At Cricut we are always humbled to hear stories from our members of how their machines and craft supplies have helped them to cope with challenges in their lives.
International Women’s Day seemed like the perfect day to share one such story. An individual story that is typical of so many. This is Lisa Johns’ story.
Lisa, 33 from Cornwall, tells us how discovering Cricut helped her to deal with a medical condition shortly after the birth of her daughter.
“I started having severe migraines when I was 5 months pregnant. The doctors put it down to my high hormone levels at the time. Around 6 weeks, after Lainey was born, I would wake up at 5am each day with migraines again. At one point, I couldn’t see out of my left eye. Then, a few hours later, I couldn’t see out of my right eye.
“The doctors referred me for an MRI which highlighted a small growth in my brain. After 6 weeks, we finally had the news that it was non-cancerous but is growing on the pituitary gland. This gland controls all other glands in the body so hormone production can be affected. We are now awaiting results to find out which of my hormones are affected and whether treatment or medication is required depending on these results.
How did creativity help you?
“I first heard about Cricut when I was pregnant, during the first national lockdown in the UK. I’d been baking for a long time and wanted something new to get stuck into. I started searching for hobbies to do at home and discovered the amazing world of Cricut.
“After Lainey was born Cricut gave me something positive to focus on while Lainey (my daughter) was sleeping. She loves her sleep so I found myself getting anxious and down whilst awaiting the results of my tests.
“Crafting allowed me to escape the negative thinking and keeping my mind and hands busy during the dark days is what got me through.”
We asked Lisa what her favourite projects are and what she likes to make.
“The first thing I made was a wooden sign for my home with our surname on using removable vinyl as a stencil. I then made a wooden sign for Lainey’s bedroom that had her name and ‘We love you to the moon and back’ on it.
“My favourite things to make are home organisation labels , 3D flowers in a box frame, and cushion covers.
“My must-have tools are the weeding tool and Infusible Ink! I was always so afraid of using the Infusible Ink. I was terrified it would be too complicated but oh my gosh, I am addicted! So simple to use and you can create the most beautiful crafts with it! My favourite make is a unicorn image that says ‘Born to be a unicorn’ inside a unicorn head shape (from Design Space), using the rainbow Infusible Ink. It turned out so well!
“The next thing I would love to try is an exploding photo box with Lainey’s first year in photos inside.”
International Women’s Day
On International Women’s Day, we asked Lisa to tell us about a woman who has made a significant impact on her life.
“The biggest inspiration in my life is my mum. She raised 5 children, worked so hard to provide for us. Along with my dad, she showed us how to face the hard things in life, and enjoy the happy times. My father passed away from lung cancer in November 2016. Then, 3 months later, my mum was diagnosed with lung cancer, on top of an existing lung condition which already made everyday life an extreme struggle for her.
“She fought so hard through chemotherapy as they couldn’t offer surgery due to her existing condition. I watched her struggling to breathe, no hair, and facing the daunting news that they could not operate and she never once moaned, or gave up.
“She got up every day and started the fight again. Her cancer is still there but it is under control. She is as strong today as she was back then despite her illness. My mum is my hero and she has made me the strong and independent person I am today.”
The entire Cricut team wishes Lisa the very best as she continues to find out more about the growth in her brain and seeks treatment. Lisa explains her next steps:
“I am still waiting to find out what my treatment will involve but I am lucky that it won’t involve chemotherapy or radiotherapy which was a big worry for me at the start.
“The thought of raising a young child whilst going through such physically and mentally demanding treatment was daunting but now it’s a case of keeping an eye on the growth with regular scans and blood tests.”
You can see some of Lisa’s projects on her Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/along_came_lainey/.
We are so grateful to Lisa for telling her story. We know there are many more examples of people using crafting as a form of escape and distraction. And so we wish everyone strength and courage on this International Women’s Day.
Read about more women inspiring Cricut creators in this blog post on our US blog.