Friday, May 22, 2015

My love has conditions

I finished the socks I started making as Cody's Christmas present...for 2013.

Yes, one has a longer foot than the other.  I was knitting during a meeting that ran long and realized what was happening far too late.  I didn't want to rip back all those tiny stitches and that dark yarn.  Cody didn't seem to realize that the heel on some handknit socks shouldn't bunch up quite so much.

I told him that I would never make him socks out of sock yarn ever again--he wears a Size 12 wide, and there are some lovely worsted weight options.  I do not care for long projects.  I don't mind putting a lot of time into something for someone important--sometimes--but I just like faster projects better.  I was so excited after finishing Cody's socks that I made Evelyn a pair of tube socks.  As in, I started them that day and finished them that night.

I held Evelyn's socks up to Cody's and just laughed and laughed.  It's like folding clothes and putting a pair of her shorts (12-18 months) next to his.  She's just so tiny and he's just so ... not.


I told Cody that if we ever broke up, I was taking the socks back.  He said he understood and he loved me.  And that he loved the socks.  I don't know why I think about this as much as I do, except maybe it's because I have a lot of time to think when I'm knitting thousands of stitches, but there are a few projects I would want back if we weren't together.  People have let me know this is a terrible way to approach gift-giving and marriage, but to his credit Cody has always said he would return the granny square afghan I made him when he was 20, the quilt I sewed him when he was 25 (he might be lying there, though), or the hat I crocheted for him this past Christmas because I love the yarn so much.

And now the socks.

Unlike a relationship, a handmade good is this super-tangible thing letting everyone know just how much time and effort you put into it.  Taking it back from someone doesn't get you back any hours, but it feels like getting back something.  And I'm not sure why I place these conditions on my gifts to the person I share a child and lots of paperwork with, but I do it even when it's not over something worth fussing over in the future.  None of what I've made him is super impressive, aside from the time spent, and I'm acting like it's prenup-worthy.

I still can't finish toes on socks worth a flip.  I'm hoping to get the hang of grafting the stitches together some time before Evelyn learns to knit and spots all my weaknesses.  But we had a nice time crocheting together tonight, so my days of looking impressive to either her or her dad are probably coming to a close.  Maybe I should just spend what little time I have left as this family's sole knitter  making what I want for the people who accept my gifts, even with their figurative and literal strings attached, so gratefully and with such excitement.

Maybe they need matching hats. 


Johanna said...

That seems totally reasonable to me, although for me I probably wouldn't ask my boyfriend for things back... but then I haven't made him anything SUPER expensive or time consuming.

Jen said...

I think maybe you're just a nicer person than I am!