Victoria's Crochet Mandalas for Marinke

This set of terrific mandalas comes from Victoria, who shares,

“My beautiful sister Valerie suffered for many, many years from Major Depressive Disorder. She was treatment resistant. She committed suicide at the age of 38.

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My heart breaks for Wink’s family. I know too well the unique and horrible loss it is to lose a loved one to this relentless disease. My thoughts and prayers go out to all of Wink’s family and friends.

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The first of the mandalas that Victoria sent is a rug mandala made using Wink’s patterns. She explains,

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“This rug is made from vintage yarn, made by the American Thread Company in Stamford Connecticut, and the mid-1960s. The yarn, which is Aunt Lydia’s Rug Yarn, is the same age that my sister would be. Her eyes were very light blue and grey – represented in this piece.”

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Victoria also crocheted a selection of colorful smaller mandalas. Two of the are modified from a design by Lori Carlson that was published in Interweave Crochet Fall 2015, one made in size 20 Lisbeth Cotton Thread and the other in Bernat Handicrafter Crochet Thread. She says of these,

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“The purple and grey are for sadness; the greens, pinks and teal are for healing and renewal.”

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She crocheted a brightly colored version modified from The 8th Gem’s Fair Isle Pattern and made in size 10 Aunt Lydia’s Crochet Thread:

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And a yummy version of a crochet mandala designed by Lucy of Attic 24 using Lion Brand’s cotton BonBons yarn:

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Although we have covered this before, I wanted to recap the symptoms of Major Depressive Disorder. I’m doing this because I recently had a relapse, and I didn’t notice it until someone close to me pointed it out. As much as I know about depression, including my own depression, it had eluded me, creeping in, and I actually went to the DSM and looked up the symptoms to see if it really was a depression. Indeed, it was. So, the symptoms are a depressed mood and / or loss of interest in things (one of these must be present for a diagnosis) plus at least five of the following symptoms:

  • Change in weight (gain or loss)
  • Change in sleep (more or less)
  • Restlessness
  • Fatigue or severe loss of energy
  • Feeling worthless and / or guilt
  • Decreased interest in things that normally interest you
  • Indecision or lack of ability to concentrate
  • Irritability
  • Thoughts about death

These symptoms must be present most of the day every day for two weeks for an official diagnosis of Major Depressive Disorder. They must represent a change from your normal baseline.

When I reviewed the list, I realized that I had a majority of the symptoms. It shook me up and forced me to see that I was sliding into depression again, which allowed me to quickly make a change in my meds and put some of my safety / support stuff into place. Sometimes it helps to review these things and see where you’re at.

This post is part of the Mandalas for Marinke remembrance project.


San Francisco based and crochet-obsessed writer, dreamer and creative spirit!

1 Comment

  1. Louise Fredieu Reply

    Thank you for this. i suffer from recurring major depressive disorder. Friends are my saviours from this disease. i do not know what would have happened to me without them.
    The last photo is the best one to me. There is so much joy in those colours. Crochet heals. Friends bring reprieve.

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