Why do hard stuff?

Why do I knit, why do I foster moms and puppies, why do I choose to do hard stuff?

My very most favorite knitting pattern is for an afghan, that includes a 14 row repeat of super simple stitches, then 3 rows of complex, must-pay-attention-ness. Repeated a bunch of times. The result is a stunning blanket that is warm, cozy and beautiful.

My very most favorite moms and pups to foster, offer a little challenge and a whole lot of predictability.

So, why would I willingly start a knitting project, that is incredibly effin difficult? It’s a scarf, not huge, only 43 stitches per row. But look at that stitch chart! For each of those 43 stitches, I have to translate each one of those symbols into its human-understandable counterpart: slip slip knit; yarn over; slip one stitch knitwise onto right needle, knit the next two stitches together, pass the slipped stitch over this stitch. SERIOUSLY? WHY?????

‘Hey, Sue, can you foster this mom and pups? We don’t really know anything about the mom. She might bite, she might be shy, she might be house-trained.” Sure, sign me up!

When I worked on the help desk for a library automation company, I knew that I had to work some easy problems in order to tackle the harder ones. I had to feel the success of answering some questions, of helping someone, of making an immediate difference, in order to be able to think through the more complex, multi-step problems that required more attention.

Same for dog rescue. I need some easy moms and pups in order to be able to help those who need a little more.

And that’s why I don’t shy away from the challenges, whether in knitting, or in rescue. The hard stuff makes me stronger, makes me reach out for help, makes me connect with my community. And the easy stuff provides the glide, the rest, the comfort, that shores up the resources to be able to handle the hard stuff.

So….how long will this scarf actually take me to finish? Great question. But for me, it’s the process and the journey, not the end result.

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