Peace is better than chocolate

Living in fog (and I don’t mean San Francisco)

I am coming to the end of a big knitting project, my first adult sweater. I have made baby sweaters before using the same techniques, but a baby sweater doesn’t take that long. An adult sweater is a task that requires time. Weeks or possibly months.

Now that the end of this one is in sight, I have decided on my next project, and it is also an adult sweater. But this one is an ambitious undertaking. It uses techniques I’m less familiar with, and is constructed differently than any of the other sweaters I have made. But most significantly, it has a complicated cable pattern that is shown in a chart. And on certain rows, you have to read the chart both backwards and opposite (knit stitches are purl stitches, and purls are knits.) I wanted to make sure that I could actually make the sweater before I bought a bunch of fancy yarn, so I took yarn I had laying around and worked the cable pattern. And while it is hard, and gave me a few hand cramps, I can absolutely do it, and do it well.

But while I was doing it, I realized that I wouldn’t have been able to if I were still eating sugar. I would not have been able to wrap my mind around it. I wouldn’t have been clear headed enough to make sense of it. Or if I could have made sense of it, the food would have made me indifferent enough to fail to take the time or spend the energy. Why bother knitting when I could just eat? Besides you can’t knit and eat at the same time.

I am really smart. And it’s a good thing. Because as a sugar addict, I was never firing on all cylinders. I got by in life by being so smart that I didn’t have to be all there. 

I stopped eating sugar on January 2, 2006. But it wasn’t until June of 2007 that My head cleared. It took a year and a half for me to come out of the fog. A fog that I had been living in since I was a child. It was such a constant presence in my life from such a young age that I didn’t even know it was there until it was gone.

I used to think that everybody else got an easier life than I did. Now, of course, that is certainly not true. (That’s just the whiny addict talking.) But I had no idea how much harder I was making it on myself by essentially being drunk on sugar all the time. I never realized how I was limiting myself, or just how muddy and muddled my thinking was. 

I know that this new project is not going to be easy. I am a great knitter, but I am stretching myself here. I am sure I will come up against things that I don’t understand, or things that are harder to do than I expect. I can anticipate that at some point, I will get confused. I am positive I will get frustrated. But I will not be incapable. I will not be incapacitated. I may be taking on a demanding task, but I will be my super smart self on top of my game. And I will enjoy every moment. Okay, maybe not the hand cramps.


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