Between the Lives

Thursday, March 23, 2006

The last couple days I have been reading Between the Lives by Shepard. It's a collection of biographical essays about artist-couples in New Zealand and their experiences with maintaining relationships while also being artists. Not surprisingly, many of the female partners chose to give up their art to support their husbands and raise their children. That is not depressing to me; much of being allowed to choose is that you can choose what other people don't agree with. But what is sad is that their efforts were rewarded with philandering, especially so for one woman whose husband brought home a student he had impregnated (!) to live with them. Worse still was that he delighted in the birth and growth of this child, while regarding his own as troublesome nuisances to his work.

Now, I know plenty of people who have happy, successful marriages. But right now I am not feeling optimistic about marriage in my future. Not because men are scum (some are; most aren't) but because of the culture of submission in women. Even a strong, liberated woman (such as myself) will find herself caving to society and wondering just when she started worrying about having the house clean and dinner cooked before her man gets home. I am afraid of what love will do to me, really. (Or what it has done, several times in the past.) I become slow, unsure of myself, needy even to the point of madness. I become depressed more easily. It's as if my every flaw is magnified, and in turn I feel insecure.

I can only hope that a long period of nomadic travel, making art, and being alone will be the cold water in which my steel is tempered. Do I want to fall madly in love someday? I've been there, it's not that great after a while and it makes you silly. But what I do want is a supportive partner who is equally interested in my work, is happy to see me thrive, and works to create a positive environment for me as I do for him. Someone who is independent, but still thinks of my feelings before making plans. Someone who has an excellent work ethic that will rub off on me, who likes to be intimate and close, and enjoys little things like the smell of the sea on the wind, the satisfying sound of clicking bike wheels over soft earth. Someone who wants children, not someone who wants to add to the gene pool then support them only financially.

Anything less is unacceptable, a temporary distraction on my road. I guess what I want is a fellow journeyman, not a destination that I am forever looking forward to. Someone who wants to travel alongside me, be with me, and discover things both outside himself and within.

(That isn't too much to ask, I hope. But if it is, that's ok too.)

Not much physical progress...

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

But mentally, a lot. I finished one sleeve of Mark's sweater, added it to the body, and got about 1/3 through the 2nd one today. I also returned a 4-month-overdue library book, paid the fine, did laundry, washed dishes, sewed new buttons onto Mark's cardigan, and arranged to have my diploma sent to my parents house rather than mine. I even took mark out to lunch since I was on campus (sushi and orange fanta, if you're curious.)

Right now I'm looking into doing some artist residencies. It's paid travel, and you give them the work you create (sometimes) or get a stipend (sometimes). Either way, a good way to get away for a while. I still want to go to San Diego sometime soon, and Jiyeon (my best college pal) invited me to come to Chicago. Plus I think we are still taking a trip to Asheville together... not sure on that one.

All the rest is the same. I spend my time satisfied and deeply in love, or miserable and ready to pack my bags and go. The prospect of basically living in a guest bedroom after having lived on my own is so unappealing that it overcomes my desire to leave right now (hence the constant travel.)

I'm hoping to get the sweater done by this weekend so he can take it on a rugby trip. We'll see...

Plymouth Suri Merino, Koigu, and sweater sleeve

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

I haven't posted a picture in a while, and I apologize. I didn't have any batteries and also was feeling like crap. On a side note, is it just me, or is everyone having a crap month this month? Death, illness, pet death, moving, breakups, divorces... they seem to be abounding right now. I hope it turns around for everyone who's struggling right now (including me, because I'm selfish that way.)

Anyway, that dark blob on the right is the first sleeve of Mark's sweater (yes, I'm finishing it. I can't imagine sitting and attaching all that emotion to an innocent cone of yarn. Better to attach it to the sweater!) I am working hard on it so that I can move on to... dum dum dum... a sweater out of that gee-orgeous Plymouth Suri Merino. It's a relatively new color, a butter yellow, and the yarn was so inexpensive (got it on sale, thank you Knaughty Knitter! I need to get two more balls somewhere, since I want to lengthen the sleeves.

