“Look, I’m almost done!” I proclaimed proudly as I held up my nearly complete lace cardigan. Just 3 more rows of 1×1 ribbing on the hem, and I could cast off and wear my lovely mint green creation. After weaving in the ends. And blocking it overnight. Even when you’re done knitting, you’re still not actually done.
“Wow, how long has that taken?” my Dad asked.
“About two months.”
“Wow,” he said again, “you’re really patient”.
Now, this struck me as funny, because in my mind completing an entire lace cardigan in two months had been remarkably fast. In fact, a few days later I texted a picture of myself wearing it to the knitting buddy who had been with me when I purchased the yarn, and her response was, “damn you’re amazing”. But when I thought about it a bit more, I realized the absurdity of considering something that took 2 months to achieve anything other than glacially slow. It’s 2017 after all; if it’s coming from the right warehouse, I could buy a mint green lace cardigan on Amazon right now and have it in hand before bedtime tonight.
But I didn’t set out to knit my cardigan because it was the most efficient way to obtain an article of clothing. I did it because I love to knit, the pattern looked challenging and fun (Hitofude by Hiroko Fukatsu), and the yarn was scrumptious (Madeline Tosh Twist Light in Havana).
(This was my triumphant announcement photo sent to my knitting buddy)
And as I thought about it, I realized how much knitting and motherhood are exactly alike. Neither knitting nor motherhood is a terribly efficient endeavor; ask any woman who has carried a child, and she will tell you about how relative time is, and that it slows all the way down in the last month of pregnancy. Adoption can be an even longer and more assiduous journey. If all you wanted was a cute little creature to love and raise, a puppy is a much faster solution that will have absolutely zero impact on how your favorite jeans fit. And as we’ve already established, two months is considered “quick” for knitting a cardigan that could have been bought in two minutes.
By both knitting and mothering, one is often tossed from a high of “this is the best and most beautiful thing I’ve ever done in my life!” to a low of “what was I smoking when I thought I was capable of pulling this off?” in approximately 7.4 seconds.
As both a knitter and a mother, people will sometimes peer at you suspiciously as you say, “I really do love this” while tears ruin your mascara.
In knitting and mothering, you have no choice but to faithfully do the same thing over and over and over again, day in and day out, and trust the designer that you’ll eventually end up with the finished product you dreamed of when you first thought, “what if…?”.
So, I knit and I mother, one stitch at a time. I am an expert at neither, but if I am anything, it’s a try-er! Knit Up A Child is about my life doing both. I’d love for you to join me!