A year ago today, I was somewhere in Spain, walking my pilgrimage, my Camino. Without looking at my journal, I can't tell you where exactly I was, but I can tell you that I had already injured myself by this point. I walked in pain, but by God, I WALKED, up to 30 kms a day. I made myself do things that I knew were impossible, I just convinced myself I could do it.
A year later....no exotic local, no reason to keep a journal. I am sitting in my livingroom, knitting a sock.
I am forty years old. I have been a knitter for almost thirty of those years, and have knit more sweaters than I can even remember. Sweaters, knit on two needles, are easy. But dude, SOCKS? Socks knit on five needles? That shit is HARD.
About six months ago, I decided I wanted to learn to knit socks. My Mum spent 20 minutes trying to teach me how to work with soooo many needles, and then we got distracted and moved on to something else. I came home, tried, and failed.
Five months ago, I decided to learn how to spin my own yarn out of fleece. Turns out I have (so my teacher said) a natural hand for it, my yarn is uniform and (quite frankly) gorgeous. I decided to tackle the socks again, FAIL.
Three months ago, I taught a total "virgin" how to knit in less than an hour. Encouraged by my knitterly genius, I picked up all the scary sock needles again. MAJOR FAIL.
I just didn't get it, I mean I understood in theory what should be happening but I couldn't make my hands, the needles, and the wool do what I wanted, damn it.
I kept trying, and I kept failing. I do not enjoy failing at ANYTHING, by the way, never mind failing at anything as "stupid" as knitting. I mean, come on, there are hundreds of thousands of six year olds all over the planet who can knit socks. But me? Not so much.
Yesterday I got angry. I was pissed off at myself and at the universe over my inability to create something so basic. I decided that, no matter how ugly or uneven or even totally UNWEARABLE the end product might be, TODAY was the day I was going to knit socks, goddamn it.
Twenty four hours later, I have four inches of the most beautiful, perfect sock on my needles. I mean, I want to rub this bad boy all over my lady parts, it's THAT perfect.
Turns out all it took for me to have my break-through was for me to get really angry at it, and decide it wasn't stronger than me.
And if you think this post is really about socks then you're not paying attention.