Well, it’s quiet here, so if there’s anyone reading I shall make a small and almost imperceptible wave of shy thanks.
Joy and creativity have been a tad sparse on the ground of late because I have been suffering a few health challenges this new year. I shall not go into detail as it is not very interesting and recounting it actually upsets me a tad, but I’ve had to step back from a few things that were detrimental to my health for a while and have been instructed to take some time off of work.
I thought that maybe I would be able to re-set myself in this time, to try to re-kindle those small embers of what I felt I had let fade, but it has been incredibly hard. I can’t seem to think or operate properly, perhaps because my mind is still busy sorting through everything that has passed and it will take time to clear the room in my head to let the ‘me’ things back in. Due to this my creativity has ebbed and my hands have remained idle. I have not been able to read, or watch TV – it’s like nothing has quite sunk in. Things are eased somewhat when Mr Awesome returns at the end of the day and I feel as if I am being loved and protected from the world, but I am having trouble with trying to regain the sense of calm self-understanding.
This all sounds quite negative, but I think it is sometimes part of the healing process, and yesterday I had a bit of a breakthrough. Jen of Jen A-C Knitwear had recently blogged about a sweater that she had fallen out of love with during the knitting. It was yellow, it had stripes and a kangaroo pocket, and looked to me to be all sunshine and happiness. There were a few elements of the sweater that she was unsure about and this brought about a reluctance to finish it, despite only being a sleeve and a half away from completion. Part of the inertia seemed to be driven by the uncertainty that Jen would wear and enjoy it. Ever helpful I spurred her along by very selflessly naming myself as a definite wearer of stripey yellow things should she not re-kindle the romance with the jumper of sunshine. In the end, though, Jen did not feel she had retained enough love for yellow stripes to finish, and actually asked me if I would like to finish knitting the jumper, if I’d wear it.
Sometimes, when life is challenging, every finishing line seems to be so far away as to be out of sight, and it is never more distant than at the outset. There can be a reluctance to start anything as with it comes the feeling (which feels almost assured when the world seems to be pitting its wits against you) that you will fail. But what if life could just drop you into that journey with the goal in plain sight?
So it is with this jumper. It would have been a mountain taller than I could dare to start with even a foot on the path to begin such a project, but the Jen A-C Helicopter of awesome (which is bright yellow) has dropped me with the summit in sight with a packed lunch for energy.
Somewhat surprisingly, the sweater Jen was working on is knit in 6 finely graded shades of yellow. From what I can tell the top starts with the extremes of shade (darkest and lightest) and moves through to the mid tones near the hemline, where the stripes blend closer together. I’ve studied the shades closely and the points at which they subtly change, and I have knit the second sleeve to the point where Jen left off the first sleeve to make sure that everything remains equal and closely matched. Now I have two half sleeves to finish, and that doesn’t seem like too strenuous a hike. It seems achievable, and it’s the first thing in a very long time that I can say that about.
Obviously Jen is very special and dear to me. She has been a kind and generous faraway friend throughout some great difficulties in my life, and is one of the people who I owe a great deal to for their support through a difficult period in the past. She is talented, and inspiring and wise. And she has awesome knitted things.
She has recently written a couple of posts about the yellow jumper above, and in the most recent: Letting Go, she has also decided to let go of something else: 4 skeins of 100% brushed suri alpaca from Frog Tree yarn and the Lingering Doubts shawl pattern to go with it. It looks beautiful, and would make someone very happy. If you think that person might be you, pop along to the blog post Letting Go and a Giveaway and leave a comment on Jen’s blog that will make her happy. The details are in the post, it is open worldwide and you have just under two weeks to help spread some happiness in the comments.