A skirt, take 2.

I knit.  Saying that you are a knitter isn’t quite the same as saying you are a preacher or a teacher, because people don’t define you by the fact that you take up needles and yarn and turn it into . . . something.  But maybe they should.

The one and only time I made a pair of gloves, I had just about finished the second glove.  All I had left to do was cut the yarn and work the tail back into the glove. But something made me take a second look.  I got out the first glove and put them side by side.  Then, I laughed.  I laughed so hard that I howled.  I had made not one, but two left hand gloves.

The real surprise came when I told several friends about this.  “I guess I’ll rip it out tonight and start again,” I said.   They shook their heads.  “I’d just make two right hand gloves.  I couldn’t stand to have wasted all that time.”

Time spent knitting isn’t time wasted, even when I have to pull something apart and try again.  It isn’t time wasted because I love the process – the act of pulling one loop of yarn through another and coming up with something entirely different in the end.

Yet, it is more than that.  To me, knitting is relaxation. If I sit on our bench outside and knit, I can listen to the sounds of wind and birds and children.  If I am too worked up to pray, I knit and purl and purl and knit.  As I busy my hands, the task of knitting takes up a certain amount of mental power.  Apparently, it takes up just enough brain space to keep my mind busy while simultaneously freeing me from the clutter of scattered thoughts.  Because of this, knitting is one of those times that I can hear that still, small voice.

Having  to re-knit a glove or a sock or even part of a sweater isn’t a catastrophe.  It is simply time to sit quietly and hear what needs to be heard.

When  I define myself as a knitter, I’m saying much more than “I make things out of yarn.” I am also saying, “I listen and, sometimes, I hear.”