Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Special Knitting

A few weeks ago I read a terribly sad story on facebook. About a new baby, Olivia, who was coming into this world, but because of genetic issues -  trisomy 18 - discovered in testing, this baby will not be with us long.

And my heart crumbled into a lot of pieces. I thought of her family - nuclear and extended. And I thought of her mom, someone I went to high school with. And have remained connected through facebook.

I have never been in this position and I won't even try to pretend I understand or imagine what those closest are thinking or feeling.

So, I did what I know how to do. I started knitting. I knit and knit. Because I knew that time wasn't on my side, so I knit and knit.

I took that blanket everywhere with me. And put my heart and soul and as many good thoughts as I could into that blanket. Because whether this blanket is used for a few hours, or longer, Olivia, I felt deserved nothing less than any other baby.

And so a blanket was knit.

As an afterthought I whipped up a medium sized preemie hat. Because again, I felt strongly in my heart that this precious baby needed a hat.

I sent the blanket and hat off. And just felt so much that I wish I could do so much more.

When I knit things for people, I do it with a lot of care. Unless, a specific pattern is requested, I will easily spend 3, 4, 5 hours finding just the right pattern. And I walk around the yarn store looking for just the right yarn. It is important to me that I try to make things just right.

Yet, in the case of rough times, or bad news - knitting feels so lacking. It doesn't feel like enough.

But it's what I can do. So I do it the best I can.

The blanket arrived to my friend Heather yesterday. And the thank you note I received left me in tears. I think if I ever doubt that knitting is not enough, I'm going to go back and reread that.

Because when I knit, it doesn't magically fix things, or heal people, or repair broken hearts. But it does mean something, and that counts.

That is what I will hold onto. My gift in life may be the ability to knit. And while it's not curing cancer, or getting people on Mars, or making sure no child goes hungry anywhere, maybe just bringing comfort to people, or putting a smile on their face, well that is enough. On this day. In this moment. It is enough.

This is a lesson for all of us. We all have different gifts and talents. Use yours, whatever they may be, even if it doesn't feel like enough. You just never know who you will touch. 

If you have some prayers or good thoughts to spare for Heather, Nathan, and Olivia, I'm sure they would appreciate them. You can also watch Heather and Nathan (two very talented musicians) discuss this a little bit in this video. Thank you.


  1. I thought all day about what the right comment for this post should be and in the end I can only say one thing, you're 7 kinds of special and kind and generous.

  2. Unfortunately, I have been on the receiving end of hand-knit memorial gifts when I gave birth to a stillborn daughter 5 years ago. You just don't know how much a gift like this means to grieving parents. The colors and patterns are absolutely beautiful.


Seeing your comments makes me smile! Thank you so much =)