Despite this sweater's completion nearly a month ago, it's been sitting on the top shelf in the closet, waiting. Waiting for cooler weather and a cooler head, just waiting- a sad fate for such a beautiful garment and one I've wanted for so long.
Over the last eighteen months, I've collected about fifteen pounds. Not a lot- a pound here and there- but enough that my old clothes no longer fit. Part of it is I no longer have the time or the initiative to run fifty miles a week, part of it is my body settling into its mid twenties, part of it is a happy relationship. The thinnest, fittest parts of my life were always the saddest, when I was exercising as a means of control and judgment, not just on my body- a method of taking back what I felt I'd lost. Coming to terms with this new body, a little softer, a little heavier, a little more real, has been hard and for this vainest of reasons, this blog has suffered.
It's hard to take pictures of yourself and not like the tiny viewfinder. I've put off truly finishing this sweater because I didn't know what to wear it with. Doing my bit for the economy and my ego, I bought pants that fit and emptied my closet of eight bags of clothes that are off to the thrift store. I feel freer, lighter and more able to concentrate on the power of my body to haul me up mountains instead of cram itself into my vintage dresses. Jackson Browne, one of my favorite singers, astutely notes "No matter how fast I run, I can never seem to get away from me. No matter where I am, I can't help thinking I'm just a day away from where I want to be."
I don't want to get melodramatic- this is the difference between a four and an eight I'm talking about- but it's been a new experience for a girl whose grandmother told her not to cross her legs in the car, because if we got in an accident, no man would marry a woman who limps. In high school, a photographer friend of my mother asked me to model for him and the ensuing tug of war was miserable. I didn't know how to be smart and pretty, so I took smart every time. I swung the opposite way in college, when it was assumed that everyone was at least moderately intelligent. Since then, I've struggled to define myself; "woman, seeker, knitter, maker" seemed cliche, leaving out family, friends and the eight year old who broke her wrist tripping over her own shoelaces.
In the last few weeks, it seems a balance has struck itself. I leave more food on my plate and walk more than I usually do. In return, my new pants promise not to cut into my skin. If everyone wins, it's because everyone is working together- even that occasional cookie.
I'm pleased to present this newest addition to the WryPunster closet- a beautifully fashioned sweater that reminds me happiness is truly in the heart of its maker.
Demi by Kim Hargreaves in Vintage Knits, knit in size XS, in 9 skeins of Jo Sharp Silkroad Aran Tweed, on US 6 and 7s. Finished with four glass buttons from Accessories of Old. Pattern modifications included adding a selvedge stitch to each piece, lengthening the body and sleeves and cabling without a cable needle.