It has been since I last bought yarn!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

The Fear


I should be ecstatic that sock #1 of the Lakeside knee socks is off the needles. (Pictured above)

But I'm not. Not even a little bit.

I'm too busy being terrified about sock #2. Oh no, I'm not afraid that I won't knit it. I'm afraid I won't have enough yarn to finish it.

I have the fear.

"The fear" is mostly common in knitters who worry about one thing, and one thing only- having enough yarn to finish. The mere idea that we'll run out of yarn and be unable to finish our project, (as if the yarn in that particular colorway would just magically evaporate from the world somehow), and we will be left with an unfinished object to taunt us. FOREVER. The fear will cause you do to crazy things- like alter the pattern in a way not suggested just to save a little yarn, or rip back large sections of work on the thought that the yarn won't last.

This is not a new concept for me. I seem to be struck down with it whenever I knit something I'm particulary proud of myself over. You may recall the New Enlgand socks, or my grandma's socks- where I looked at the yarn remaining and said to myself "no way there will be enough". And with every pull of the yarn ball, and as each tug would bring the ball smaller and smaller I'd sit and stew in the fear, praying and bartering with God to "just give me enough yarn to finish!"

In fact only a few days ago MiL also experienced the fear. Emailing me her concern that she was going to run out before her baby sweater would finish. (She had just enough.)

Here's the worst part about the fear. After the fear has made the knitter do something utterly irrational, like rip back or alter the pattern (and leaving the finished item in a way that is less satisfactory to ourselves), in almost all cases, it is rarely realized. Yes. That's right- all that worrying, all that obsessing, all that holding your breath with each yarn tug- and in the end, you would have had enough to do exactly as you were supposed to.

The fear is sick that way.

I have the fear right now. It doesn't matter that the pattern author of this particular pattern has written down the exact yardage she used to knit the socks (516 yards). It doesn't matter that I'm knitting with the Wollmeise, (the wollmeise's "goodness" cannot adequately be expressed in words... it's THAT good), and therefore assures me of 576 yards. My brain is telling me I'm not going to make it. I'm already imagining short cuts. I couldn't even allow myself to sew in the ends on sock 1, just in case, I need to rip it back and accomodate the yarn to have enough for 2 socks. The fear is strong in me.

The fear does have one small, teeny, tiny upside- it guarentees a quicker finish. When I have the fear, I knit like a mad woman, desperate to see if the fear was real, desperate to know what I'll have to concoct to make up for the missing yarn. So desperate am I to KNOW WHAT WILL HAPPEN, I will knit and knit and knit and knit and knit and produce a finished product. The fear sucks the joy out of a project, but it also ensures that it gets done.

I know that someday, somewhwere, the fear is going to be realized. I am going to knit something and realize that there is not enough yarn. I will probably melt down. (Because if you haven't guessed it- I'm a bit of drama queen.) I also know that I'll probably figure it out, a way around, or find someone (THANK GOD FOR RAVELRY!) who has a couple of scraps in a similar color way. It will happen. It's not knowing what I'll do to get past it that scares me.

I will get over the pain. But I doubt I'll ever get past the fear.

3 comments:

Rycrafty said...

Do you have a kitchen scale? Weigh the sock, then weigh the ball. If the ball weighs more you're golden!

Anne said...

Oooh, Number 1 looks lovely however. Just tell people one leg is shorter than another if they ask why one sock is smaller! They won't comment again.

robbob said...

You kill me! Love seeing you comments and can't wait to see the finished product. See you soon.