Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Silencing the Inner Monologue

I've always written. As a teenager, when hormones and confusion and the incredible Splendor-in-the-Grass-ness of it all really got to me, I'd let it all out on paper rather than talk to anyone about it. I guess I was too embarrassed to share my feelings with someone else, even though in retrospect I know that had I chosen to share my feelings with someone, they would probably have been going through the exact same thing. Anyway, I'd just write in a frenzy. I used to call them "Paper Trips", and they made me feel better when I couldn't take it anymore. I think I've still got some stashed away somewhere.

Lately I've been doing a lot of thinking, and most of that thinking has taken the form of writing in my mind. It's kind of hard to put into words (which is sort of ironic), but it's as though I'm constantly telling myself stories, exploring possibilities in a literary format.

One of the things I was musing upon today was how, in many ways, knitting really is like life something the Harlot has pointed out much more eloquently than I ever could). It takes practice and patience, but with persistence, you eventually build up a set of skills that lead to satisfaction with a specific task.

Another way it can be similar, I've found, is that no matter how much you love what you're knitting, you'll eventually hit a boring stretch of stockinette that will make you want to impale yourself on your own needles.

And that's when it occurred to me that, in some ways, it's a good thing that life is most definitely NOT like knitting. Because when that happens with knitting, you can just look at your stash and cast on for something new. That doesn't cause the first project you were working on to self-destruct (as would presumably occur were you to take that same approach in life). You don't rip back the project you were working on first, you're just giving it a timeout. Taking a break, going with the flow, owning your own knitting, whatever you want to call it.

Whenever I hear from certain friends, people I used to be really close with who are now out in the world living completely different lives, I always get to thinking about MY life, examining the choices I've made, wondering what it might have been had I chosen another path (this usually occurs when I'm in a particularly boring week at work).

Don't get me wrong. I love my life, my husband, my children. I'm exactly where I wanted to be, and I don't regret anything. But don't you ever just wonder what might have been?

And that's part of what makes knitting so appealing to me, I guess. Because I don't HAVE to wonder. I can follow every passion, every whim. I can pursue every floozy who strikes my fancy. I'm not letting anyone down, I don't owe anybody a thing when it comes to my knitting. It's mine.

So go ahead, knitters. Cast on. You know you wanna....


Sinéad said...

I think everyone goes through these peiods of self-analysis from time to time. Like you said, usually when it's a quiet/boring time. You wouldn't be human if you didn't wonder what if....

birana said...

I think it’s just normal too to have those times when you think and think and think again about your life and your choices, about what you really want to be and what you’ve been too. Knitting won’t let you down and it’s sometimes a kind of therapy.. personally that's what helped me to stay in Montreal for my job, because I did not have any friends and not so much family (except my parents in-law)here at first. Then i found I had my cat, my knitting and my boyfriend home(he’s last of this list because he’s not always home as my cat and my knittingssssss :)

Knit and Purl Mama said...

I never question what could have been, because then it'll just lead to depression or whatever. You have to embrace the now... and think of the future!

Ok, now I want to go cast on something new!