I’m in the process of getting my act together again. It all hinges on one thing. One very tough thing, for me. I have to really commit to being gluten-free. I realized that gluten is causing my fatigue, and I even caught myself admitting that if I wanted to survive a ski excursion (more about that on a later date) I needed to go gluten-free in the days before. I know it, and I’ve finally accepted that eating gluten is no longer an option – I have to change my diet. <sob>
We all know by now that I don’t do New Year’s resolutions, but by sheer coincidence I made the commitment yesterday. I checked out Gluten-Free Girl from the library, and the author’s experiences are so identical to mine that I just couldn’t deny it any longer. I am writing about it on my blog because I want the accountability. If I tell people that I’m not going to eat gluten anymore and then I go out and order pizza, there will be social consequences. I need that. For me, gluten is an addiction. I love bread – it just doesn’t love me.
On the subject of accountability, I also have decided to enhance my blog a bit. At the request of many friends and students, I am going to start putting knit and crochet help videos on my blog. I am going to start with a smallish commitment – I’ll put one up every other week. If there is something you want video help with, please leave me a request in the comments and I’ll make a video about it. It may take a while to get to your particular request if I get a lot of them, but I will get there. Maybe I’ll even put cat care videos up as well. I’m thinking along the lines of brushing, claw clipping, medicating, etc. I’ve been meaning to do this for awhile, but I have been too tired to really start it. Now, with the gluten-free lifestyle, I should have the energy (and with this announcement, the social pressure) to get it rolling. I’m not promising these videos will be stellar, but who knows where I will end up with practice!
I need to catch you up on the last month or so. At the beginning of December, I went to San Francisco and taught beginning crochet classes. I had a good time, and I learned that people consider me a good teacher. My students mostly remarked on the fact that I was patient and willing to show the same thing to them a million times if necessary. I look at it this way – in my life, I’m going to be showing someone how to make knit or crochet stitches a few billion times, so it really doesn’t matter if I am showing the same thing to the same person or a different person each time. Having the broader view breeds patience, I guess.
I quit my yarn shop teaching gig shortly after I came back. I am only going to give the short version here so that I don’t burn any bridges. If things change, I don’t want to have written something down that permanently damages the store. At the shop where I was teaching, I developed a reputation for my patience and skill in teaching knit and crochet. I was only being paid for just two hours on Fridays to help the customers who came in with questions. By the end of my time at the store, people were coming in just to get my help, and I would end up staying later and later each time. I loved helping the customers, but I wasn’t getting paid for my time. I requested that I be compensated for the time that I put in, given that I was a draw for the store and that I convinced people to buy yarn, but I was flatly refused. If I had been given a reason, like the store was losing money and couldn’t afford to do that, I would have understood and just volunteered a bit. However, I was informed that there were classes available that people could pay for (not that the store bothered to advertise the classes, which was reason number two for my resignation) and that I needed to learn to just go home after my two hours were up. Additionally, I was spoken to as if I were a child, and informed that I was violating rules that were never actually put in place (luckily, I had email proof of my position). When I’m doing a job because I want to and not because I have to, well, I’m not going to take that kind of crap. So I quit.
The quitting was a good thing, though. I never before thought enough of myself to stand up to someone mistreating me like that. It was this experience and some drama that I cannot talk about that led me to yet another good change – I see value in me. Not much, mind you, but enough to know that I am an asset to some people and businesses, and that I may even be more than they deserve. It’s a change that makes me feel powerful. I feel in control of my life, even if only a little bit. I am here, this new year, as a new person. Roar.