Saturday, July 22, 2006

Hookin'

Wednesday on a whim I bought two new crochet books. I haven't crocheted since......ooooh, 1992 and at that time it was only a brief stab at making an afghan for my unborn daughter. It went unfinished but I'm now back in full swing due to one little pattern in the book.

Recently crochet has had a revival. I've seen funky new hats, granny squares in all sorts of purses, hats, sweaters. Crocheted flowers....BIG. The Stich And Bitch lady put out a new book

My sister is the crocheter in the family these days. My mom used to crochet and when she took it up again several years ago to occupy her time and take her mind off her chemo I encouraged her to knit. It was so much cooler. Hipper. Not so dorky. But, I didn't always feel that way.

In truth, I learned to crochet when I was about three years old. That's roughly 34 years ago if you're doing the math. My father's mother, my Memere took care of me some days while my mom was at work. She did elaborate crocheting....bedspreads, tablecloths, doilies. I'd love to see that stuff today but I've become estranged from my father and Memere has long since passed. My Aunt and Uncle must have pieces.

My grandmother hated my mother and would tell me so in ways she probably shouldn't have told a 3 year old. I can remember her telling me that she'd NEVER hurt me and that my mother is afraid of that. I was her favorite, My cousin Tricia was adopted and she didn't like her. Looking back now and hearing stories from my Aunt and Mom, my grandmother definitely had psyche issues but she was creative and taught me to crochet. Today they tell me she was crazy and can laugh at her antics.

I don't have all that many early childhood memories. I'm sure I blocked out a ton, living with an alcoholic (her son) who verbally abused my mother. I'm sure it was stressful and I remember the fighting. But i have bunches of memories of my Memere and me crocheting in her apartment which was downstairs from my parents. Of her chair that had flat wooden arms with scratched out grooves she had made with her nails. I remember the crinkling of her colostomy bag. I remember she'd give me gingerale but warming the glass first under warm water so I wouldn't get a stomach ache so she told me. She'd give me these maple cookies that were shaped like a maple leaf and she made me my all time favorite sandwich which was an open faced grilled cheese. Take a slice of bread, butter it and top it with small squares of cheddar cheese. Broil until bubbly. MMMMHMMMM good.

So, today I crocheted a hat (pictures to come tomorrow hopefully, along with two knit hats I made) and I felt connected to my dysfunctional grandmother who loved me very much despite her kooky craziness. I cherish those happy days I had with her and the craftiness she bestowed in me at such a young age.

Goddamn. I'm crying.

Pictures to come of the knitted cowboy hat which is too large (currently trying to shrink it in the dryer), the black hat with the white skull make of lambs pride and the stripped London beanie.

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