Thursday, March 26, 2009

Dr. B's cure for knitting ennui

If you listened to episode 44 of the podcast, you know that my knitting has taken a nosedive. Into a pile of elephant crap. For three weeks, not only has every project run into a major snag, but the more current issue is thatI lost my will to knit. Very serious. Life-threatening, even, for those unfortunates in my immediate vicinity.

I have been suffering from knitting ennui, which is what happens when Knitter's Block goes untreated. Like an infection that gets worse. By Tuesday, when I had an appointment with the esteemed Dr. B, I was at the point where my knitting mojo was going to go septic. (I'll stop the infection analogy here.)

Our conversation went a lot like this:

Me: So, I can't knit.
Dr. B: Like, there is a problem with your hands?
Me: No. I can't knit. Everything I touch turns to crap.
Dr. B: Are you doing something differently?
Me: Same stuff. Easy stuff. There is something wrong with me. And now, I don't want to knit. I'm Sock Blocked!

(At this point, Dr. B chuckled at my interpretation of crude slang to appropriately fit the situation, and I proceeded to repeat the entire "When Knitting Attacks" segment from episode 44. Then, I said something to the effect of, "I'm sure they didn't warn you about having to deal with crazy knitters in school.")

At the end of my story, I asked for a magic solution. (Every time I go in, I explain my problem, and then request a solution, formula, or list. This works, I swear. He's just *that* good.)

So, Dr. B recommended using mindfulness practices to determine the source of the Knitter's Block. [For a great explanation of mindfulness and knitting, go listen to this episode of Cast-on.] What was I thinking about when I was working on these projects, or thinking about these projects that made them SO difficult or unappealing?

So, I did. I saw my Knit(more)-a-long sweater sitting there, on the table. After a Napoleon Dynamite-esque sigh, I determined that it was stupid to allow a large swath of stockinette stitch defeat me, and I had a movie to watch. Believe me, you don't want to face a cinematic gem like Saw 5 without some knitting.

Somehow, just auto-piloting on the Katarina sweater while watching people mutilate themselves knocked my knittng ennui right on it's ass. If knitting ennui has an ass. Though, maybe my knitting was intimidated by the film; maybe it thought I would take a Jigsaw-esque approach to it's attitude.

(That would be, for those of you who don't like gorey, poorly concieved sequels, "Shape up or lose a sleeve," in order to give the sweater a REAL appreciation for it's life.)

In any case, not only is my mojo back online, but I've also cast on a "Coachella" top, in the Tess Microfiber Ribbon. Luscious! Ignore the fact that I have done the front three times, since I managed to misinterpret the directions incorrectly the first two times. I have; the consensus is that it's going to look HOT on me.

(By the way, for your own dose of Dr. B-esque strategies, go give Dr. Gemma a listen.)


  1. Glad you got it back! :) I just listened to that cast-on episode last night. It was funny because I had been searching for some meditation podcasts to help me ease my stress lately and here is Brenda talking all about it. :) Now I have some nice soothing mediation podcasts to listen to while knitting too!

    And Dr. Gemma is just great to listen to when you need perspective.

    Keep knitting!!

  2. Oh gracious - I just realized that I too am having a knitting block too. I find it's the same as ironing block - every time I go to start something else suddenly pops up needing to be done. What a lucky thing I came across this post, thanks! Teresa who is 'stepping away from the computer' - well in a minute

  3. I did the front of Coachella 3 times (actually 2 plus some surgery) and I read the directions correctly. I think that's pretty typical for that pattern.


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