Longitude Dude!

May 31Resistance is fertile.  Sometimes my mind makes wonderful slips like this which allow me to view my experience in a new light.  Resistance of all kinds–delay, confusion, an obstacle–creates a kind of holding space where I am able to regroup and assess the situation, to get my bearings before taking my next leap.  Perhaps all movement, change and flow would wear me out.  Resistance slows me down, brings me back to the blessed and, at times, frustrating here and now…Resistance is a message from my soul to stop and discern.  Does this mean “not now” or “never”?  Is it an invitation to forge ahead despite the resistance?  There is an element of risk in every undertaking, whether one has just begun or is still trucking after many years…

It’s been almost 4 years since I started knitting this rope to the ocean.  You would think by now I could just settle down and enjoy the journey instead of setting dates in my head about when the rope will reach the water and fantasizing about the after party.  Today my co-conspirator and I decided to measure the rope’s progress, to “unfurl” it all the way.  It was fun to go back in time with the line.  I pointed out how the rope goes from skinny to fat marking the “lean” years before I entered the monastery and the “fat” years after my return.  We saw the thicker, darned segment where I stitched the torn line back together again after it got wrenched apart in the swirling innards of the hapless street sweeper.  My excitement built steadily as we continued down block after block and the hose reel was still looking full as if it would never run out.  Even after we had unwound the line to the start of the boardwalk, it looked like there was ample rope to take us all the way down to the water.  We passed several people who inquired about our strange activity including one man who drove away laughing his head off, while my boyfriend kept remarking, “You’ve done a LOT of knitting.”

He and I took turns rolling the line back onto the hosereel and up the hill like a deranged cowgirl and ranger.  It was like a metaphor for relationship–pacing ourselves, trying to stay in sync with each other, communicating, getting tangled and untangled, cheering each other on, sweating and laughing.  The longer I am in relationship, the more it seems sheer grace and miracle to have made it this far…At my age with my baggage.  I am filled with awe when I think of couples who have made it 20, 40, 60 years together.

Later, C. called me on my cellphone during dinner hour to ask me about the status of the rope and whether it had reached the water.  I guess she couldn’t contain her curiosity long enough to wait until tomorrow morning!  Yep, I’ll be back on the bench for God-knows-how-much-longer.  I couldn’t believe my eyes when the line stopped about 2/3rd’s of the way down the boardwalk.  I’m doing okay though I’ll admit it was a bit of a letdown.  I’ve given it my all this month, and I was hoping to complete the project before I starting to teach an art class at the end of June.  But, like every artwork that I’ve ever done, this project has a mind of its own, its own mysterious due date.  And as with many experiences that require persevering hope, I am usually “done” way before the work is. How do I stay open and teachable after I’ve reached the point where I am done, where I feel like I’ve already given my all?  How do I increase my capacity to hold the discomfort?  I think it’s realizing that I am not done, that no one is ever done.  For to live is to grow and fail and celebrate and love and lose and grieve and bruise and get back up on the bench and keep knitting…


3 thoughts on “Longitude Dude!

  1. thrownfree says:

    Love reading your daily knit journals! They are a highlight. I’m glad you’re not done yet–for what will the blog be without the sits on the bench?

    I’m sure you’ll find something else wonderful to write about :)!


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