It started a few months ago, when his grade 1 class learned how to fingerknit. And he has been fingerknitting little belts and strings in the car, at home, and even during a (long-ish) musical concert. He’ll ask if he can knit, then go to the little wooden shelf where I keep my modest stash of yarn, and fingerknit away. It’s marvelous.
He also asked me several months ago if he could do some knitting with two needles, and we tried. It was a bit too tricky, and we shelved the project for another day. And I confess that although he has asked me a few times since then to try knitting again, I’ve resisted, thinking it was still a bit too early to learn.
But I put it squarely on the table again, when I picked up the needles again myself a little while ago. Also, my son’s class is moving to knitting with needles soon too. This, and seeing me work, prompted him to ask again if he could learn to knit, and thank goodness I said yes.
Somehow, something seems to have shifted, and he is ready for it. He works hard at his knitting, because it is a challenge for such young hands. It’s not easy, but we are encouraged by all the little steps that show improvement, and I am amazed at how often he asks to knit. (Like when I am buckling all three kids into the car, for example.)
When we were working on a first little project, the metal needles kept slipping. I wondered aloud if we should try some bamboo needles, which might be less slippery. My oldest was very excited about that, and we quickly determined to go to our local yarn shop to buy him some bamboo needles just the right size for him, and a skein of his own yarn.
My son was so keen on going that he helped develop a plan: we could go while one of his younger brothers was in afternoon kindergarten and the other could be taken in the stroller and nap there. Also, he said, we could knit there.
And I realized that every word he spoke was true. My son has gone with me several times to the yarn shop, and seen the knitters who gather at its centre to knit together. Never have I sat there to knit; I have always been with a child, and also felt a bit shy to join in, as the knitters were experienced and knew each other.
But now I was fortified by an eager companion. We would go!
And we did, both of us doing something new, learning together.
And it was so nice.