A couple of years ago, when we were getting ready to go to the July livestock festival, Primo decided to bring along a couple of the chickens. Problem was, none of us had ever caught and handled a chicken. This was in the days -- actually, just a couple of days --before Primo became a premier chicken wrangler. The hens laid enough eggs to keep us in yolk, we left them alone to do their job. That was the deal.
I sent Primo and his friend out to catch said chickens... about ten minutes went by... I resisted the urge to check on them... another ten minutes went by... and the boys came tumbling in the back door, defeated. They begged me to come out and help them. I considered my options. Confess to two twelve-year-old boys that the chickens kinda scared me too? Or just get out there and catch a darn chicken?
I couldn't let the chickens get the upper foot, though their prehistoric feet do creep me out. So I screwed my courage to the sticking place, waded into the chicken coop, grabbed a darn chicken far, far away from those feet, and shoved it into the travel cage. Primo's friend said, in an admiring tone, "Wow, Mrs. B can do anything."
Whenever I have to face up to some challenge, that line still echoes in my head. Even if I might not necessarily believe in the truth of it at the time.
About a month ago, I faced a situation that I wasn't sure I was strong enough to handle. That twelve-year-old's voice kept me plodding along, minute by minute and day by day. I dealt with issues as they came up, tried not to spend too much time in the murky waters of hypotheticals, and kept reminding myself that I could do anything.
And I knit. The situation meant that I had a lot of down time in little tiny increments, so I kept a sock close at hand and did a row or two here or there. Before I knew it, these socks, which had been aging in my unfinished object pile for a year, were almost done. A little more time pool-side, and they were finished.
I wasn't sure if I was going to like the finished product, but as it turns out, I love them, especially because I managed to make them as close to matching as is possible with handcrafted items. The pattern is called "Stand up for Stripes", but I prefer to think of them as my Backbone Socks. A reminder, like that twelve-year-old boy's voice, that it's there when I need it; I just gotta remember that I have it.