...my life changed a lot. My family moved to Ontario, Canada and my regular ol' husband became "the Preacher." So many things to adjust to: living in a different country (we're US citizens), a spouse's new career, being away from family and friends, becoming a full-time SAHM, meeting lots of new people, etc.
I think this has been the toughest year of my life. We have been confirmed in our call here and God has provided everything we need. But it hasn't been easy.
This has also been the most productive sewing year of my life. This is no coincidence. Sewing has really helped me cope with all the changes in many ways:
1. I spend most evenings alone (after the kids are in bed). The Preacher has a lot of meetings or work to finish in his office. This is when I do most of my sewing. I am thankful that I have something to do that I enjoy during these hours. I find my sewing machine to be good company.
2. The language barrier between Canada and the USA is pretty minimal, but every new region has colloquial language (and spelling!) that takes some figuring out and getting used to - beyond, of course, the "eh" that everyone associates with Canada. Along the same lines, we have had to deal with international banking, immigration issues, and the like that have been totally new and unfamiliar. My sewing patterns, books, and favorite websites, on the other hand, have been comfortingly familiar. I know this language and these processes.
3. I find one of the hardest things about moving is losing people that share your history. I often long to just sit and chat with someone who has known me and my life for a long time. Getting to really know people is hard work for me and it takes a long time. But, my sewing machines have made the last few moves with me and I know them. I know just where the tension dial needs to be set. I know exactly where the serger thread will likely break during re-threading. It's taken time to learn these things. I haven't given my machines names like some people have, but often they do feel like old friends.
4. Sewing has helped me clothe my family. Shopping is kind of complicated for me. Either I take three little kids along with me - that sounds fun, eh? Or I hire a babysitter and go solo - that sounds expensive and I haven't even bought anything yet. Add in the time to get used to the new and foreign stores and learn where to shop and it just seems like a very long and costly process. I sew pretty much all of my own clothes and a lot of my kids' clothes (I have bothered to become familiar with some second-hand stores).
5. Those of you that have done (or are doing) the SAHM gig know that it can be rather monotonous and understimulating. I love my kids dearly and am grateful for the time that I get to spend with them while they are little. However, some days it feels like all I do is clean up the kitchen, change diapers, help pick up toys, etc only to do all the same things again (and again and again) just a short time later. Progress seems invisible. When I sew I make forward progress and have something to show for my time. Something about me needs this sense of accomplishment.
I've always loved sewing, but I've been particularly grateful for this skill and interest that I have in the past year. Hopefully the coming year is easier, but still with good sewing output.