Rays of sunlight pass through the glass window of a small wooden house where the well-known old woman knitter lives. Every morning, she would sit on her wooden rocking chair placed beside the window and would knit all day. It is her favorite spot of the house because of the ecstatic energy that sunlight gives her, which she believes bring magic on her creations. Not only that, the sunlight also replenishes the skin on her face, arms and shoulders that makes her feel two decades younger and stronger. Nature has its supernatural ways of providing human beings to heal and renew.
The old woman, already in her mid-seventies, have been knitting since she was twelve. She instantly fell in love with knitting dresses and scarves since her mother showed her how to gracefully flick two needles over colorful yarns. She was certain then that knitting was what she will love doing for the rest of her life.
She is well-known in town and nearby cities not only for her knitting prowess but also for her astonishing wisdom. A young lady from the adjacent city sought her to make a scarf and a pair of mittens in preparation for the winter season, and to ask questions that might help her figure out what she should pursue in the university.
The old woman made hot cuppa for her inquisitive visitor. She knew it is going to be a quite and meaningful conversation between them. After the young lady described how she wanted the scarf and mittens to look like, she started telling the story of her life, seeking for clarity and guidance.
“I will be going to a university soon, but I still don’t know what I really want to take for study.” The young lady said.
The old woman knitter stared at the bright sky over the slightly opened glass window. Then she spoke, “We were raised in a society that teaches what we should do and how we should do it. Go to a university and get a degree that will give prestige to our name and a good scoop of money.
“We were taught that success is about working hard, earning money, acquiring properties and to live a comfortable life. Because of that, we intertwined comfort and material abundance with peace and happiness.
“In my long life, I have learned that making more money will somehow give us peace and happiness because it reduces worry on how we will eat, drink and sleep in a secured shelter. But it is a deception. Both peace and happiness are states of soul — invaluable energies that can only stir from within. They do not depend on what is happening on the outside, either do not care what we have and do not have.
“Most often, we believe that peace is the product of the absence of worries and concerns of the world. But the truth is, in order to gain peace, we need to give ourselves time to heal from our fears so that we will not tremble easily in times of ordeals and chaos.
“I never went to a university because I knew that what I wanted to do for the rest of my life is to knit dresses, scarves, mittens and toys. There was no specific course for knitting that I can study for four years and get a diploma. I never even considered taking arts and crafts classes because they teach only a little about knitting and would jump on other creative classes. I did not take my love for knitting in partial. I was certain that I can discover and improve so much more in four years of consistent practice and focus on my craft rather than go to a university and study subjects that do not interest me.
“I wouldn’t be who I am today if I did knitting without my whole being in it, and people will not come to me to make beautiful and extraordinary knitted pieces and fabrics for people important to them.”
Signs of confusion started to form on young lady’s face. She could not grasped everything the old woman was saying, but as she watched her knit, there were unspoken messages that made her understand what success, peace and happiness mean.
“I do not know yet what it is really that I want to do for the rest of my life. You are lucky, you knew it early. What about me?” She said to the old woman still knitting earnestly.
“Keep exploring and trying. As you do, be patient with yourself. Always trust that whatever you do at present is the way to what awaits you in the future. Not all the time that life and dreams are clear and smooth to us. It is a journey of making efforts to figure out what we are called to do without the assurance that it will give us answers. It is a courageous act — to take risks. Destination is not always the prize but the experiences, endurance and values that we will encounter as we walk along the rough road.
“In each thing we do, even if it seems irrelevant and nothing sublime is happening, it will give us clues to what we are looking for. Every stroke of my needles and yarn does not seem so much of a significance. It is the consistent and continuous creation of stitches that makes beautiful garments,” the old knitter explained.
“I want to know more but I do not intend disturbing you all day. I will come back after three days to claim these beautiful knitted scarf and mittens that I will give to my mother as presents,” said the young lady.
The old woman smiled, “The reason you are here is because of love. You want to give your mother a scarf and mittens that will give her protection from the cold weather. Giving gift is a gesture of love. You are on the right path.”
“How do you say so?”
“When you do things because of love, it will always guide you to where you are meant to be. Come back when I finish your mother’s knits and I will tell you some more.” The old woman smiled even brighter. She knew the young lady was finally getting what she was trying to make her understand.
The young lady smiled back and motioned herself to leave. “Thank you. I will come back and you’ll tell me some more.” She tried to hide her excitement from the old woman but her body language showed it all.
Synopsis: A young lady visited an old woman who is known for knitting. She asked for knitted garments, but got more from the old woman as they talked about what she wants to do with her life. This is just the first visit and there will be more revelations as she comes back for the second, and more, maybe.
Read the story of the young lady's second visit here: 2nd Visit: The Old Knitter Speaks of Love
ABOUT THE WRITER:
Madylene Tuazon is a writer and the founder of Creative Thoughts. Her mission in life is to co-create valuable works through writing and encourage creative people to embrace their gifts and share it to the world.
She says, “There is a strong urge from the core of my soul that I have to let my thoughts, wisdom and stories out through a platform that is accessible by people all over the world.”
She is from Manila, Philippines.