March 9, 2008

Someone asked me a couple days ago how I got into knitting. I hadn’t really thought about it. I’d wanted to knit for so long that the why, or how, never really crossed my mind. Just being happy that I finally took the initiative to learn how. But when asked, I realized, I spent 20 years consciously wanting to learn to knit. When I was 8, my mother tried to teach me to crochet, and I really wasn’t getting it. It wasn’t her fault, or mine, really. It was just that I didn’t want to crochet, I wanted to knit. I knew I would be a knitter, if I only had the opportunity.

I tried to explain this to her at the time, and I think I didn’t explain it correctly (I mean, I was 8), or she thought I was just sulking, or her own dislike of knitting influenced her, but she shot me down pretty quickly. I did eventually learn to crochet when I was 20 or so and a friend of my mom’s decided to teach me (IIRC, because I was fidgeting too much). I enjoy the quickness of it, and some of the things it can produce that knitting can’t. But not the process. I’m guessing that’s why I learned crochet, and then didn’t pick up another hook for eight years.

I’m a process knitter. I have no second sock syndrome. I’m cool to frog things and start over, other than my own internal sense of deadline or production quota (sometimes I feel like I’m trying to make up for lost time, here). I will make the same pattern over and over just to get it perfect. I do sometimes get cranky at myself for screw ups, and cranky at others when I’m interrupted while counting (or tinking), but it’s getting more and more rare.

I have just always wanted to knit. I don’t know where it comes from, or how I got into it, or anything. It was just in me, waiting for me to get my shit together, pick up some pointy sticks and go. As for why that moment, finally? Well, it’s complicated, but it has a lot to do with infertility treatments, and healing, and just needing it to a degree that it outweighed my self doubt.

So I guess the only answer I have is that I never did get into it — I have always been a knitter, I just haven’t always knit.


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