Thursday, January 11, 2007

Lady Eleanor Strikes Again

I did finish one gift in time for Christmas giving but I couldn't mention it on the blog because it was for my sister and I was afraid she'd read about it. I made her my favorite thing to knit: the Lady Eleanor Stole (love that entrelac!) from ScarfStyle. That's my Darling Daughter modeling it in the photo since I haven't yet gotten to see it on my sister.

The yarn is Manos in a variegated purple to pink colorway. Purple is Sis's old favorite color and pink is her new one so it seemed perfect. Her reaction upon opening the stole was quite gratifying: she cried!

The stole has rather an emotional history. Our golden retriever Max (whom I've mentioned on this blog before) died in September. As you know, he was a much-loved member of our family. He developed brain cancer but for six long days we didn't know this. He had very weird symptoms which required that someone be with him day and night so he wouldn't injure himself. While I watched over him, I worked on my sister's stole. It helped keep me awake and soothed my nerves. I could pick it up and put it down as Max needed me.

As I told my sister in the note I enclosed with the stole, there was a lot of love knitted into the entrelac: love for her and love for Max. I knew I was saying good-bye to him over those six days and I made sure to let him know what a wonderful gift he had been to our family. Oh, how I miss him!

His memory will always be with me and the purple Lady Eleanor stole will be a tangible reminder of his life. I know my sister will leave the dog hairs woven in because she understands how I felt about Max and knows the honor I did her in giving her "his" last project.

Do you use knitting as therapy? Has it gotten you through a tough time?


Blogger Fran Baker said...

Oh, wow, Nancy, what a weeper of a story! New hugs on Max. We lost Emily, our blind Shi-Tzu in December, and I still look for her off and on during the day.

I do use knitting as therapy, though I didn't realize it until this year. I walk away from a plot stalemate in a book and pick up my knitting. It helps. Because while I'm working on my latest knitting project, I can usually untangle the plot thread(s) that have stymied me.

And sometimes, when I'm in a stare-down stalemate with my husband, focusing on my knitting keeps my hands too busy to wrap around his neck. (Just kidding, LOL!)

11:52 AM  
Blogger Nancy Herkness said...

Thanks, Fran, for the hugs. The same back to you for Emily. Beloved pets leave such a gaping hole in your life when they die, don't they? But I wouldn't miss having their company for the world.

LOL on the husband stalemate! It definitely defuses tension to have those knitting needles going--although sometimes it annoys my DH even more because he feels I'm not focusing on HIM :-).

10:02 PM  
Blogger Barbara Bretton said...

What a wonderful picture of Max, Nancy! That's how I'm going to remember him.

And Fran, I'm so sorry about Emily.

They really can break our hearts, can't they?

11:43 PM  
Blogger LauraP said...

Knitting as therapy - oh, yeah, and in so many ways. All those mentioned before, and I find too that I can listen more thoughtfully when I'm knitting and not blurt out the first response that comes to mind. Always a good thing, given my tendency to sarcasm. Plus there's the physical therapy, the calming rhythms - such a comforting way to fill the time when the world's not living up to my happy daydreams.

11:35 AM  

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