Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Why I knit

"Knit on with confidence and hope, through all crisis."
~Elizabeth Zimmermann

In one of my first blog entries, I mentioned my friend Kirsten, who inspired me to pick up knitting after a girls' weekend in Chicago. The rhythmic movement of the needles as she worked on that knitted tank sweater was almost hypnotic. Within a day after arriving home I was at the craft store picking up needles and yarn and seeking Kirsten's advice for a beginner project.

What I've found about knitting is that it's like meditation. It relieves stress, both physical and mental. It's therapeutic. 99% of what I knit I give away, either intentionally, or because someone admires what I've made. Knitting has helped me lose weight by preventing me from eating while watching television (58 lbs in two years). Knitting has lowered my blood pressure. Knitting has busied my hands during nervous waiting periods. Friendships have been born from my knitting. My knitting has brought comfort to others - most recently through chemo caps, baby sweaters and blankets.

When I'm stressed, I knit. Knit knit knit knit knit. When I'm lonely, I knit. When I'm depressed, I knit. It's so hard to stay in those moods when you're doing something that will turn out beautiful and be for someone else! When life is complicated, I knit. As the stitches come together, the complications unravel. It's magical, in a way.

Today I had the pleasure of having lunch with my Buddy B. Instead of eating lunch, we sat and visited with each other while I worked on the Irish Hiking Scarf. We talked about politics and Barack Obama's "The Audacity of Hope" which we both are reading. We talked about teacher burn-out in the building where I work. All the while I was knitting and cabling. "Is it hard to twist those stiches and make the cables?" he wanted to know. "I taught myself in one evening, in front of the TV," I told him, "so it's easier than I thought it would be."


Blogger Liz said...

Amen! Knitting keeps me sane. Then again, so do friends like you!

Friday, December 1, 2006 at 9:41:00 AM EST  

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