The other day I was in Kelly's Yoga Barre class at SPICE. At the end of class, after stretching, we all lie down and close our eyes for shavasana, or corpse pose. Aptly named, because after Kelly's classes, I am pretty much dead. Kidding, not kidding. Anyway, while we lie there, awake but fully relaxed, Kelly gives us some gentle suggestions on how to breathe and how to focus. The other day she said, "Notice, without judgment, how your body feels..." Her words really struck me. "Notice without judgment" Looking at ourselves, our bodies, and our efforts "without judgment" is something most of us -- especially women -- are not very good at.
At the shop, we see this all the time. A brand new knitter will note the bumpy edge of her garter stitch practice piece and ask how to "fix that mistake". She'll point to the stockinette section and ask what she did wrong to make it curl like that. Noticing without judgment is how we learn. Garter stitch has a bumpy edge. Stockinette curls. Bound-off stitches are tight. A yarnover makes a tiny hole in the fabric. These things in our knitting are neither good nor bad, they just are. What's important is that we take the time to learn and understand what happens when we do this or that so we can choose to repeat or avoid such again.
As we notice and learn, we must be gentle and compassionate with ourselves. Our efforts do not define us. Our success or failure in knitting, or barre class, or anything else, is not who we are, but a thing we do. Each moment, each day, we try, we do, we learn, we improve. And we notice, without judgment, how it all unfolds.
I look forward to seeing you in the shop and around the table. You are always welcome here. ~Ellen