Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Knitting & Weaving with a Migraine

It's not been the worst of migraines. . . not like the ones I used to get which were accompanied by throbbing pain, light sensitivity & gastrointestinal pyrotechnics, but nevertheless it's here. The thing I've noticed over the last year or two is that although the pain & nausea are much better than they used to be, my brain just doesn't work right when a migraine hits. Things that out to be completely obvious & easy to do become a challenge. Things like knowing what day it is & getting to the right place at the right time, or getting my clothes on right-side-out.

When the migraines were diagnosed a few years ago, that's when I started knitting again after a very long break. It was about all I could manage to do, to sit in a room with subdued light and handle yarn. The rhythm of the activity and feel of the fiber was soothing. It was during this time that I began to spin yarn too, which I consider to be the ultimate relaxing activity for me, other than, say, having a purring kitty snuggling on my chest as I do right now.

So yesterday, as I was trying to complete my weaving homework for class, it was *not a convenient time* for me to get a headache. I had woven the small m's & o's design as assigned by my teacher, and was planning to experiment with the size & arrangement of the blocks to create a different design. I wrote out a new treadling sequence which I thought would bring a symmetrical, but different, appearance to the fabric, but in weaving it got what looked to me like cottage cheese. Totally unimpressive. And I wasn't getting what I should have in the way of blocks of floats (which, if you really look, you just might be able to see in the first section of the sample). So I re-wove the assigned sequence. More cottage cheese. Good grief. Did some evil troll visit and reconfigure my treadle tie-ups? Or is it just that my brain is not working? Imitrex works, definitely, on the headache, but the brain fuzz remains.

Maybe today is a good day for un-knitting. I think just maybe I could accomplish that. The lace shawls (yes, all three Fiddlesticks designs in progress) are set aside today. The sweater sleeve (which also serves as my swatch), started awhile back out of Mountain Colors, is being frogged. I was using size 6 needles and decided that a 5 would yield a closer knit fabric, one that will be warmer this winter.


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