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This last year has been interesting, and not necessarily in a good way. It’s been tough. There has been far too much death and illness, including the passing of a few close family friends and Alex’s father.  (Alex and I are fine, health-wise. Don’t worry.) We’re getting through it. As usual, knitting has been helping.

In July, we had to go back to a little town in Washington to go to one friend’s funeral. I spent a good deal of my early childhood there, and I had a pretty happy childhood.  But it was…oddly uncomfortable. Alex and I were there early so that we could get lunch and walk around a little bit beforehand. Just as I was getting the Unreasoning Heebie-Jeebies, there it was – a yarn store.

It’s amazing how certain places are there right when you need them. My anxiety melted the moment I walked through the doorway. I was in a familiar place, even though I’d never been there before. Just being inside, thinking and talking about things that had nothing to do with death and mourning, calmed my soul. It was strange to think about later, but I was so grateful in that moment.  I don’t think the nice ladies in the shop realized how much I needed to just be around beautiful wool.  I don’t think I realized how much I needed to be in that place until I was there.

Knitting is incredibly comforting for me.  I think it has something to do with the rhythm of knitting itself.  Sometimes, I just need something simple – garter stitch or a pair of plain socks.  At other times, I need something that requires all of my attention, like a complicated lace shawl with lots of charts.  Simple knitting can be soothing, but sometimes it allows too many other thoughts to occupy my mind.

No matter what, knitting has definitely been my friend over these past few months.  It’s been there during long waiting times in hospitals and quiet times at home, as well as those fun moments with friends (and there have been plenty of those, as well)!

Do you use knitting to get you through the tough times?  Let me know in the comments.