So, it's almost a year since I set up the Coral Collective, providing crochet project bags for a hospital waiting room. Each pack has everything a patient needs to crochet a small coral.
Now the idea was to get the patients to send me their corals, I would then sew them into reefs and use them to decorate the walls of the clinic, at the same time documenting the patients' stories and how the crochet had helped them.
In the last year, I've received one, yes, just ONE coral back (the rather lovely one pictured above) and even this was sent back anonymously.
So, initially, I felt I'd failed, after all, one coral does not a reef make.
But then I stopped and thought about it. I may have only received one coral, but I have put over 300 project bags into the clinic and they have all gone and continue to do so.
When speaking to those that work in the clinic, their reaction was overwhelmingly positive.
The clinic is shared between gynae and psychiatric outpatients. Apparently the women visiting, especially those in the older age group, love picking up the crochet hook again.
So maybe it isn't a failure. These women must enjoy being given a gift that brings back memories, brightens their days with the colours of the yarn and keeps them occupied during their time in the clinic (and hopefully at home, too). Otherwise, none of the bags would go.
And what do I get out of it? Well, I realised that I need to take my ego out of the equation. This is not about me, or recognition, or thanks. This is a totally altruistic project. Kindly people donate yarn,
It's all just paying it forward in a way.
And that is how I realise that I must measure success in this instance.
So why am I blogging about it if I don't want recognition? Purely to encourage you to do something similar.
Get fibre active.
It feels good.