My life has been crazy lately. I have been dealing with a quadruple super whammy of stressful events.
1. House renovations. Yes, the dreaded renovations – lovely when they’re done, hell while they’re happening. We’ve had all the windows in the house replaced, and then the kitchen was gutted and rebuilt. Plus, various other things – fences torn down and put up again, the garage redone, etc.
2. The beautiful 22-year old daughter decides to backpack by herself through Eastern Europe syndrome. Emma had a ball; she visited 16 cities in 9 countries in 5 weeks. She had a huge variety of adventures, many of which she probably should not have mentioned to her parents until long after the fact. She had 5 weeks of fun; I had 5 weeks of fretting.
3. Trying to write a master’s thesis while working full time. Enough said.
4. Making a major change in life direction, while fretting at every opportunity. (More on this in a future post.)
We all know that knitting is good for stress, right?
During the renovations, we were offered the use of some friends’ house. We packed up a suitcase and moved in, and right in the midst of all of these other stressful things, we lived for three weeks out of suitcase in someone else’s house. I took one knitting project with me: the beautiful Laelia cardigan which I am knitting in fingering weight yarn. This cardigan has lace panels. These lace panels require concentration. It turns out that knitting may be good for stress, but, in my case at least, knitting lace is not.
A while back, I wrote a post called “How to be stupid at knitting” in which I told the sorry tale of an incredibly stupid knitting adventure. Stupidity strikes again! I knit two rows and realized that I had made a mistake in the lace. I painstakingly tinked two rows, a stitch at a time. I knit two more rows; again with the tinking. I finally decided that it was crazy to attempt to knit this beautiful lace cardigan in the state I was in. I wished so hard that I had a simple stockinette or garter project on the needles; something that went round and round, mindlessly. Every day, I glanced longingly at my knitting and thought, if only I could do some mindless knitting, but all I have with me is this cardigan with lace panels, and I can’t knit lace right now.
So, I spent three weeks without knitting a stitch. Yesterday, days after moving back home, I had one of those Eureka moments: I COULD HAVE JUST KNIT THE SLEEVES! There are few things as mindless as knitting sleeves, in the round, in fingering weight. I could have totally done that, even in a state of stress.
These photos show what the sweater looked like a month ago. Unfortunately, they also show what it looks like today.