Travel Knitting

I am not a good traveler.  I’m a neurotic mess of worry anytime I know I have to submit myself to airports, potential traffic jams, or long periods of confinement.  I just don’t do well.

Flying is particularly bad.  I get more and more nervous with each passing moment (starting up to two or three days ahead of time), and peak with anxiety in the moments before takeoff.

Once the plane is in the air, I’m OK.  Not great, but I can deal.  It almost becomes a personal battle of wills, like I am having a stubborn match with the plane.  The plane will continue to try to make me sick and nervous, and I will continue to try to ignore it.  It’s really hard to win this sort of battle… but I feel I accomplish it alright.

I’ve learned recently that if I can control something about my space, I do better.  For this trip it was stubbornly listening to a knitting podcast with my eyes closed in the terminal, doping myself up on Dramamine, and spending the majority of the flight working on my lace project.

I’m not sure that lace is the best thing for airplanes – I kept losing count because of random distractions (I didn’t bring stitch markers… dummy), and there’s not a lot of room to spread out, but lace was the best project for ME on an airplane.

The simple act of counting and following the pattern repeat became a frustrating yet calming place for my mind to go.  I wasn’t worried about the turbulence (thank you Dramamine), I was worried about where my yarn over went.

I may need to rip out the entirety of what I have done when I get back to VA (no reason to try to fix it before the flight back when I’ll just mess it up again), but for this trip, lace saved my sanity.

I just don’t think the sock I’m knitting could have done that for me. Rows and rows of plain stockinette in a circle would not have given my mind something to actively concentrate on, it would have been something for my hands to do while my brain stewed.

So thank you, lace.  And thank you to whoever invented lace.  Putting those tiny little holes at pre-determined spots in my knitting enabled me to survive a plane ride better than I have in years (except for the one I slept through… that was pretty good).

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