I’m the Tortoise, Life is the Hare

Tired, that’s the single word that defines how I feel. It’s not a well earned tiredness either, it’s just an endless worn out, worn down, impossible to push through weariness that just won’t seem to stop. I’m currently on my fourth round of chemo, but I’ve only managed to actually complete taking all the pills in one round so far, my body just will not cope with it and throws up all kinds of wonderful side effects which reach a level where the Oncology team aren’t happy for me to carry on so I stop, try to recover, and then start again and wait to see what happens this time. I have gone from having only over the counter painkillers in my medicine cabinet to having a range of different things I take to combat the side effects, it’s wearing and annoying and my inner 3 year old is tantruming more than she should, it’s hard to keep the lid on her sometimes but I do try.

So I plod along, picking out the things that absolutely have to be done and trying to do them on time and letting the rest go. Unfortunately that brings it’s stresses as I’m having to let things go that I want to do and live with a house that is never as tidy or clean as I want it to be (and trust me, my levels of expectation and comfort aren’t majorly high in those areas). My sister is still staying with me, helping me out, and it is reassuring to have someone else around, something I’ve never felt I needed the whole time I have been a single parent pre-cancer. I resent that I need help, I don’t want to need it or want it, I want to go back to being the independent do it all myself get out of my way woman I was before all this. I aim to get back to being her, but at the moment it’s hard to imagine staying awake all day let alone kicking any asses…

So, I have been sewing and knitting when I can, I manage a few hours a couple of times a week and I’m getting through my list, but of course for everything I sew I add three more wants to the list. I also almost caught up to having sewn as much fabric as I’ve bought this year, my goal is always to try and sew a bit more than I’ve bought but I can live with breaking even in a year. As soon as I got within 5 metres of evening out I went and bought more, The Textile Centre on Ebay is my weakness, I have things in my basket there at the moment and only the fact that it’s Jim’s 13th Birthday next week is stopping me from pressing the buy button!

Speaking of Jim, two weeks before the Easter holiday he got appendicitis, it took 3 days to get a proper diagnosis and we spent 12 hours in the A&E waiting for test results etc before being admitted. He was operated on during the Jr Drs strike so it was interesting to watch two Consultants with very different approaches discuss how to deal with a young patient with Aspergers Syndrome. They did a great job and he’s fine and back at school finally after going right from 2 weeks off post-op to 2 weeks Easter holidays! Sitting in uncomfortable chairs and sleeping on a horrible chair bed thing for 5 days and nights did me no good at all really but there you go, that’s parenthood for you, it doesn’t stop for your stuff, you just have to work that around it!

Right, so, I finished a cardigan but I need to block it a bit before taking pictures of it. Still have plenty of projects on the needles, I seem to cast on 2 for every one I cast off…

Sewing wise I’ve been sticking to easy things, I made a Blueprints for Sewing Cabin Dress with some £2.40 a metre thin denim from The Textile Centre to try out the pattern before using the fabric I really want to.Cabin DressCabin DressCabin DressI added 3″ to the length of this dress and I think I’ll add another inch next time as it’s still a bit shorter than I like. There are some great details on this that I love; the pockets are great, I messed up the first one but figured out the directions when I did the second one, it looks fine from the outside but the inside is a total mess! The seams are finished with bias binding which I made from self fabric, turns out that wasn’t such a good idea….

Cabin Dress FrayingFirst wash and they have frayed on every single edge, I’m going to have to flip them up again and stitch it down with some liberal fray check being applied along the way. To be honest, although I think it’s a nice design element, I can’t see myself doing the bias binding thing on anything but the neckline in the future, I’ll just flip a small double hem and call it done.

I’m still not ready to use the chosen fabric for this as I want to lower the bust dart. It looks fine even though it’s about 4″ too high, but I want to see if I can get it to hit just right. I really like this pattern and want to keep it as part of my pattern ‘stable’ so a little bit of work on it will be worth it. I have fabric chosen for the next try and instructions on dropping a dart down, I just need the energy to put it all together. I’m not doing a FBA because the dress fits how I want it to fit me, I don’t like the way a FBA adds more fabric and width to the rest of the garment, I don’t need it there and I am trying to stop making baggy sacks, I only need the dart to point in the right place. Hopefully I can get it right and make a few summer dresses from this pattern before we actually get to summer…

I loved the denim so much (it was sold so cheaply as they had found flaws in some of it, but I managed to buy 8m in total with no flaws…) that I made another Roberts Collection dress from it. I went with a size 6 and shortened it a few inches and it’s just right, plus a nice weight for summer too.
Roberts Collection Dress

I used the last two denim buttons on it too, I love the ease of hammering these on, I can see more of them in my future!

Roberts Dress Button

Whilst in the hospital with Jim I finished off my Meringue Cowl. The yarn is Yarntopia Tresures Bamboo in Moonlight, I used 3mm needles to get a gauge I was happy with and did as many repeats as I could to use up the yarn so it’s between a shoulder covering thing and a cowl, but so soft and pretty.

Meringue CowlMeringue Cowl

A perfect soothing easy project for a tired body and brain.

I have lots more to show you but I want to get something done today before lunch and then falling back into bed for a few hours. I will endeavour not to leave it so long between posts, but I’m finallywakingup on Twitter and Instagram should you want to keep tabs on me between posts and the brevity of those places is much easier on my brain than writing long posts!

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6 thoughts on “I’m the Tortoise, Life is the Hare

  1. Cybele says:

    Glad to hear from you – been checking your blog regularly for updates. Also good to hear Jim’s made a full recovery – we had the same thing 18 months ago with now 14yo. We went in thinking we’d be sent home again that evening with a ‘it’s just a virus’, we ended up staying 2 nights and I’d brought nothing with me apart from knitting (phew!) and my tablet.
    Sorry to hear about the tiredness and the side-effects of the chemo tablets. Hope you ‘get used’ to them soon and that the tiredness starts to wear off too.

  2. Janine. says:

    Sorry to hear about your tiredness and side effects and the added drama of your son. Don’t feel bad about your purchases , you certainly deserve to treat yourself.

  3. Christine Brown says:

    Love that cowl, it looks so soft and comfy. I don’t know how you keep sewing with the way you’re feeling, you’re amazing. I look forward to reading your posts. Hope you’re feeling better very soon.

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