Stories from a life in progress.


Most of my hobbies involve working with yarn, and it's rare that I only have one thing to work on at a time.  Between knitting, spinning, crocheting, and weaving, there's often a large number of things-in-progress scattered around, waiting for me to get back to them.  There are probably 10 or 15 things-in-progress here now, and countless ideas waiting for me to start them.

Yesterday I dug out a skein of lovely handspun yarn, airy and bouncy and perfect to knit a new scarf, because it was cold outside yesterday and reminded me that I want a scarf to keep with my winter coat, to fill in a bit of a gap at the collar.  I wound that yarn into a ball and paged through some pattern books, looking for inspiration.  I think I know how I will knit it up.

But I didn't start the scarf, and this morning I put the yarn away.  It's still ready to go, but I don't want to start it yet.  My attention is elsewhere: a pair of socks more than half done, the second sock quickly growing toward the heel.  I find that I don't want to start something new.  I want to finish these socks.

I realized why I didn't care about scarf-knitting while I was writing in my journal this morning, and found I could hardly even write the word "finish" without underlining it, emphasis to match my intensity of feeling about it.  I want to finish these socks.  I am tired of having so many half-done things in my life; I want to finish them.  I want to finish SOMETHING.  Socks will do.  I'm not casting on a new thing, even a useful new thing.  I want to finish what I'm doing first.

I still can't write finish without emphasizing it.

I'm going to have to live with half-done things for a while yet, and probably close to forever.  There's always something new to do, and I get bored without a steady stream of new things to think about and work on.  But I also need to feel progress, and I really, really love the point where I can say Finished.  If the only thing I can finish right away is a pair of socks, then I will at least do that.