Friday, August 17, 2007

Why I Knit

by Lisa Louie

Dear-Readers: Hurricane Dean is nosing into the Gulf of Mexico and Mambocat must spend some time in contact with animal rescue folks in the event this storm heads our way. My co-conspirator in yarnly matters, Lisa Louie of Maui, guest-blogs today. This post was written before school let out for the summer....

Several years ago, an on-line survey asked the question “Why do you knit?”

My answer was “Because I HAVE to. I’m not sure why I have to; I just know that I do.”

I knit a lot, and I have been knitting for a relatively long time. Twenty years, which is almost exactly half my life. I’ve never stopped during that time, paused a few times, but never stopped. At this point, my knitting stops only long enough to go to work or buy groceries or other mundane necessities.

Why do I work? I have to have money to buy yarn, and support a few other of my hobbies, like eating regularly and living indoors. I work for a non-profit learning center, and much of my time is spent getting students of various ages through their homework, and teaching them what they need to get through their homework. Many of our students are, ahem, challenging, or as the PC police call them “high risk”. Whatever these students are called, they all seem to be having a “high maintenance” week. Shorter attention spans, slower to understand a concept, wiggly, fidgety, whiny, and so forth. I’m not sure if it’s because school is almost out, and they can smell the freedom of summer, if the planets are out of alignment, or what, but it’s been a week of much effort on my part, and little payoff in their learning. As I told my husband, getting learning into them has been like “pushing Jell-O up a hill. With a stick.”

After a week of “Jell-O pushing”, I got home last night and was completely brain dead, but my body was still wired. We had dinner, and went for a walk, but after that, I just had to knit. I only managed a few rounds on a sock, because my brain and my hands couldn’t seem to connect to get the stitches in the right order (it’s been a reaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaalllllllllllly bad week) but I needed it very, very badly just to try and restore some sort of balance to my brain. Soothe it, connect it with something it needs and try and untangle its connections so I can function again today. I think the knitting helped some, and I am going to take it with me to work today. I hope I don’t need it while I’m there, but at least if I have to go push some more Jell-O up a hill, at least I’ll have a good stick. A short, pointy stick. But it’s a good stick, and I’d much prefer to use it on yarn.



At 10:26 PM, Blogger Joan said...

I can totally agree with the need to knit. Being sidelined with shoulder surgery, even a few sts gives me some peace. Most non kniters don't get it, but I do.

At 8:43 AM, Anonymous Elizabeth D said...

Hi, Lisa - and Dez, the first thing I thought about when I checked the hurricane news this morning was you. Let's hope Dean gets tired . . .


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