Sunday Letter August, 9th 2020
Gee you come around so fast, it seems like time flies between each time I sit here to write but in truth so much happens in a week. When I look back on it I think of all the great people who visited the studio. I think of all the laughs I had with the crowd I work with. And I think of yesterday lying on the beach for an afternoon with a book and my daughter beside me. About hearing my son walk in the door and lay down his bag to stay the night at the shore. It was a good week.
Last week I wrote that I was feeling a bit off and so many of you responded that sometimes you felt that way yourself. Others worried and responded in kindness. Truth is, I am good. I told you I felt off because I think most of us experience it sometimes and if you did I wanted us both to know that, and not feel alone in it. There is no need to be lonely. There is nothing wrong with an off day. As I said last week it can be a catalyst.
I just finished Daniel Leviten's book "Successful Aging". In it he talks about many things that help us age well. It stood out for me that he talked about the importance of social interaction and not being lonely, especially as we grow older.
I have noticed that as I age I like my own company even more. I can sit and hook or read for hours on my own and be perfectly content. I am conscious of this, and careful not to let it become the only way I spend my time.
I know we need each other. I have always known that. Levitan's book was just a reminder for me to keep cultivating love and friendship. A reminder to ask myself who might need to hear from me? Who do I need to catch up with? To hold out my hand and see who takes it. Remember when you were little and walked to school with a friend hand in hand. How sweet that was. Now it is just a metaphor, but still we must keep each other company. We must try to be good to each other. To keep each other in mind.
I think of my father in law Theo who lived to be 96. He just loved people. He was often on the phone calling people to see how they were doing. He just wanted to connect. Whenever there was a storm I knew he would call to see how it looked out our way though we just lived a few miles apart. He was so good at reaching out.
Last year a woman was visiting the studio from British Columbia and met a group of rug hookers from Saint John. Through the jigs and the reels somehow they all connected and she made friends with the group. One of them was in the other day and said that through Covid the Saint John group has been zooming and rug hooking together, and their friend from BC was joining them.
These kinds of fun and easy connections are common in the rug hooking world. Perhaps that may mean rug hooking could be an important part of aging successfully. I know for sure that rug hooking builds community and connection. It is a way for us to create new friendships both online and in real life.
So many people have told me how helpful rug hooking has been to them through this difficult time that we have all experienced together. It gave them a place to go to sort out their thoughts. It offered comfort and solace. It also offered a sense of community online.
I love that. I love that you know that you have this craft, hobby, or art, whatever it is to you. It is so important to have things in your life that you enjoy and love to do. It is a blessing.
I feel so lucky and grateful that I have it too.Thanks for reading, I am glad you are there.
- Deanne Fitzpatrick