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Stuck or Knitting?

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Stuck? Or knitting?

So, why do you knit or crochet? Why do you pick up sticks or hooks and string and sit for hours creating something that can be purchased at the local big box store for $19.95...or less?

Why do any of us knit or crochet (or do anything creative: paint, sing, dance, play an instrument....)? I absolutely cannot speak for everyone, but my fingers need sticks and string at the end of the day. I need the time to let myself be still. We live in such a fast paced world. Every minute of our time is committed to 'doing' something. There is always a deadline or a to-do list on our minds. But, in the middle of the chaos, we all need the minute or two, or hour or two, to stop and be still and breathe. And, that minute is what knitting gives me.

Recently I find I'm knitting to remind myself to breathe and take life a moment (or a stitch) at a time.

I hear people say all the time, 'I can't knit, I don't sit still that long.' Or 'I'm not patient enough to crochet.' Knitting gives me patience.

In the past week I was at the Yarn Truck's mechanic for a state inspection. I was only there for 40 minutes and it is a lovely calm space. No roaring TV's. Lovely people, *shout out to #beachreadyauto*. But I had to sit, and wait, because my world has changed and I can't just 'drop off the truck' and pick it up later. I drive it to a mechanic I love, and I wait. And I knit. And it gives purpose to the time I have to be patient and wait. I knitted about an inch or two on a great pair of socks in SeaStar, "Leaving Ocracoke". Time well spent. Truck is cleared for another year, and I enjoyed 40 minutes with one of my favorite yarns, on one of my favorite projects, and bonus that it was in a place where I know that I am loved.

I should have taken the Durango to Beach Ready, but I was in a pinch and the 'oil change' light kept shouting. So I took the cursed beast to the local quick lube for an oil change. I was met with talking heads on some news feed (I won't say what station) and a crowded waiting room. Everyone else was glued to the noise on the tv, or glued to the screen on their phone. I was glued to my current crochet project. The oil change only took 30 minutes, but I worked about 6 rows on my project. Time well spent. I wasn't 'stuck' I was creating something beautiful.

Then the dreaded DMV. There is this silly rule about changing your address on your drivers license when you change your actual address. I'm behind by a month, but I thought I could get the address change done quickly one morning this week. -What part of 'quickly' and DMV don't go together?!?!- so I head out early, I'm at the local DMV at 9:45. And there are 27 people in the waiting area in front of me. I'm an optimist. I get my number, find a seat and act hopeful. And I work on the lovely crochet shawl that has me inspired. 40 minutes pass. There is not an ice cube's chance in Hades that I'm going to get the address change on my license done this day. So, I watch the clock on the phone of the very bored person next to me, and when I realize it is 'fish or cut bait' time, I head out. I spent 40 minutes in a beastly uncomfortable chair, but I had my hook and string. I wasn't playing Candy Crush on my phone. I was creating a real live, lovely garment. My time was not wasted, I was creating a thing of beauty.

We all have times that we are trapped by our environment. Trapped at the doctor's office, waiting for your appointment. Time sitting in the car pool lane waiting for your kiddo. Time waiting in line or for a function to start. Even time stuck in front of the TV. Your person loves football, you love time with your person, so even if you don't love football, you might hang out and knit socks. We all have time when we are are kind of 'stuck' - we are bound to be where we are for some length of time we cannot control.

And that's why I knit and crochet. I knit to make all those 'stuck' hours have purpose. If I have sticks or hooks and string, in that stuck time at the dentist, I can work on a sock for a person I love. Or I can knit on a prayer shawl for a friend in need, or crochet hats for tiny little preemies. I knit in my 'stuck' moments to get UNstuck. Now I'm not just doing time, fiddling with my phone, waiting for my turn. I'm creating something. I'm knitting something that will be for SOMEONE, and that gives value to time that would be otherwise wasted.

I know I can go buy socks, or a scarf or a wrap for my person in need. But knowing they could wrap themselves in something hand crafted with love makes all the difference. The love we put into our craft is what elevates it above big box purchases. Even the lowly dishcloth becomes a thing of great art when hand knit or crocheted. The receiver knows that it was made with love, stitched with thought and heart and even prayers, perhaps. And, if that dishcloth is used to wash the dishes that a family gathered together to break bread and share time on, then, that to me, that is time well spent.

So I knit to conquer 'stuck' and not be frustrated by lines and waiting for things I can't control. Now, I am creative, and clever, and thoughtful and a million other things. I am not *stuck* any more. I have my sticks or hooks and string and I have purpose. I can create a thing of beauty, and I can connect to the people that I love.

That, my friends, is time well spent.

In sticks and hooks and string,

xoxo-j


 

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