Friday, August 10, 2007

Someone licked the Red right off my Candy Cane.

Oops, it was me.

Funny how the mind works.
All recent problems aside I generally subscribe to the Life is Good theory. I grew up in an alcoholic bluecollar poor environment. I was one of those kids that not only got free lunch, but was marched to the cafeteria with children of migrant farm workers for breakfast too. (I still adore a hot breakfast, especially if I don't have to cook it.) Finding myself faced at an early age with the option of a State Home or... I ran away. So when I stop to look at the big picture of my life, I'm pretty happy. I have The Adored One, a Pink Collar job, a nice home, a car that starts without prayers, and spoiled dogs. Nifty. Life is Good.

So I'm riding in the car with a lovely young lady (younger than me) to a Knit Night and asking the usual "getting to know" questions. Her and her husband are both Master Degree Psychologists, she's a Professor at a big university and he practises some experimental form that sounds really interesting. She got into Psych because she felt it was the most effective way that she could further "Social Justice". They are house hunting (big price tag houses) and she is talking about this that and the other.

I began to get that queasy feeling in the gut, that inadequate, what do I have to show for my life feeling. No Masters. Small house. No grand designing theme to my life. Not envious, not angry, just inadequate and gauche. That Girl-Not-Invited-to-the-Prom feeling. Did I mention she has thick gorgeous curly hair?

Now, I don't generally read Biographies or Dramas because I don't find other people's bad events to be relaxing. But I do read alot of histories of ethnic groups. Just plain people who lived in tiny houses, faced incredible hardships and still created culture, beauty and love.

What does this have to do with knitting? I'm knitting a lace shawl right now. And while, after it's blocked, it's the yarn overs and the K2tog/SKPs that will be noticed as airy designs, without the plain stitches in between there would be nothing. And in a textured design, all those cables, twists and bumps are stunning, but only because of the smooth stitches that create contrast. In an elaborate colour work design, it's the plain section that rests the eye.

So perhaps it doesn't matter that I don't have a thirst for some scheme, or plans to return to school and change the world, or that I need to buy a roof. Even plain stitches form the fabric of a good life.


melanie said...

WOW! What an awesome perspective. Thanks for the reminder...this was an excellent way to start my day on PlainJane farm in PlainOle, NY doing nothing more exciting than animal care, gardening, and a trip to the dump today...(oh yeah, and knitting along the way)

Jennifer said...

It's the everyday things in life that give everyone's life meaning. Now, I don't know anything about the person you were driving with, but it isn't the Master's or the fancy home and other accessories that make a successful life. It's the kindness, love, and good honest living that is the measure of a good life.

Shelly in Omaha said...

What a wonderful analogy! I think you felt inferior because you allowed yourself to. This person might have a lot more insecurities than you could ever imagine(I have found that most mental health professionals do). Besides in the grand plan of things when we meet our God, it won't make any difference what kind of job we had or the type of house we lived in, what will matter is the kind of people we are without all the "trimmings".

tina said...

What a completely lovely post! I found it REAL, warm and so in touch with what life should be when lived at it's best. You seem to be doing a bang up job at that too!!!