Saturday, 22 October 2011

Keeping Track

You guys are awesome. So many lovely comments on my last post and other responses to it. Thanks x

It wasn't until Wednesday night that the anxiety subsided properly. In the meantime I had come across this on Pinterest.

It is a conceptual knitting pattern from Leafcutter Designs. I am a bit of a sky geek and love cloud watching. It struck me that much the same could be done to keep track of mood as well. This is something that is often advised by therapists since when you are anxious/depressed it's very hard/impossible to remember when you weren't and to stop yourself believing you have always and always will feel like this. Being at the same time a realist (not a great combination with depression) I knew that I was very likely to lose interest in something I was supposed to pick up and knit two lines of each day. This is when I let technology be my guide.
iphone mood tracker
The app I'm using is free and called "TracknShare". You can track anything with any scale. I've chosen a five point scale for both the sky colour and for my mood. If I stick with it for a month I'll look for some suitable yarns.

My love of Pinterest continues unabated. Here are some recent ones.
Source: None via Alex on Pinterest

Source: None via Alex on Pinterest

Source: None via Alex on Pinterest

I have also been doing some knitting. Plugging away on the lovely cables of the Pinery Jumper.
cable knitting blue
I'm down to the waist (it's top down) and enjoying it.

I leave you with this final thought, also from Pinterest.
Source: None via Alex on Pinterest

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Why I do not have a cat

This is such an uncomfortable post to write. Yesterday started off as a thrilling day - one when my dream of a decade or more was finally becoming reality. I was going to a cat sanctuary to meet a cat who I was then going to bring home with me. I was so excited. I had assembled all the equipment you might need for an indoor cat. It was all set up.

I went off to the sanctuary and the cat they had for me hated me. It was nothing personal - she hated everyone. I spent a few minutes sitting with her and stroking the other cat in with her and then I held my hand out to her so she could have a sniff. She gouged a chunk out of my finger and drew blood. Then whenever I got closer than a metre to her she hissed and growled. Evina, the sanctuary owner, agreed that she probably wasn't quite ready to be rehoused at the moment. So she took me upstairs and I met a beautiful 3 year old called Cookie. We got on very well. It seemed we were good to go.
freeform suitcase
She came home with me. She was understandably nervous. I left her to explore and did some knitting and every half an hour or so would make some sort of friendly overture. She responded when I did this and then went back to her 'safe' spot. After a couple of hours she was settled enough to have some food and water and then she got straight on my lap. She was very affectionate and it suddenly struck me that I had taken on responsibility for this little cat. She was now completely dependant on me. I was the one who would be taking care of her and ensuring she came to no harm for the next 10+ years. And that absolutely terrified me.

Somehow I had been thinking about this for years and been planning this adoption for months without this fact becoming clear to me. I had been so utterly stupid. How could I have done this? I didn't feel like I was 100% responsible for myself and I'd taken on another 'person' as well? I tried to calm down. I tried rationalising. I called my Mum. She tried to calm me down and she rationalised. She offered to come up, to take the cat to their house til I was calmer but I knew very definitely that this was not something that would have a short term fix.
Evina had been very clear that the sanctuary never lost touch with any of their cats and that if there was a problem I should call day or night. It was about 5pm so I didn't feel too bad calling her and she was lovely. She was so calm and understanding. She said this had happened before and that it was a situation where it was hard to know how you would feel until it actually happened. She came over and took Cookie away while I tried to hold back my tears.

I'm trying to hold on to the fact that that this isn't "it". Flash is out of the country for work til the end of the month but has said some lovely things by email and text, as have Mum and Evina. Flash said that this wasn't the end of my getting a cat - it just meant that "Cookie wasn't Smackdown". Evina said that Cookie had had a lot of cuddles and affection and a new room to explore and would be going back to the friend she had been sharing a room with at the sanctuary and so would be quite happy. Mum said...lots of Mum type stuff. And I have been telling myself that I couldn't have predicted this, that it is a temporary setback, that it doesn't mean I'm ill or getting worse again.
But...the little voice. Not, you know, a voice, in my head, kind of thing, but the almost sub-concious murmurings we all have that undermine our confidence. At least I assume we all have them. Mine is a kind of town crier. The experience leaves me somewhat humiliated - since I have been going on about getting a cat this weekend to anyone who would listen - but with a little more self-knowledge.

To be honest I feel utterly shit. I wanted a cat so much but it's the wrong time for me. I need to be completely confident in myself before I can take on responsibility for anyone else. Still, I wish I could have discovered that a different way. And now I've got to spend the next few days explaining to everyone what happened.
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