the morning even the bottoms of my feet hurt. I feel like I’m a hundred and two years old.

Clearly, I am just going to have to hire people to do these things for me from now on. This doesn’t mean I’m a cripple or can’t do any projects, it just means I’m going to have to be more selective about which ones and how much energy and physical exertion they take. I’m learning that too much exertion is as bad as too little exertion and stress exacerbates my fibromyalgia. I’m stressing over this stuff way too much.

(Is this guy for hire?)


Until I can afford to pay for the labor, I’m going to get back to sewing. Nothing give me more joy than my sewing and creating things for myself and my loved ones. I have a foldable table that I’m going to set my machines on for now, and still have the table I used before for cutting. Really, what more do I need? And… I have a new friend at work who – get this – SEWS! She has an embroidery machine too and we’re going to plan a sewing day. (See, I told you I was blessed.)

I’ve learned that when obstacles get in my way, there’s no point fighting them. Do what I can and if they don’t budge, then maybe my God has other plans for me. Maybe I’m supposed to go around them or look at alternative solutions.

So what will be first up? I’m not sure. Something quick and gratifying. Maybe a small quilt for my granddaughter’s dolls? Maybe a tried and true top from my stash? Suggestions?

Happy Sewing from Lily and me.


  1. September 2, 2007 9:26 am

    I know this feeling way too well! It took me five days to get the energy to go to the grocery store this week, and ten days to paint the bathroom! My boyfriend wants to go cycling today, and for the first time, I’m afraid to go. It’s so weird to have to conserve physical energy, and hard to know that if you exert too much, you’ll pay dearly. Your creative pursuits (blogging, sewing) are great for Fibro.

    If you find out that the fellow pictured above is for hire, please let me know. In the meantime, good luck!

  2. BjP permalink
    September 2, 2007 9:46 am

    Oh, Claire…..I’d send my DH over in a minute if we lived closer, ’cause he’s a good handyman/furniture mover/DYIer/and cutiepie!

    I’m sorry you aren’t at your physical best, but my dear, just go with the flow for now. Do what you can, and put the rest out of your mind. I know that’s easier said than done, but I don’t think anybody would criticize you for that, so why should you criticize yourself? Your plan to hire out the jobs will let you get your strength back, so just do it as time and money allows.

    I say make something for the kiddies or the doggies to start with – something easy and quick that you can see a result right away without too much fussiness. Or, work on those photos for your walls.

    Hoping you have better days real soon! 🙂

  3. September 2, 2007 11:42 am

    Best of luck!

  4. September 2, 2007 1:33 pm

    sorry to hear you’re not feeling well. 😦 as for sewing, i would make something quick and easy from a trusted pattern. use a pretty fabric…something that will lift your spirits when you wear it.

    don’t feel bad about hiring someone to finish the job. you have done *so* much by yourself. over the years, hubski and i have learned which DIY tasks we really don’t enjoy or have the time for….we don’t think twice about hiring those out.

  5. September 2, 2007 4:05 pm

    Claire…you’re post really hit home for me. I suffer from Lupus and have similar physical limitations.

    After many years of stressing about it (and with a nickname like mine it’s an added curse…LOL), I finally learned to accept it, do what I can, hire out what I can’t and the heck with the rest.

    Most importantly, I learned to pace myself…not to overdo it, yet keep moving ever so slowly.

    It will all get done…be patient. Sew something that will bring someone joy…it’s a great distraction.

    Hope tomorrow is a better day!

    With friendship,

  6. September 2, 2007 8:14 pm

    Sorry you’re not feeling great. Your sewing day sounds divine! (((((HUGS))))) sandi

  7. September 3, 2007 10:18 pm

    Claire… I’m sorry to hear you’ haven’t been well. You are so right to take it easy. (((hugs))) Definitely take a break and make yourself something gratifying! You will feel so much better after that. 🙂
    Do take care 🙂 (((hugs)))

  8. Ronda permalink
    September 4, 2007 12:35 pm

    I ran across your blog and really enjoyed your writing style. I, too, have Fibromyalgia so I know exactly where you are coming from with that. It’s a very delicate balance and one that is difficult to attain. I count myself lucky when I have a good day and beat myself up, mentally, when I don’t.

    Hire it out. Sometimes church groups or boy scouts and the like do things like that for community service. Ask around. The Resource Center for Independent Living may be a good place to check, too. Hang in there. I’m looking forward to seeing your finished project.

  9. September 8, 2007 9:21 am

    Claire ~ I am late to this party…however, the line about you wanting to get back to what makes you happy really struck me. I think too often we (women) allow everything else to come first because we think we are suppose to instead of doing some things for ourselves. I know that my sewing keeps me sane and brings balance to the very tumultous world I live in. And being single also, I realize how it is when you don’t have someone to come home and vent to…so sewing does that for me. It gives me time to just be me and enjoy one of the things that I am good at without any criticisms from the world – and actually much encouragement! So I say set up the folding table, grab a piece of fabric and go for it!

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