Dancing through Pain


Pain is an odd thing. It has lingered far longer than I had thought it would post-surgery. It takes a stronger hold in the evenings, keeping me from feeling like I want to go out anywhere. It can drain the life right of you. I’ve been trying to fight it by not only taking pain medication but also employing natural pain meds such as drawing, painting, knitting and crocheting.


In my last post, you saw the crocheted motifs I had made originally for a capelet design I had milling around in my head. But I switched gears and decided to make a vest out of them instead. Freeform crochet is one of my favorite things to do…no rules, only boundaries (ie. the shape of the vest).


My husband has officiated several weddings this summer. I have not been able to attend any of them. This past weekend was a wedding of the daughter of some dear friends of ours and I just didn’t want to miss out on it. So I pushed myself to attend the rehearsal dinner on Saturday evening and then the wedding and reception on Sunday evening.


Pain doesn’t take a holiday when you decide to go out and enjoy life. I barely made it through the majority of the rehearsal dinner. And I made myself make it through as much of the reception as I could.

I am so glad I did!


Sitting at our table while others were out on the dance floor, my husband nodded to me and then nodded in the direction of the dance floor. I was surprised he wanted to dance and even more surprised that my response was OK! Let’s go!


Walking is painful in the evenings and I knew dancing would not be any better. But somehow, as we started our “swing” moves to the beach music being played, I forgot about the pain and relished dancing with my husband. I made it to the end of that song but knew I could not do any more.

But I did it! I danced through the pain! It may have been the vest I was wearing! Ha!;) I’ve also been crocheting through the pain. Knitting through the pain. And painting and drawing through the pain.


A couple of friends have been asking how I do this even though I’m not feeling well. My response is that I somehow forget about how I’m feeling while I’m being creative in some way. It is indeed a natural pain medication.

So I’ll keep on “dancing” no matter how I feel. Every stitch of this freeform crochet vest was so enjoyable…I’m dreaming of other freeform works!

If you’ve never tried this type of crochet, you should! Typically, I cut out of muslin a “pattern”…a simple shape of whatever it is I want to make: vest, shawl, etc. I didn’t do that on this vest, just winged it and kept laying out the pieces as I made them to see where I needed to go next. I wanted the bottom edge to be organic, not straight. Freeform crochet allows you to add any stitch, any where you like.


I have a couple of books that inspire me and give ideas. But this one is my favorite: Creative Crochet Lace: A Freeform Look at Classic Crochet by Myra Wood. It shows how you go about designing and creating a freeform crochet piece to wear. Myra calls this method “doodling with yarn”. I love that! Instead of doodling with a pen on paper, you really are doodling with a hook and yarn.

So fun! You should give it a try! It will even help with any ailment you may be experiencing!

9 thoughts on “Dancing through Pain

  1. Janell says:

    Inspiring post! I love your sketches and free form creations. Reading your posts is uplifting….even when there is pain or sadness to share. Life is real…good days and bad…but moving graciously through each day in an authentic way if what you do. Thanks for shring.

  2. Cheryl Powell says:

    Wonderful post, Jennifer. We artists are so lucky to know about the creative pain killer and I love that you are sharing with others. Also, the vest is so much fun and looks great on you!

  3. freebirdsings says:

    So sorry you are still feeling so much pain. Do they tell you it’s usual to feel this much for so long? I am glad you got to dance and that it helped for a bit at least. Drawing helps me forget pain although I can’t say as I’ve had to deal with too much of it.

    I think this vest is my absolute favorite of your yarn projects so far. So many of your pieces are just gorgeous. I’ve stuck pretty much to simple sweaters and afghans. I’ve designed some of my own sweaters but that’s simply because I either can’t afford the nice yarn a project shows or I can’t match the gauge more than that I want to design a piece. You are just so creative through your yarn or your pens and paints!

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