Challenges

Well, it was bound to happen some time. I met my match in this 3-strand plying ball.

Yes, I did struggle with it. I strugglled all the way through to the end. And I even got some yarn out of it. But, I’ll get to all that in a minute. Right now, I’d like to introduce you to the one I affectionately refer to as, Girl Child, on my blogs.

This is my pint-sized, mini-me. We fuss all the time, but she truly is my sweetheart. She’s six years old and as rough and tough as they come. She loves to jump on practically everything and everyone! She yanks my hands when I’m knitting and she needs a tickle. She grabs at my pockets where I’ve hidden the candy that she clearly doesn’t need, having just bounced off the wall again. She’s a mess!

Just this past Friday, she and I went on a trip with the fellas. Boy Child (my other one) goes to St. Anthony’s of Padua grade school and the folks there sponsored a trip for the 8th grade to go skiing and tubing, etc. Dad, Boy Child and we girls tagged along.

See those folks that look like ants all the way at the top of the hill?  That’s the fellas, lol.

Of course you know what I came to do. Here’s a photo of a hat I was knitting on on the trip.

Kind of bored with this one. Another solid color for a friend.  Ho-hum.  But, it’s pretty soft, so it’s easy on the fingers.

At any rate, back to Girl Child. She stays busy most times.  My brother teases that she eats batteries for breakfast and I suspect he may be right.

As cute as she is, she can be a real challenge. She was assessed as autistic when she was nearing three years old.  She’s neither high nor low on the spectrum….kind of even keel, like her mom.  If you don’t know it though, autism has this way of trying to take over everything. Many moms turn to crafts and blogging to just remember who they are in spite of the difficulties that can be had raising an autistic child. Add to that the daily rigors of life, and you might understand why a blog could be so important.

As I was spinning on this 3-strand ball that didn’t want to be yarn, I couldn’t help but notice similarities between it and my daughter. I found myself thinking many of the the same things in yarn that I had thought about when I got the news that my child was autistic…

1. “These tangles were never expected.” I mean, I followed the directions to the letter. Where did these tangles come from?

2. “These tangles are frustrating.” Yes, SO frustrating, at times.  It is supposed to get better with time.  You are supposed to be able to gradually fall into a rhythm where the yarn just comes forth.  But it seems to only get more and more tangled as I go.  Is it ever going to get any easier?

3. “Why is this taking so much longer than it normally does.” Plying is usually done in a snap on any other singles I spin up. I’d be on the next set of singles by now.  What gives?

4. “This yarn is going to be different.” Had to come to the realization that the yarn just wasn’t going to be what I had wanted it to be. It was going to be what it was going to be and I had to let that happen.

5. And the most important of all….with all of it’s quirks and imperfections, this yarn was to be, “One of the most beautiful creations I’ve made yet.”

Yes, it had some places where the singles actually snapped on me, including the couple times Girl Child grabbed at it while I was plying…..(another reason most mom’s of autistic children often craft when their kids are asleep….sigh). I just stopped, took the time to remember to be patient with this one, and tied it back together. Then, there were other places where again I felt it overspun because I was spending too much time on the tangles from the ball end and not enough on the insertion of twist at the spindle end. So much going on at once. Breathes in and releases a heavy breath. “Woosaaahhhh”. But it’s all done.

With all of it’s challenges, I do think it’s as beautiful as any other yarn I’ve spun yet.  I’m sure it will be useful and productive in a knitting project somewhere.  Besides that, I’ve learned a little more along the way.  🙂

Comments

  1. Beautiful.

  2. Oh, Stacey, I so enjoyed this post… Girl Child is a veritable doll. (lol I loved the dots/family on the slope – you must’ve forgotten your telephoto lens.) 😀 I think your yarn metaphor is beautiful. And I loved reading your thoughts on the challenges of motherhood and the importance of blogging. You really are an inspiration to me. (And it goes without saying that your handspun is divine!)

    • Thanks Sos! I think she’s cute as a button too. Just a little on the ornery side, lol. Shhhh….I usually don’t write much about my family for safety’s sake. But, (whispering) this spin will eventually be going to a fellow blogger whose child is autistic. So, it seemed appropriate to speak on life with my baby girl. It’s certainly never dull! 🙂

  3. Well, I totally understand and appreciate the art of selective story-telling, and I have the utmost respect for your approach – as a mama and artist. 🙂 I think your friend is going to love the yarnie or anything knitted with it!

  4. OMG…I love that yarn. You did a great job spinning this. The colors are beautiful.

  5. How lovely! I haven’t done a 3 ply yet. I want to! I need to! I must! 🙂 Thanks for the inspiration. It’s amazing…

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