Well, the day after I posted about bunny’s pajamas, I succumbed to the non-COVID (we tested a whole lot of times) respiratory crud my kid brought home from school, except that what was sniffles for her was…a lot more than that for me. It utterly flattened me. I was basically not functional for about 5 straight days, and I’m still not back to 100% now, two weeks later. And during that time, the thing we knew was going to happen happened: the Supreme Court stripped women (and anyone with a uterus) of the right to bodily autonomy. It was so bizarre to experience that while unable to do anything other than scroll through things on my phone from the couch; I wanted to rage but I mostly just felt numb and hopeless. I couldn’t even knit while I was sick – it just took too much energy. So it has just been awful news upon awful news and nothing to do but let it rain down while I was curled up on the couch with a fever.
I can’t think of much to say that I didn’t already say in my Mother’s Day post – and on that front, it has been galling to watch the utter lack of response from the Biden administration. If I could think through all of the implications of the leaked opinion back in May, why were they, with all of the resources of the federal government, so unprepared for the moment it became reality? All they could do was try to use it as a fundraising opportunity, and as a reminder for us all to vote. And then seeing the court agree to hear the Moore v. Harper case, which could allow state legislatures to determine the winners of elections…how are we supposed to solve things by voting when our votes may or may not even be counted? And then yet another mass shooting in Highland Park, IL on the 4th of July, in which the heavily armed shooter was somehow apprehended alive, even though a traffic stop ended in the cops mowing down Jayland Walker with more than 60 bullets. It’s not that I wanted the cops to kill the mass shooter – it’s that if they can manage to not kill a white mass shooter, they have no excuse for murdering black young men who are not mass shooters.
And what a chilling effect these shootings create on mass gatherings of the sort we need in order to have any hope of changing things. Under a post-Heller interpretation of the Second Amendment, we lose meaningful access to our rights under the First Amendment; if we run the risk of being mowed down by a shooter when we assemble, when we speak…then we don’t actually have those freedoms.
I finally felt up to knitting towards the end of last week, and so I picked my Birch pullover back up and got myself past the part where you separate out the stitches for the sleeves. It’s going to take quite a while to finish, given that half-fisherman’s rib basically requires you to knit two rows for each row that shows up as a knit stitch on the right side, and it’s in fingering weight on size 2 needles.
It does feel AMAZING when I squeeze it, and I think it will be a nice addition to my wardrobe…but it’s a LOT of half-fisherman’s rib, and a LOT of grey, and maybe an endless sea of grey is not the best project if I’m already feeling like I’m drowning in awfulness? If I’m in the mood for something repetitive, I’ll pull it out and work a few rounds, but I don’t think I can possibly focus all of my energy on it right now. Everything just feels too grim.
Yesterday, I was overcome by the urge to revisit one of my failed projects from early in the pandemic: the Waterbearer Cardigan. I had goofed up the brioche collar several times over, and while I probably could have ripped back and just reknit the messed-up part, it had been so long since I looked at the pattern that I wasn’t sure I could do that without creating an even bigger mess. So I ripped the whole thing out, and I’m starting over. Hopefully I’ll have better luck this time. It’d be nice if something could turn out good.
2022 has just been such an awful year so far. Between two of our cats dying and all of the news I mentioned in this post, and having to give up our plans to visit my family in Wisconsin, plus learning that the BA.5 variant of COVID seems to be at least as infectious as measles yet we’ve basically given up on all mitigation and protection and support…it just all feels so very grim and I’m trying so hard not to sink into a dark place as I look ahead towards Fall Semester.