October 24, 2009

She, Born Organized and Finishing things...

(Spiral pinwheel jacket, made of Noro, with lace edging; a former UFO, finished and submitted to detention in HPHC, winning second prize)

I've been knitting along with the Harry Potter House Cup on Ravelry since February this year, and I'm beginning to realize how much the process of being creative on demand for a long period of time has changed me.

Before I joined HPHC, I used to have lots of ufo's, stashed everywhere. In fact, one of the reasons I joined the group was the class project in January--'organize your stash and queue'. Getting organized appealed to me. I knew I needed to have some focus, and I was hoping they would run that class again. About April, when I realized that they weren't going to run the class again, I gathered up all my wool, and sorted it into my insane wall of stash. I found most of my ufo's, and put them into one place. I sorted projects into project bags. In a fit of reality about May, I frogged a lot of items that I would never finish, and I let go of a huge stash of needles, mostly plastic circulars, to bless someone else (who loves them). I sorted my tools, and kept what I knew I loved and would use, and let go of the rest to bless someone else.

(The organ we rearranged our entire house to have, getting rid of a piano, and a book shelf, to make room for the organ, my youngest daughter's dream instrument).

Along the way, I knit and I knit. Man, have I knit! HPHC has made me realize that I am a deadline oriented person. I like creativity with a deadline. When points are on the line, I finish things. 6 projects a month, and two Owls (larger project) since April, and I've actually gotten Christmas presents knit, already, and it is only October. What is the world coming to?

After 9 months with HPHC, I've also come to realize I have a hard time with the finishing stages of creativity. Not the seaming, journaling and taking pictures of my knitted creations--no, that part is easy; it gets me points. What I find hard is the very last parts of letting go: the putting away the last few bits of left overs or sending them off to bless someone else, the wrapping, boxing and mailing, all the little tidying portions of finishing a job.

This is the essence of 'she--ness': not being able or willing to tidy up the mess, and let go of the process, maybe because we think that it won't happen again. I think it comes from the wish to stay in that creative space, and continue the fun. But, I've come to realize that the tidying up portion is necessary to the process. With out the tidying portion, there isn't any space to continue to create because all those other leftover wishes get in the way. I need clear space (both physical and time related) to create, and to get it, I have to let go. I have to shine my sink, and tidy my desk. I have to put away my tools, thin out the unnecessary supplies, and purge the bits that will bless someone else more than me. And, it is hard for me to do, because I have to take that leap of faith that I will be able to create again.

But, nine months in HPHC has taught me that I can do just that--finish the job, put away the extra, and let the process happen again. And, I get a lot of knitted items to bless others with along the way. Yeah, HPHC.

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