Tuesday, August 19, 2008

21 Inches


21 inches is a lot of ribbing.

This isn't a bad thing. I've been in need of a bit of comfort knitting lately, and working 2 x 2 ribbing in this delightfully soft alpaca-silk (Debbie Bliss alpaca silk dk) has been very comforting. But I'm coming up on 20 inches now, and the next part of this sweater calls for 60 inches of...lace. I'm not quite sure how I managed to ignore that part when I cast on for this in a fit of disgust over the lace sweater I was struggling with at the time; I seem to have untapped reserves of denial.

I think I'm going to need some new comfort knitting to get me through it. Not to mention the rest of the day.

Today is the first day of school here. I find it odd that school starts in mid-August. When I was a kid, it started in mid-September, and my kids are growing up in the same city as I did. In fact, my younger son actually started school in mid-July this year. He's just had a week off and returns today. My older son is starting...I'm having trouble with this...middle school today. He seems okay with it. It's his mother who's quietly falling apart.

I hated junior high (which is what they had instead of middle school when I was a kid). Absolutely hated it. Everything about it. It's a horrible time of life in the first place. There isn't enough money in the world to convince me to be 13 again. And I went to a particularly snobby, rich school, where I had neither the family, nor the money, nor the clothes to fit in. At all. I was too tall and too skinny and too shy. And a "brain". (Which, paradoxically, was my saving grace. I didn't care at all that smart wasn't cool. I knew damned well that smart was going to end up being more important than cute or cool in the long run. I was right, by the way. But it still sucked not to be cute or cool.)

So putting my little boy on the bus (at 6:55 in the morning!), which he's never ridden before, with a bunch of 7th and 8th graders, and watching it pull away to take him to the Bad Place awoke more than a few of my old demons. What if the other kids are mean to him? What if they laugh at him? What if he can't find the bathroom? What if the teacher yells at him? What if he gets hurt in gym class?

Realistically, I know that this child is smart and capable and outgoing, and even the nastiest comments roll right off his back without dimming his megawatt smile. Since kindergarten, he has always been at the center of any pack of kids; I used to find him after school by looking for the biggest clump of kids. He was always in the middle of it. He'll be fine. I know this. I'm just having trouble believing it.

12 comments:

kmkat said...

I'm having trouble wrapping my mind around 60 inches of lace. That's not a sweater, girl, that's a blanket! Perhaps you meant 6 inches?

trek said...

He will be fine.

And you will be, too.

5elementknitr said...

I had to send my little one to kindergarten last week.

I guess it doesn't get any easier as they get older?

Heartbreaking...

Tammy said...

Ahhh... We would've been good friends in junior high.

Khalila said...

Good luck with the first week of school! My son doesn't start until the week after labor day, and I'm taking every spare minute before hand to spend time with him. It's first grade and his first full day of school, and I won't see him until late afternoon!

Hang in there.

knitwitmama said...

I'm with you, girl. My youngest starts jr. high tomorrow. Luckily I get to walk with her (well, not really, she'll make me walk 10 paces behind her) My tough one this week was putting my oldest on a plane to college. He is going to VA, 3000, count them, 3000 miles away. I know he'll be fine, but I worry too, will he like his roommate, can he find his classrooms, what if he gets sick..... ah parenting, the letting go is the hardest. Thankfully, knitting gives me peace.

TheBlackSheep said...

eeeewwwww! Jr. High. Yuck. You couldn't pay me to go back either. However, as Trek said, he'll be fine and so will you.

vanfox23 said...

60 inches of lace on top of 21 inches of ribbing? wow that is almost 3 feet taller than me!!! LOL!! Good luck on it, hope you don't get too frustrated with the lace. I can't wait to see this one!

My girls start school next Tuesday. In one way I don't want it to start--one is going into 4th grade and the other into 1st. Time went so slow when I was in school and now it is flying. However, when they are fighting with each other, I don't know if I will survive the next 6 days! The first day of school is always a tear jerker.

Steph B said...

Sounds like we would've been good buddies in junior high. I was also not cute, not cool, not athletic, but a "brain"...and to make things worse, my mom taught right down the hall. So you can guess how the other kids explained my good grades. But you know what? We survived, and our kids will too. I'm always amazed at how much stronger my kids are than I realize, and I bet the same is true of yours.

Tracy said...

Funny how different and yet similar our lives are. My youngest is now in her 4th year of college and that worries me more than sending her to kindergarten, Jr. High, High School or even her first year of college ever did. I guess you never cease worrying about your kids.

I keep telling myself I raised her with the intention of sending her out into the world and that's what is happening. While I actually get to see her 2 or 3 times a year now, I know soon that might not even be the case. If that isn't the stuff comfort knitting is made for I don't know what is! It looks like I'll be knitting blankets soon. :o)

Really? 60 inches of lace on a sweater??? Huh?!? Egads woman you are in fragile state of mind.

Haley said...

hope the first day went well. my son has his first day of preschool in two weeks and i'm freaking out. i guess it's a mom thing.

quiltyknitwit said...

Junior high was an ugly phase in my life! Middle school wasn't the favorite part of my kids' lives, but they survived it okay. I was lucky in that I didn't have separation anxiety when my kids started new things - they seem to just take things in stride, thank God.