Naknicromo day 4: How long have you been knitting?

I started knitting sometime in 2000, as mentioned in yesterday’s post. I’ve been at it pretty steadily since then, though I have had stretches where I’ve not had any projects underway, such as when I’ve been wrapped up in job changes, moving, or dealing with the negative things life sometimes throws at you. But somehow, I feel like the roll I’ve been on lately, the satisfaction I’ve felt with my finished objects, and the wonderful feeling I get just walking into my favorite yarn shop will keep me from putting my knitting aside for any length of time. I might not be so gung-ho if we have another steamy summer, but I’ll be sure to have lots of smaller projects in the queue so I can keep at it even in the warmest of weather.

Something I noticed that’s not on this challenge is the question, “Why did you start knitting?” I already talked about my admiration for my colleague’s finished works as the reason I asked her to teach me to knit, but there was something bigger at work for me at the time. Living in Germany, not knowing very many people, missing New York City and my friends there, and realizing that I’d probably be spending most of my vacation time flying back to the States to visit my family, as they really weren’t going to be coming to see me much (I give kudos to my mom, who did come see me once in the year and a half I was there), I sank into a pretty deep funk. When I’d first arrived in Germany, I tried to strike up conversations with folks in some of the local pubs, as I had always easily done in Brooklyn, despite being an introvert, and despite New Yorkers’ reputation as being standoffish. But it never worked. There was not much of a warm, welcoming community in my new home.

So, many nights were spent in my apartment, watching too much TV – it was a good language exercise, but it did nothing to improve my outlook. The knitting, I thought, would at least give me a means to keep my hands busy on those lonely nights at home. And it worked like a charm. I looked forward to adding more length to my goofy scarf, and, once I felt that it should stop growing, I got a little thrill from seeking out my next project.

I like spending time alone at home now. It no longer goes hand-in-hand with loneliness. Quite the opposite – I look forward to my relaxing evenings at home with my knitting and my cats. It’s a creative outlet, it’s a balm after a taxing day of work, and it results in some really awesome wearable art. I can’t think of anything better.

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