Some of you who know me know that I’ve been holding onto this one for a while – I keep waiting until I no longer have a twitch in my eye when I think of it; but it’s been months and I’m still twitchy. So I should go ahead and vent about this and then maybe I can let it go.
A few months ago I was asked, and not in a friendly way, “I mean, have you seen the people who knit?!”. And it truly was one of those moments where I was screaming in my head, DO NOT ANSWER THAT. DO NOT SAY ANYTHING OUT LOUD. HUSH YO’ MOUF.
Because yes, duh, I own a yarn store. Of course I have seen the people who knit. I mean, I get what this person meant. I get what they were implying. And I have to choose to believe that this person is just ignorant– because if for a moment I thought this person really was trying to insult my people, was really trying to get a dig in, there would be flaming bags of poo involved in my retaliation.
Because I have seen the people who knit. People who knit are just as wonderful, just as frustrating, just as giving, just as stingy, just as mercurial, just as stubborn, just as joyful, just as afraid, just as beautiful, just as mean, as people who don’t.
People who knit are young. They are college students, high school students, middle school students. They knit because one of their parents knits, they knit because one of their parents doesn’t knit, they knit because they learned in scouts, they knit because they want to make something none of their friends have, they knit because one of their friends does.
People who knit are middle-aged. They knit because a favorite aunt does. They knit because they no longer have a grandmother who does. They knit because it gives them a connection to the small town they miss. They knit because the social aspects of knitting groups gives them an outlet they miss having moved to a big city. They knit because they are having babies. They knit because they lost a baby. They knit because they have a cousin, a sister, a friend who is having a baby. They knit because they need a creative outlet. They knit because the math appeals to their scientific brains.
People who knit are old. They knit because they want to pass something on to their children, to their grandchildren, to their great-grandchildren. They knit because they always said they would when they worked, and now they’ve retired. They knit because it calms them while they’re losing someone they love. They knit because a grandparent taught them and they want to teach someone else. They knit because they want to mark their place in the world. They knit because they have always knit. They knit because all of their friends knit. They knit because it was on their list of things to do and they’ve just now gotten around to it.
People who knit are healthy. They run marathons and come home and knit while resting their feet. They knit at campfires after a long day of kayaking. They knit after a good crew meeting as they ice their legs. They photograph their knitting from the tops of mountains and the sides of lakes. They knit for their sick friends because they have the energy and the love.
People who knit are fighting sickness. They knit when the tiredness from the chemo isn’t too bad. They knit in the waiting rooms of countless doctors. They knit when the arthritis lets them. They knit when the nausea isn’t overwhelming. They knit because it’s good physical therapy. They knit because it’s good cognitive therapy. They knit for their healthy friends because they want to leave a piece of themselves behind when it’s their time to leave the party. They knit because the knitted item will be around for their unseen grandchildren. They knit so that they will be remembered.
And isn’t that what most people want whether they knit or not? To be remembered? To be thought of lovingly? To be missed when not around? Who in their right mind thinks “gosh, I hope I piss people off so much that my last remaining friends have to come behind me and clean up the emotional wreckage I leave in my wake”?! Not too many people I know, that’s for sure.
Anyway. Yes. I have. I have seen the people who knit. I’m proud to be one of them.
You see us as you want to see us… – John Hughes