And on the far left, we have Bronwyn's Be-Still-My-Heart sweater. In short, my mood lately has been downright brokenhearted, the sort of "I will never trust again, how can you do this to me, wait, I love you, no, get out of my life" sort of mood. To battle that, I am knitting a sweater out of koigu. Sadly, my LYS did not have enough of the same dyelot, so I was thinking of doing stripes of coordinating colors around the hem, cuffs, and sleeves. Annie to the rescue! I emailed to enquire if she'd part with some of her yarny babies, as I knew she had an overload of koigu. Well, wouldn't you know that honey-hearted gal traded me not only her pinkish leftovers which coordinated beautifully, but also, two fulls balls of the pink that you see there! (I only had to untangle one, and it took maybe 45 minutes.) Now, I'm not one to wax poetic about gifts. And I know I gave her some Kidsilk Haze and some other secrety things which she will receive soon. But let's be honest folks; I need this sweater. Not like a person needs food, but like a very sad person needs a hug. Not only did she facilitate a hug I can wear, but when I do wear it I'll be reminded of Annie and of everyone else I've met via blogland who have been kind, or thoughtful, or just sent a nice email when I was down. So thanks for that, and I'll be photographing that sweater when it gets started because it's everyone's child now, and I want you all to see it grow. :)

mmm.... new projects...

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Originally uploaded by The Prolific Knitter.

I was so proud of myself for making a spreadsheet (yes, I finally figured it out!) with all my WIPs (7 of them, sigh.) that I did a little online shopping. Nothing crazy, but something I had been wanting for a while. I had 8 balls of Elann Baby Silk in Raspberry, and while I loved the yarn, I made the mistake of seeing that new stock would be up in *gasp* a gorgeous purple! Now, I am on a purple kick ya'll. Purple and butter yellow. There was no yellow, but there was this cute pattern (sans buttons *shudder*) and it was the right weight, and there are 8 patterns for $1.50! The rest of them aren't my style, but my mom would no doubt like one of them. So anyway, 10 balls of Lotus Blossom and 1 ball of Parchment are winging their way towards me to make this cute top. :)

I also saw that is having a sale, including... drumroll please... koigu! It's KPM only, but that's what I wanted so I am too pleased. I restrained myself to enough for 1 pair of socks, in a lovely robin's egg blue color.

(What about the no-yarn rule, you say? Well, when one is breaking up, one is entitled to be a little more spendy than usual to calm the nerves. This also extends to the dance lessons I signed up for and the fact that I ate out alone last night.)

My mom is taking me out to lunch so I won't get much knitting time til after that, and you won't see my progress til tomorrow! But it's purple, laceweight, and very nearly done already. *happy sigh* (Oh. And it is out of my stash...!)


Sunday, March 12, 2006

I've never been tagged before so pardon if these are so yesterday. A progress photo of my many socks coming soon!

What were you doing 9 years ago?
I was in Middle School, getting horrible grades and going to all sorts of special counselors and having systems for stuff because I was so disorganized and wacky.

What were you doing 6 years ago?
I was flying by myself to California for a comic convention. I had this thing for flying by myself, I loved it! (And still do.)

What were you doing 1 hour ago?

Name 3 movies/tv shows you can't turn off if you stumble across them on TV:
Kim Possible
Anything Miss Marple/Sherlock Holmes/Midsomer Murders/etc.

Name 3 things you want to improve upon this year:
Being a little more impulsive (Did I mention I want to take dance lessons?)
Lose things less often
Spending more time with people who care about me (friends and family :)

Name 3 things you can't live without (aside from knitting):
snuggles, hugs, and squeezes
eBay (for yarn!)
a comfortable bed and a library card (these go together!!)

Name 3 things you could live without:
half my clothes
stress-related muscle tension (tho this is better than it used to be. yay!)

Name 3 things you really like about yourself:
I don't give up on anything. Ever. (this can also be bad. See: stubborness)
I am really warm and caring
I'm excellent at finding information

I don't really tag people, but if you do respond send me a link. I like reading other peoples' answers. :)