Thursday, January 17, 2008

Mom's Shawl


Today would have been my mother's 99th birthday. When I saw her on her birthday last year, she had an assortment of blankets and afghans to keep her warm, but I was in a knitting sort of mood and offered to knit her a shawl to keep her warm. "What color?," I asked. "Pink," she said.

I had a hard time finding a pattern for an interesting, yet easy shawl, and finally decided on one that called for seven to 12 different colors of yarn, to knit in increasingly wider rows of randomly selected color stripes. It was not easy to find seven to 12 shades of pink, but I bought an assortment of yarns in different colors and textures, including some that were not pink, for interest, including that furry "fun" yarn that was all the rage a few years ago, but now can be had for $1 a ball (down from $4 or $5).

I had imagined creating a gentle, romantic, warm pink cloud. In reality, my jumbled colors seemed loud and not clearly thought out. I kept showing it to people, asking if they liked it. They did, but I didn't really believe them.

When I returned to visit my mother in February, I brought the shawl project, but held off showing it to her. By that time, I reluctantly realized she was dying and just didn't want to see a look of disappointment when I showed the raucous shawl to her. So, I sat by her side in the hospital and knitted while she slept. Finally, I showed it to her and she smiled. A beautiful, heart-warming smile. She actually liked it, and she understood it was for her.

I didn't finish it before she died, and I set it aside for a while. I picked it up again recently and decided to finish it. It's a nice, warm project to work during these cold winter months, and it reminds me of her. I have to say I like it more now. It would have really brightened up that nursing home.

Happy Birthday, Mom!

9 comments:

cellodonna said...

What a cozy-looking lovely shawl! With teary eyes I'm wishing your mom a happy birthday too. It's always sad to lose a parent.

It's good that she got to see your expression of love via the shawl-in-progress.

Paulette said...

What a wonderful tribute to finish this great shawl for her birthday. My Mom's greatest treasures are those made by her children. I am sure your Mom is beaming away and showing all her angel friends your beautiful pink cloud!

Maricello said...

Thanks to both of you for your good wishes! I was thinking, somehow, that posting the photo on the Internet would make it easier for her to see it, floating out there is space, or however the Internet operates. :-)

I'm a little murky on the technology aspects, but it is nice to share this with you, and other loving moms and daughters.

MusicGal said...

What a beautiful shawl! I didn't know that you knit, or maybe I did but just forgot...
Anyway, as Paulette said, I'm sure the shawl is the envy of all the angels!

Gottagopractice said...

I love the thought of her spirit seeing it better because it's on your blog. And I'm happy that you have such a beautiful memory.

melissa said...

What a beautiful shawl and story. Thank you for sharing it with us.

CelloGeek said...

What a beautiful shawl. I'm glad your mom got to see it. Thanks for sharing your story. And happy birthday to your mom!

Emily said...

Knitting is just one of those things that is more than the sum of its parts. It's the time spent working on something that is the real gift. The fact that you continued to work on the shawl after your mom's passing is a beautiful thing: if we want to hold people close in our memories, then we should continue to include them in our daily lives.

Maricello said...

Many thanks to all who commented and e-mailed and mentioned this post in conversation. It is good to know such wonderful, caring people.
Mom would thank you too. :-)