Being Human

There are days like this.  Days when, no matter what I try to do, I fail.

Witness this little ball of yarn.  YYarnBallou have already inferred, I am sure, from the ramen-like quality of the thread that this little ball of yarn is the result of undoing a few stitches.  Actually, it’s from undoing a lot of stitches:  16 rows of the border of a triangular lace shawl, to be precise.  I tried to take it back just 8 rows (which would have been to the point where the error occurred), but it turns out I am about as skilled as a three-toed sloth playing cat’s cradle when it comes to undoing a few rows when those rows contain eyelets and double decreases and everything else.

I tried.  I really tried.  I tried picking up the stitches and working back bit by bit over what remained.  It turns out I am hopelessly lost when it comes to figuring out the order of stitches where even the simplest of lace patterns is involved.  Cables — yes, I can figure out cables if I dropped a stitch; lace — no.  I suck.

The other thing I suck at is proofreading my own work.  I emailed a PDF of some design samples to a prospective employer, one who I had just spoken to on the telephone this morning.  I had told this prospective employer that I had spoken with one of his peers and had learned that he likes to surround himself with only the best people, so I told him that I would definitely be in that category.  And then I emailed him the design samples.  And then I took a look over those samples and I discovered two typos.

On top of that, I completely forgot about an appointment that was to have been today at 2:00 p.m.  I’d been awake around 3:30 a.m. and working.  At 10:00 a.m. I decided I could have a bit of a nap.  At 2:05 p.m. I awoke and realized what I had forgotten.

Honesty and humility go hand-in-hand for me.  I have to be honest with myself and with other people, and being honest means I have to admit that I am not perfect.  I make mistakes in knitting.  I make mistakes in proofreading.  I make mistakes with my schedule.  I make all kinds of mistakes.  Mistakes are what make me human.

I don’t like them.  I truly do not like making mistakes.  I do not like making mistakes and I certainly do not like finding out about mistakes some hours after the mistakes have been made.

I worked through an entire eight-row pattern repeat before I saw the error in the lace border.  It wasn’t an obvious error, and it was only on one of the two triangles that make up the shawl so I was thinking that perhaps no one else would notice, especially if I photographed it just right.  But I couldn’t do that.  It wouldn’t be honest.  It’s a shawl I plan to submit for publication, and it wouldn’t have been honest to submit a flawed item.

So, as hard as it is to admit that I am not perfect, as hard as it is to have to email a prospective employer with a corrected PDF, as hard as it is to call someone and admit that I was sleeping instead of remembering the appointment, and as hard as it is to start again on the border of the shawl, I have to admit that the honesty about all of it actually helps me to feel free to start again.  The prospective employer might strike me off his list.  There were a lot of hours of work lost on the shawl.  I won’t get that appointment made up until next week.  But I am human, and I’m learning to be OK with that.