Then there's the usual, every day stuff: Attempting to give my all into being a good "stay at home mum" – while at the same time secretly plotting new workshops and blog entries; building a swing / slide activity centre thing – but forgetting that I might like somewhere to knit, I mean sit, while the fun ensues; ensuring that the cats keep their freshly caught "take out" out of the house; teaching the kittens to be yarn-friendly; confining one of the chickens as she's starting to eat the eggs – a habit that can easily spread to the rest of the flock unless quickly curtailed; knitting for a craft fair; homing a lorry load of furniture from my parents (did I mention that they're moving?) – which, with their generous help, has mostly been achieved but for a few remaining boxes; starting to prepare for the "Modern Quilting Retreat" I'm attending on Sunday (as in a few days time)...
Now you know me, I like to knit in such unsettled times. Not for craft fairs. Not for work. Not because "I should", but for fun. Pure pleasure. The disappointing news that my sock workshop in Manchester has been cancelled means that the deadline for completing the second sock could be moved to October when I'll be in Sheffield. Now someone more akin to my mother's sensibilities would continue knitting and finish the sock regardless. However, someone like me is more likely to be panic knitting in the week up to the workshop (despite this never being a good idea with lace) or taking the "pair" (one sock finished, one not) as a teaching aid. It also seems that, unless I get my skates on, the jumper that I'm knitting Oldest Son will not actually ever fit him. And whilst there is a Youngest Son, he wasn't the intended first recipient of this garment. So there are at least two projects I should be knitting. And with quite imminent deadlines. So I'm not sure that I can justify the fun knitting.
That said, the new Rowan Magazine is out (have you seen it?) and so I should be knitting something from there as part of my "uniform" (this "should" is said with a definite twinkle in the eye). I was sorely tempted by some of the amazing colour work but have since been persuaded that in the interests of meeting my aim of not just knitting but actually wearing a current garment, I should try something that knits up quickly. Big Wool here I come!
You'll realise, of course, that all of this knitting-related over-thinking is just me seeking a distraction from the rest of my life, as I haven't actually knitted in days. Tis strange that this is one element of my life that I can control, and yet I haven't got the energy or will power to do so. So time continues to pass and the rows remain unknitted. If I could knit my sister or my brother-in-law a more locally based solution, would I? No, of course not. Okay, maybe not. This is part of the rich fabric of our lives, the opportunities sought and taken, the fresh starts, the abandonment of eldest sisters in deepest, darkest Scotland('s Borders) – there'll be tapestries depicting these tales on walls in homes for years to come. I did it, for goodness sake, and everyone supported me.
It's just that I find the build-up to a big, emotional event difficult to cope with – possibly even more so than the occasion itself. I find these times exhausting, the near-constant anxiety of having to face the appointed day head – and heart - on. The last time I see my sister before she leaves; saying goodbye to my other sister and her family, mine and our best friends and playmates. Turns out that I've probably already been to the family home for the last time and, I confess, there is some relief in knowing that. But take a creative journey, and quite the opposite is true: The excitement in planning the details of the project, it's exact design, style and colour; the thrill of casting on; the anticipation as the fabric grows; the sense of accomplishment as the first section and then others, fall off the needles; the pride in finishing.
So this truly is a time to be knitting. A little positiveness might help to off-set some of the other. There's no harm in trying. And, who knows? Oldest Son might actually get his jumper.