Well, it was for me, anyway. My therapist has been trying to help me find some way or something to do to get me out of the house and socializing with others. I tried a few groups offered at my clinic, but just never felt like going again, even if I had a ride scheduled to pick me up. I just kept cancelling, until I realized, I really didn’t want to do them. She tried other mental health related places, that you need your case manager to refer you to, and they look to have some fun things too…but, again, when the time came, I was never ready, didn’t want to be ready and ended up never going anyway. I dreaded the day of the group, felt awkward, uncomfortable, almost ill…. just in thinking about going.
But, my T most recently told me of a web site called meetup.com which is has nothing to do with mental health whatsoever. What it is, is a website where anyone at all can start a group on any topic imaginable, and have a page on the site accessible to any visitor to the site. They have book groups, beer and wine groups, animal groups, computer groups, games groups, hiking groups, and blends of all the groups, like beer and dog groups or wine and reading groups. They pages/groups you find are all in your general area, and some even specific to your city.
Well, so I found a group in my area, that is for needlepointers of any kind. I have been doing embroidery and cross-stitch since I was about 12 when my 2nd cousins introduced it to me when I stayed with them for a summer and was bored.
They had pillowcases with stamps on, tea towels with stamps, table runners with stamps…that was how I first started stitching. I continued in my life remembering from time to time the fun of embroidery and then later forgetting again. I have been off and on in the last 7 yrs or so, working on a project that I just don’t get much done on from sitting to sitting.
So when I saw this group listed on meetup.com I just had to join! Something I’ve always enjoyed doing, but never seem to have the time to do much of, and it is with other stitchers who enjoy it too! And it is held in a needlepoint shop, so you will never run out of projects, threads, etc. So, I went to my first outing for the Stitching Group yesterday, and despite getting up late, my GPS conking out on me, and having to find it on my own, I still managed to be only 30 min late, and really, really enjoyed my first meeting. I managed to get some progress made in the remaining 4 hrs, and had a nice visit with the lady who started the group. There were others stitchers there as well, not part of our group. It turns out that the NeedlePoint Shop welcomes any customers to come stitch every Saturday. So, if I want to go and visit and sew more than every 3 weeks, I can! Or i can just go whenever my group meets.
In any case, I had the best time talking with the group person and the other stitchers, and sewing. And I didn’t have any issues of forboding like I have had when thinking/trying/planning attending any of the other groups thru my mental health clinic, or independent places that your clinic makes you a referral for. This group was not held together by the thread of mental illness….it was simply people who like to sew. And it was GREAT. I am already looking forward to the next meeting.
For those of you who might be interested in a NON mental health group, you should definitely check out meetup.com. Also, they are much more about ones interest, rather than ones illness. And I guarantee you can find something regarding your interests.