Friday, February 09, 2007

knitting is a beautiful thing

As you may know my mom has a fatal illness. Today I learned that someone I am related to by
marriage was just diagnosed with a rare and terminal brain disease. The progression of my mom's illness has brought a lot of sadness with only more to come. Sometimes it's easy to get caught up in the "what's the point" mindset. This is not unique to me. People were writing about it thousands of years ago:

"Meaningless! Meaningless!"
says the Teacher.
"Utterly meaningless!
Everything is meaningless."

What does man
gain from all his labor
at which he toils under the sun?

Generations come
and generations go,

but the earth remains forever.

This was taken from the first chapter of Ecclesiastes so no, I am certainly not the first person to wonder, "What's the point?"

While pondering this thought I was reading through some of my rambling files on the computer and happened upon this bit I wrote about a year and a half ago. It was inspired by a simple grave marker not far from our little Lucy's own grave. This particular stone reads simply, "Sister". I thought of how the person in the earth below my feet was no less real than I am. No less passionate, no less alive. And yet what remained for most of the world to see was a
very plain stone marker that gives no more information than she was female, had parents and at least one sibling. Sister.

life and humanity are so much bigger than my little world.

I belong to the present. The little details of my life are here and now. I am not promised tomorrow and there is no certainty that tomorrow will even know my name. The only moment I can live is now.

My worth is in this very minute. If my life should end tomorrow, my worth would depend on whether or not someone else continued for me, remembering me. And after 100 years the truth is there will not likely be anyone to remember more than maybe my name. I would only hope that the impact of the moments that made up my life would have reached down through the time that left me behind and embrace the lives of those in the future. Whether or not they know the ins and outs of my life, I hope that the substance of who I am will be passed along through lives of people to come.

Time will leave me behind and continue on without me. The clock does not need me here to keep on ticking.


I was thinking about how knitting is such a beautiful thing that can be used to reach beyond not just our own little worlds (when we send preemie hats and booties to warm little heads and feet of babies born too soon, infant bereavement sets for someone we'll never know, or afghan squares to be made into a tangable form of comfort for a family in grief) but knitting can also span time. In our home we have an afghan that fits such a description. We have cross stitch and wall art and numerous other items. We have so many things left behind from people who remain on earth only in our memories of them.

What are you doing that will live beyond yourself?

Aaron's Afghan
Emmazing Grace
Project Compassion
Heavenly Angels in Need
The Preemie Project
25 Things
LucyBug

(the photo to the right - some squares for Aaron's Afghan)

5 comments:

Mama Bear said...

I'm sorry for the new bad news :(

I often think of how ancestors of mine I never met made choices in life that put me where I am today and how the values they taught their children passed down.

I look forward to the day I get to meet them.

Candy said...

A profound and touching post. Thank you!

Wool Winder said...

Beautiful thoughts. Ecclesiastes is one of my favorite books. In the end it boils down to one conclusion:

Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.

For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil.

Ecc. 12:13-14

Let's fill our lives with good deeds.

Jen said...

So very true! Thanks for the link too. Something for us to work on.

Momma B said...

Wow! Reading this brought tears to my eyes! Are you my sister? I think I am more blunt in my thoughts, but the idea is the same! Well done, ANT KNIT, well done!