The word confidence deserves to have so many letters in it,  a shorter word wouldn’t quite seem to do justice to the massive effect confidence,  or lack of it can have on a person.

          As a child, I was never what you would call academically  brilliant,  but even then I loved a puzzle and was gifted with an inquisitive mind, looking not so much towards the accumulation of knowledge in my head but more the ability to use my hands, the how to’s and what for’s of everyday life and living.

          I wouldn’t look at a broken object with disappointed eyes, instead my eyes would glint with the thought of being allowed to take it apart and poke around inside.

          Then, towards the end of my childbearing years, my life had a major hiccup.  Most of me made it through this time to still be around today, but I think the biggest casualties were my memory and my confidence.

          I’ve learned to live with the lack of memory, there are things you can do to compensate for it, memory tricks, regular routines, it can be frustrating, especially for those around me, but it can be managed, however, when my confidence dissappears, it can be almost crippling.

          Imagine standing at the edge of the curb waiting for sometimes ten minutes or more for gap in the traffic big enough for you to believe you can get all the way across the road. Or alternatively,  imagine how frightening it is to have to put your whole trust in a complete stranger as you step off the curb behind them praying they’ve left enough spare time for you to cross in their wake and that you won’t meet a grizzly end flattened against the front of a speeding lorry.

          I may joke now, but the feeling is very real at the time.

          Don’t get me wrong, sometimes  I’m fine and will cross the road without even giving it a second thought, but sometimes I worry that the day when I will be the little old lady with the walking stick waiting for the boy scout to take her across the road is nearer than I would like to think.

          Every so often my confidence rises to within normal limits, why, only a few months ago I felt able to try something new, I tasted an aubergine.  I didn’t exactly dislike it, I think I even tried a second piece,  but I didn’t like it enough to add it to my limited variety of tastes.

          Aubergine didn’t leave me with much of an impression at all to be honest, I liked the look of it so much more than the taste,  that being the case, I don’t expect it will take very long for me to forget that I’ve tried it and walking past the box full of the beautiful deep colour in the supermarket will soon make me smile again.

          I’ve been knitting a throw for  Eldest Daughter. I haven’t knitted anything since the girls were small and even then I didn’t follow a pattern.  I used to just find something the same shape and size as the item I wanted to knit and use the measurements from that, making the rest up as I went along …  “progressive planning“.

          Eldest Daughter chose her colours, light grey and white for one set on a chequer board and darker grey for the opponent squares, with a possible blue to stitch it all together and away I went, making squares with intricate patterns using the two basic stitches, plain and purl, and moving the stitches around the squares with cables, holes, bobbles,  the fun was endless.

          Forty-eight squares I knitted, and stitched together,  it was decided to keep the grey colour scheme,  using the dark grey to do the stitching and a border.

          A border… This is where the confidence left me, the more I thought about it, the less I was able to do it and so the blanket has been just sitting there waiting for a solution.  A whole list of things to do has been backing up behind it, things I want to do and things I need to do, I and things I know I can do, but I know if I let myself skip the blanket and do something else until I find the solution,  I will never get back to it.

          The problem which has me beaten at the moment is how long to do the border.  I’ve knitted a short length and turned a corner, but the apparently easy answer of how many rows to knit before I turn the next corner to me is a huge decision, one which will either make or break the whole blanket.  Too long a border and it will gather up and sit like a frill, and too short a border will cause the squares to raise into lumps instead of lying flat.

          To make the squares I’ve counted rows and stitches, taking into account that different patterns have different tensions, and even the fact that different colours of the same wool are different thicknesses.   I’ve stitched the squares together with flexible stitches so there is a lot of give along the joins. There are no black and white rules to the squares, just a lot of grey areas. No pun intended.  So, for a solution to my problem I have reverted to the tapemeasure,  I’ve measured the squares, found an average,  multiplied by the number of squares on one side and given myself a number to remember,  52.

          I’ve knitted the border to 52inches between two corners and I have it fixed onto the blanket on one side at regular intervals, I have started to stitch it on with the same flexible stitches as the rest of the blanket, but even now (as I write this post instead of stitching it on) I am worrying that it won’t sit properly and the perfectionist in me will want to undo the stitches and start again.


3 thoughts on “Confidence

  1. I think this is the time where you should just go with the flow!! Do it… it will all work out well and remember… Eldest Daughter is waiting for her throw. You’d better get it done before she changes her colour scheme!! 😈

  2. Pingback: Pom-poms | Photographic Memories

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