I tried to explain to my husband what my blog was about. This was after I made the decision to even tell him that I was writing a blog. In doing my best to keep my anonymity, I still wanted to share my writing with the one person I love the most. He asked me if my blog was about my knitting, and I told him that actually, I hadn’t written a single post about my knitting. I immediately began to wonder why that is. Knitting is more than a hobby to me, it is a passion. Yet, I don’t feel the need to write post after post about all my various projects. There are lots of other people in the world that do, but it’s just not for me.
Then, the other evening, I was browsing my favorite group on Ravelry and the proverbial light bulb over my head clicked on. Ravelry is a website that, to put in a nutshell, is similar to Facebook for yarn crafters. There are many different groups you can join and chat in, features that allow you to showcase your projects, yarn, patterns, books, etc. There are so many different aspects of Ravelry that make it a haven of sorts, for people who make things out of yarn. Within the various groups, there is a swap group that I’m a member of. The premise is that you claim an offer of yarn, then you immediately offer some of your own yarn, and then someone claims what you offered, and on and on. Though I have swapped in this group for years, and have acquired quite an impressive selection of yarn as a result, it is in this group that I feel comfortably surrounded by friends. The ladies (and one or two men) in the group are incredibly supportive of one another and are just, all around, great people. While these are friendships that exist mostly in cyber space, there is nothing unrealistic about these people. When one of the members had her house completely destroyed by a wildfire, there was an online auction in the group to raise money for her. People auctioned off their own yarn and supplies out of the desire to help one of our own. The total amount raised was over 5,000 dollars.
So it was the other evening that I was reading posts in this group that I came across a post by a lady that was commenting on my hometown. She thought I lived in a particular city, but was disappointed to find out that I didn’t live there because she comes to that city every other week for work and was thinking it would be “so cool” to meet me in person. That’s when the light bulb came on. I was very touched by her comment and it made me realize that I don’t blog about knitting because it’s not so much the knitting that is worth blogging about, it’s the people that knit that are worth blogging about. Knitting in and of itself is very rewarding. Having a finished product that is beautiful and nicely made is worth the hours put into making it, but the best part of all comes when you’re around other knitters, whether virtually or in person. They are your enablers when you are trying to decide which yarn to buy, they are coordinators to help you decide which pattern goes best with the yarn you bought, they are your supporters when you are working on the project, they are your teachers when you make a mistake and can’t figure out how to fix it, and best of all, they are cheerleaders when you finish the project.
For so long I stayed within the virutal world of knitting. I enjoyed my Ravelry group because there is a comfort to not having to interact face-to-face with people. I was (and still am) more chatty with the people online than I am sometimes with people in “real life”. But there came a time when I was brave enough to step out of my comfort zone and go to the local yarn store for one of their Knit Nites, and sit around a table and talk about knitting with people I could actually see in front of me. It felt wonderful! I have had so much fun with the friends I’ve made going to that knit group. When I got married two years ago, though, I stopped going. I found that it was more comforting to stay at home with my husband on Friday nights. I stayed in touch with the friends I had made. Facebook and Ravelry kept the lines of communication open. It wasn’t until recently that I decided to go again. This group of people that I gladly call my friends, started meeting on Saturday mornings at Panera Bread. I found that Saturday mornings make it a lot easier to leave the apartment than Friday evenings. I went this morning, and while we don’t stay all that long, only about two hours, it really makes me feel good. Just a small group of women who are all from different backgrounds, have different lives, some have kids, some don’t, some are in the military, some aren’t…yet, we all speak the same language, we all share a common bond…we all knit.