Hello, my name is Jessie and I work from home. Well, I own my own business; I am a freelance and independent knit and crochet designer, and a blogger. I am also the mother of twin girls. Oh, and I live with depression and anxiety, so I’m always at eleven.
This is not what people want to hear when they ask you to introduce yourself and say a bit about what you do. It is not even what they hear. This is what they hear:
“I am a stay at home mom who likes to knit and play on the computer and I like to whine, I am overly dramatic, and I don’t really like people.”
My life when dealing with people in “the real world” ~ people outside of my business ~ is a constant struggle against the elephant in the room: Their perception of what I do and how overly dramatic I am. I don’t have a 9 to 5, I have a when I wake up to when I go to bed. If I am not taking care of my kids or my house (not that I take very good care of my house) I am working. (here is one of many great articles about working from home)
People see me volunteering at the book fair and they say things like “it must be so nice to not work so you can do this.” Um, no. I do it because I love helping the kids, but I DO work, and when I take off work to be at the school, NO ONE is working my business. It is on pause. When I go on vacation, there is no one to cover for me. If I stop, my business stops.
Don’t get me wrong. I LOVE what I do. It is my passion and I would not change it for the world. (speaking of passion, here is an awesome bit about following your passion) I just wish that people would understand that it does not make me lazy, that I do work as much as they do. I am not looking for pity, I am not trying to say I work harder than most, I am just asking that you don’t assume that I am “playing with yarn and hanging out on Facebook all day.” Go take a look at my Facebook group. Yes I was on there after 11pm the past few nights. HELPING someone with a pattern. A mother who has only ever made flat items such as blankets before, and who is trying to make a dress from one of my patterns for her daughter. I am honored that she chose my pattern, and I am thrilled to be able to help her improve her skills and make a dress for her daughter. If the only time she has to talk to me and get the help she needs is 11 pm, then 11 pm it is. I don’t know if she is in another country where it is a more day~like hour, or if maybe she is so busy the rest of the day that is the only time she has. I don’t care. I just want to help her. It is part of my business and it’s part of who I am.
Speaking of eleven. I have major depressive disorder. I am not just dramatic. ALL my emotions are set to 11. All. The. Time. The only exception is when I am on meds, and then they are ALL set to 2. Not just the sad emotions, but the happy ones, the giving a crap ones, the loving my family ones. All at 2. This is why I try to stay off meds. I know the signs that a cycle of depression is coming, and I know ways to fight it. Sometimes I win. Sometimes it wins. Then comes the meds. And the 2s. I am currently fighting. My normal everything-at-11 goes to overdrive. I feel like everything I say and do is wrong. When someone says or does something nice to/for me, it is all I can do not to break out into tears of joy. When I say or do something wrong (or that I perceive as wrong) it is all I can do not to crawl into bed for days. Not that I would sleep. I went to bed at 1 am last night. I would like to say that I cried myself to sleep, but I did not. I cried until I couldn’t cry anymore, and they I just lay there. Thinking about all the ways I had messed up during the day and during the past few years. Thinking about all the ways I could, and probably would, make things even worse. Thinking about how freakin’ crazy I was for thinking these things when I have a great family and my business is really growing. The last time I checked the clock it was after 3 am.
And when I am fighting like I am right now, I really see the bad everywhere. People treating me like I have “normal” emotions doesn’t help. They get so mad at me because I react differently than they do; but they don’t understand that it is not in my control. Even when I know I am reacting wrong, I can’t fix it. Not when I am at this point. I can just fight. Try to pull myself back to my normal eleven. Back to the point when I don’t turn every comment and every look into people not liking me. Back to the point when I don’t think every nice person is just trying to be nice to me so I will leave them alone, or because they pity me.
I’m sure this sounds like a pity party. OK, I’m not sure. It’s hard for me to know what is real and what is me being “dramatic” when I am at this point. This is not my intent. I just want to say this because I know I am not alone in these…issues. Maybe some people reading this are in the same boat and now feel a little less alone, and a little less crazy. Maybe some people reading this have people in their lives in one or both of these situations and understand them a little more now. And maybe it helps a bit for me to share.
I am fighting. I will continue to fight. I will win and I will get back to my version of normal.
Or I won’t and I will end up on meds for a while again. I am really trying to avoid that as I worry what 2 will do to my ability to run my business.
Here is the last time I shared about this.
Now back to your regularly scheduled blog…
If you have any questions, want to share pictures of your work, or just want to chat with Jessie and other crafty individuals, than join my Facebook group.
© Copyright 2014 Jessie Rayot / Jessie At Home All my videos, patterns, charts, photos and posts are my own work, so you may not copy them in any way. If you want to share this information with someone, then share the link to this post. If you want to share on your own blog / website, then you may use the first photo in this post and link back to this post. Also, you may not give away printed copies of this post.