It’s been a while.
My friend did die, just before Christmas, ten years after diagnosis, which occurred six months after the first seizure, the first sign of the tumour. I am still amazed by how well he was for so many of those years. Of course there were times when he was not well, when the seizures returned, when he went through treatments and so much monitoring of a tumour that could not be completely excised due to its position. I felt I was lucky to have him as a friend for so long. The sadness is only hitting now, four months later. It is strange to realise that I knew him for almost half his life, and that he had his tumour for half of that time. The death was a much greater shock for our mutual friend who seemed to think that when an abnormal growth is called a tumour, it is not a terminal condition, even when it is a brain tumour. And that would explain the difference in our responses when it was diagnosed – I was almost hysterical, she was calm. I spent the next ten years enjoying every moment I spent with my friend, appreciating all that was unique in our friendship. So of course I wanted to email him when he died, to tell him he had chosen a terrible time, so close to Christmas. Could he not have waited another month? It would have been so much better for his family. And as with all other significant deaths, I find myself saving up anecdotes to tell him, or looking forward to asking his opinion on some matter. That is all a part of someone dying.
On a happier note, I did finish the cotton blanket I was crocheting. It was only after joining all of the motifs (crochet slip stitch) that I noticed that people can crochet motifs together as they go along, and felt a little demoralised that after so many years of crochet it had never occurred to me that I could do that. I knitted too much, hurt my right index finger, but could still crochet, so in no time at all I used a lot of my scrappy 8 ply wool stash to crochet another blanket, this one copied from a really beautiful photo on Pinterest (that I did not reference at all, and I don’t have a Pinterest account, sigh). The main motivation was to use the approach of joining motifs as I went along.
After making a central square of motifs, about four or five motifs wide, I began to crochet enough centres for a side or two, then connected them to the blanket.
I don’t know the origin of this pattern, and did come across it on another blog a week ago, slightly different in the final round… I am happy with my finished blanket, and the border that just happened on its own – the corners are very strange, I just made it up as I went along, then had to refer to previously worked corners to make them match.
And now I have started another blanket, what an addiction! The motif is my favourite from the cotton blanket, with an extra round to be worked, and motifs to be joined as I go along. I especially ordered the yarn for this one, a special edition from Bendigo Woollen Mills. That shade card is very worn now, with all the folding I did as I kept changing my mind about one or two colours. I am very careful to avoid having multiple projects in any single craft, as I don’t want to ‘end up like my mother’, whose house is cluttered with works in progress (and probably just as many completed projects).
We do use the blankets. But just how many do we need? Answer: as many as I need to make!