Crocheting and dancing. from Mel Baggs on Vimeo.
Crocheting is my new perseveration. You can call what I was doing in this video stimming, dancing, or whatever you want, but it’s how my body moved naturally and it felt great.
I was making granny hexagons for an afghan that’s turned into an all-purpose piece of fabric, that I’ve used as a blanket, a shawl, and a skirt. I’ve also made a wide variety of other things, shown below:
There’s hats, scarves, shawls, baby booties, and even a stuffed owl with a jar inside.
Crocheting is pretty much all I do these days. It’s nice to have something I can do with my hands that doesn’t require language or strenuous activity. I’m running into a lot of financial trouble because I keep buying yarn even when I can’t afford it. But I love crocheting, and it’s completely taken over my life.
I could never crochet or knit, growing up. It was visually too confusing to find where the stitches were. I had some of that problem when I was trying to learn this time, but apparently my visual processing is finally mature enough that I can distinguish what a stitch looks like. Once I figured that out, the rest became easy, and I took off really fast.
As an autistic person, and my particular type of autistic person, I need things to do that aren’t words, aren’t abstract, and aren’t surfing the net. I’ve been looking for something like this a long time. I was trying to get into sewing, when I found my old childhood crochet hooks in my sewing box. I never did get into sewing, because I took off so fast with crochet I haven’t looked back. It’s my only real interest at this point, and I bore people by trying to talk about it. But I love it. I always have at least three projects going at once that I switch off between depending on how I’m feeling.
What does this have to do with autism? Besides the ‘special interest’ thing, the basic thing is, I’m an autistic person and this is how I enjoy my life right now, and that’s all that matters. Also in the video I’m dancing to the autistic band, The Raventones. The movements make more sense with their music playing in the background. ;-)