I am sorry for being a bitch right now, but I’m knitting. I can’t be bothered. As in, whatever you do right now, DON’T BOTHER ME…please. Don’t tell me where you are going, I don’t care. Don’t ask me a question, even if it’s simple. Do I want to walk with you to CVS? No! Do I want to go buy some food for the empty refrigerator? NO! I don’t want to go out- ever— I just want to stay home and knit.
Please, don’t sit down next to me on the couch, and don’t put on the TV. Actually, honey, don’t you have somewhere to be? I love you, but you are very distracting, and even though I know you have the right to be in the house with me, I am not sure I accept that right now.
Oh, why did I listen to them, these Women Who Knit? They said I could do it. They said I would learn new techniques. They said it would be hard, but not too hard. And I believed them.
I joined in on the fun of the autumn Westknits (https://www.westknits.com/) Mystery Shawl knit-a-thon on the day it started three weeks ago. Knitters from all over the world are participating! We are knitting a shawl, in parts. Participants have picked their three colors, but don’t know what the entire shawl will look like. A new section of the pattern is revealed every week for a month. Three sections have been revealed so far. I am halfway through the first. They say it’s not a race. Good thing.
Admittedly I have gone off the deep end, and I might be there for say, oh, maybe 6 months or so (if I am able to continue with my current frenzied rate of progress, which is doubtful). I want to quit, to go back to the relaxed knitter I once was, making baby sweaters and blankets. I was able to knit and talk, listen to a podcast, or watch TV, and I would happily rise off the couch (so long as I was allowed to “just finish this row.”) But now that I have started this project, I can’t quit. I am on a mission to completion, and completion seems very, very far away.
I am counting the stitches until the next “slip slip knit, pass one over.” I am concentrating on the “slip, slip knit.” I am trying to remember what row I just finished, what pattern repeat I am on. I might lose a stitch. I might split a stitch. I might skip a “make one left.” I live in fear of messing up and having to stop everything to spend an afternoon at the knitting store, losing precious hours while waiting impatiently for a more experienced knitter to fix what I have messed up. And as all knitters know, knitting stores do not hold emergency hours.
I don’t want to exercise, I don’t want to clean up my breakfast dishes, I don’t want to answer emails, I don’t want to visit your mother. Do I even want to babysit my grandson? I take the fifth. And the worst of this is that I idiotically convinced my best friend to do the knit-a thon-with me. Now she hates me. I sure miss her as my best friend. But I have no time for friends anymore, so maybe it’s for the best.
I might lose everything I love, but in the end, I will prevail. I will have a new shawl, replete with mistakes, in colors that I am not sure I really like. When I finish this shawl, it will be the only thing I ever wear. Even if it is hideous.
Enough with this writing! I want to be knitting! I want to finish what feels like pattern repeat four thousand and seven. I am sure I could have completed another row or two instead of dithering on about my misery. Typos and mistakes be damned! I may make one right, but it won’t be in this essay.