A Funeral For Myself

27 Mar

I learned how to knit at age six or seven. My mother learned from her mother and on up the line of Irish women who’s lives depended, in one way or another on mastering the skill.

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I Love Making Baby Socks

Over the years I have perfected my skills, spent hours making socks, scarves, hats and more hats. Knitting needles have been an extension of my hands and a serious part of my identity.

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Baby Hunter Wearing One of Grandma’s Hats

When packing my “stash” to accompany me to Mexico, I couldn’t image finding the soft wools and alpaca yarns that I cherished. As it was, I gave away bags and bags of yarn at the garage sales that were our weekend activities as we prepared for our move to Bacalar.

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A Fraction of My Yarn Collection

It has taken us two and a half years to build and inhabit our house in the tropical climate along the shore of Laguna Bacalar. During that time, my boxes of yarn and needles have been tucked away in storage only to be opened this week.

As I fondly handled my soft, delicate yarns and needles, I burst into tears. I am no longer THAT person. I do not need to de-stress with the meditative clicking of needles after a long day at a boring government job. My attire no longer includes a differently knotted scarf every day worn in an air conditioned office. I can barely stand to wear a scarf in this climate, even on the coolest day.

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Our Front Entrance in Bacalar MX

I was not prepared for how this whole experience, retiring, moving and now living in Mexico would change me. I’m not saying that I’ll never knit again. That would be silly.

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Hibiscus Blooming in the Yard, After a Brief Shower

How do you define yourself? What if you lost a particular interest or capacity? Giving up my identity as a knitter came as an unexpected shock. I wonder what other surprises life has for me. The tears lasted a few minutes and the funeral took place in my head. I am so grateful for my life. Here’s to the new me that is changing every day. DOS TORTAS

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18 Responses to “A Funeral For Myself”

  1. Tami Strom March 27, 2016 at 9:22 am #

    When you were talking about not “needing” knitting anymore, that felt peaceful. I understand the sadness some though. I personally find that where I was once fanatical about how people cared for their horses, and the role I played, it feels easier and more peaceful to just add whatever I can, and then watch and see what they do. I don’t “need” people to do it how I think they should, well, not as often anyway. When my elderly horse is gone, I don’t plan to have another of my own. I enjoy the smell, the sound, and the feel of horses, I get that without riding, and I don’t want the responsibility that goes with horse ownership anymore. It took some time to accept that. I’d rather see how I can have relationships with people more than horses now. That’s new. Definitely not the image I thought I needed to maintain as a professional in the horse world….

    Like

    • afish25 March 27, 2016 at 3:08 pm #

      Very similar to how I feel. I want to figure out how to have relationships w people. Different for me but exciting.

      Like

  2. Pam March 27, 2016 at 9:26 am #

    Wow!! Beautiful! Thank you! Perfect for an Easter celebration of your own resurection.

    Like

    • afish25 March 27, 2016 at 3:06 pm #

      True, resurrection for Easter Sunday. Life is a rebirth everyday. Thanks for stopping by.

      Like

  3. Jamie Ray March 27, 2016 at 10:16 am #

    Being retired is a much looser and less linear way of living than working full time for a government bureaucracy. I am much more of a “noodler” now. I have done very few of the projects I thought I was going to do, and I am much better at letting myself be interested in things I hear about (books, concepts, places to visit) and less inclined to get things “done”.
    My feat was that I would be bored or lacking intellectual stimulation. Not happening!

    Like

    • afish25 March 27, 2016 at 3:05 pm #

      You are so right Jaime. I give myself permission to lay in the hammock and read. I did just sign up for a kayak marathon, so there is some motivation. I have a friend to train with. Way cool.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. LJones March 27, 2016 at 10:42 am #

    Alex – I am deeply touched by this. I am at a conference in Puerto Morelos and we spent the morning on this very subject: letting of of who we think we are, how we define ourselves, etc. I feel a bit vulnerable at the moment – and am picturing your yarn in your hands as you let go..so I thank you for this post. I will be in Bacalar approx 31st…Bob has your packet safely in our cabana:) See you soon !

    Liked by 1 person

    • afish25 March 27, 2016 at 3:03 pm #

      Bob is here now? I may kayak on over. Let’s go for a morning swim when you arrive.

      Like

  5. Karen Hodgens March 27, 2016 at 1:07 pm #

    Bless you and your knitting needles. I never learned since even crocheting made me a nervous wreck. What soothes one freaks out another. I Can equate to losing identify. When I left my marriage of nearly 28 years I became so depressed I had to go on medication. I didn’t know who I was. Who was I if I wasn’t Rick’s wife? Who was I if I was no longer married? It took a couple of years to reinvent myself. Maybe you’ll knit; maybe it can fall into the past as a fond memory. Loving you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • afish25 March 27, 2016 at 3:02 pm #

      I taught myself to crochet as well. Right now my studio is in chaos. Little by little I will get it organized. I think I would like to sew. Simple clothes would be nice. There are infinite possibilities. Loving you too Karen.

      Like

  6. BillyBob Buckaroo March 27, 2016 at 2:55 pm #

    Yes! breathing in and breathing out.

    Liked by 1 person

    • afish25 March 27, 2016 at 2:59 pm #

      You do invent yourself over and over BillyBob. Thanks for stopping by.

      Like

  7. Isa Markland March 27, 2016 at 5:25 pm #

    I’m the happy owner of a hat you knitted. And I’m confident that whatever you do next will involve spreading love and positive energy to those of us who know and love you.

    Like

    • afish25 March 27, 2016 at 8:17 pm #

      Oh Isa, thanks dear. Catch my hug.

      Like

  8. Andrea March 27, 2016 at 6:20 pm #

    This is what I love so much about your blog: you embrace change and remind your readers that taking the leap into unchartered territory can be so rewarding. I love that you took the time to mourn your previous identity as a knitter, and then embraced unexpected opportunities. Your posts inspire me to pursue my own dreams. Wishing you both a happy Easter!

    Like

    • afish25 March 27, 2016 at 8:16 pm #

      Thanks Andrea, no fear. Thanks fo coming by.

      Like

  9. emilievardaman March 28, 2016 at 5:06 pm #

    You maybe you have not lost an old self but found a new self.
    And you could also knit, then send things up with visitors to mail away as gifts to those who still live up north,
    Whatever you do, enjoy!

    Like

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