Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Prodigal Knitter

This past Saturday, I was facing a 3-hour train ride with no new reading material.  Desperate, I rummaged through my Ravelry queue and came up with a fingerless mitt pattern that would use some sock yarn I had handy.  No harm in trying it, I figured.  But really, it was a leap of faith.

You see, there's something been happening lately that I haven't admitted to you folks.  In fact, I've had a hard time admitting it to myself.  Recently I had to face up to a disturbing fact: I'd lost interest in knitting.

These meant nothing to me.
Remember, I have numerous bags of knitting stashed around the house.  There is an entire dresser devoted to storing yarn and knitting/crochet sundries in my bedroom.  Many hours of my life over the past 6 years have been spent deciphering patterns, searching for missing needles, and perusing websites like WEBS and Knitpicks.  So this sudden discovery that I felt no urge to pick up the needles, no urge whatsoever to cast on a new project, was unsettling, to say the least.

It all started 2 weeks ago, when I worked up the nerve to confront an uncompleted lace shawl project that had been haunting me.  Realizing that it held no interest for me anymore, I frogged it (meaning, I pulled it all out, for those of you who aren't hep with the knitting lingo).  Ah, I thought, that'll do the trickThat unwanted project was blocking my creativity.  Now I'll go find something I WANT to knit.

Was this what was in store for me?
Only, I couldn't.  I clicked listlessly through endless pages of patterns on Ravelry and nothing piqued my interest.  It's summer, I reasoned to myself.  Maybe I just need to crochet with some nice cool cotton.  A market bag, maybe?   But, no, not even that could entice me.  Apparently, my love affair with all things yarn was over.  Was it turning 50 that did it?  Menopause?  Do crafters have midlife crises that cause them to dump their needlework and take up bungee jumping instead?  All I knew was that I just couldn't fake it - I didn't want to knit.

So I ignored my yarn.  I know!  It's a weird way to live.  I read all my birthday books (6 in one week).  I felt strangely content with my new post-knitting life.  Maybe that whole knitting thing had just been a phase, a fluke, I thought.  It's sort of a relief, actually.  No more cruising yarn shops; no more wasting hours of my life on Ravelry, looking for the perfect market bag pattern...

But, Reader, I'm happy to report that, on that train ride to my Dad's, the magic returned.  I knitted contentedly all the way there.  I knitted while I was trying to cope with the voodoo priestess.  I knitted on the way back, glad I had something to do other than watch soaps on an IPad, as my seatmate was doing.  The handwork was comforting, like a homecoming.  And, truth to tell, I was relieved to find myself back in the knitting saddle, as it were -- because I really didn't want to try that bungee jumping.

[Yarn image: Living Large With Less]
[Bungee image: Spirit of the Himalayas


  1. That's really interesting. I'm always fascinated by what interests different people have, and sometimes things do come and go. I don't think we realize how arbitrary that can be because when we are involved in something we enjoy it's hard to imagine it being any other way.

    I like knitting but have never gotten past doing a basic scarf. I always imagined when I got old and confined to a chair I would dive in and learn to do it right then.

  2. It comes and goes for me too. Lately I haven't knit much at all, but I'm planning to bring it on the plane with me this weekend. I can only carry so many books, and I don't have a Kindle.

  3. Things like that come and go for me, too. I used to cross-stitch all the time, but I haven't done that in a year and a half (moving to a new house with new walls didn't help). I miss it now...

    Glad you got your knitting mojo back.

  4. I was thinking that it's SUMMER and yarn implies mittens, hats, scarves, socks, which are for WINTER, so knitting doesn't go with summer. But I am not a knitter, so what do I know? i greatly admire what other people are able to create. And it would seem that knitting would be a great way to bring calm and order to a stressful situation.

  5. I'm thinking that we all go through phases and perhaps I will someday pick up that counted cross-stitch that I was making for my husband's 10th anniversary gift. Who cares if it's been 16 years since I've done more than peek in that bag?
    Well, okay, maybe everything *except* cross-stitching. I know that my desire to quilt and scrapbook and bead usually happen at different times. Not always at convenient times... but at least they don't all itch at once!

    I used to wish that I could knit... until I actually tried it. Some things are better left to the gifted folks like you! I'm glad that particular bug has bit you once again. ;)

  6. You should knit a bungee jumping cord and harness. Both hobbies at once.

  7. Perhaps you just needed a break, so you could come back to it refreshed!

  8. I love knitting, especially starting out with a new project. It's one of the few productive activities you can do while watching TV. I even mastered simultaneous knitting/breastfeeding/TV watching.

  9. For me knitting is such a seasonal sport--but it sounds like you found your mojo once more and if it gives you peace, you should do it!