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This year has seriously been a whirlwind of adventures, misadventures, events, catastrophes, triumphs, failures, and, above all else: change. Back in the day when I was smaller than I am now, my mom told me that the only constant (and predictable) thing in life is change. That’s basically the motto of my life: for example, the most obvious changes have been in location — the past year, I’ve lived in two countries and four states — but I’m also pretty sure I’m not the same person I was a mere twelve months ago. There are no words to describe or intimate all the ways my life has changed. For better or worse, I don’t know. It’s times like these (which, at the moment, feels like all the time) that I’ve found comfort in knitting. To me, it marks the time between what’s happened and what’s happening. A kind of reminder of where I’ve been and a reassurance that things get better (or at least different).

A summary of events:
(1) I finished my basic sciences portion of medical school.
(2) Passed the USMLE Step 1
(3) Started clinical rotations
(4) Realized I don’t hate Peds as much as I thought I would
(5) Realized I might want to do Peds
(6) Started my Internal Medicine rotation
(7) Realized I might want to do IM
(8) Cancer f***ing sucks x infinity
(9) Realized I might want to do Heme-Onc
(10) Realized some of my family sucks
(11) Realized some of my family is amazing
(12) My brother is growing up
(13) I’m growing up
(14) I have an amazing boyfriend

In the past eight months, I’ve knit 10 pairs of socks (two of which are knee-highs, and three of which are man-socks), 2 hats, 4 pairs of mittens, and one kick-ass sweater.

The run-down: socks edition.

(1) knees and toes II.  These are the Knitty pattern “Garden Gate.”  For a short while I was almost totally obsessed with this pattern.  And for good reason.  They are seriously impressive.  In fact, I have two pairs of them and I wouldn’t mind knitting myself another pair if the color work weren’t so difficult to memorize.

(2) i heart bows.  I was on a knee-high knitting kick this past winter: it was my first winter in two years and I’ve always loved wearing knee highs (and boots).  This pair I designed myself and am pretty damn proud of them.  I bought the Zauberball in Michigan while I lived there and I knit these socks while I was studying for the USMLE Step I.  I later wore these when I actually wrote the exam.

 

(3) like popping an ativan.  These socks I knit during a particularly rough patch this year.  Stress tends to make me edgy and fidgety and antsy.  At least now I have something to show for it.  This pattern is “Firestarter” by Yarnissima (one of my favorite sock designers), and is almost perfect stress-relief knitting: the foot is just complicated enough to be distracting and the leg is completely mindless knitting.  The yarn (Great Adirondack Soxie in Monet) I bought in Michigan during one of my last LYS trips with a good friend of mine.

(4) that’s why they’re called business socks.  There’s this show called Flight of the Conchords IK and I used to watch when we lived in Dominica and in one of the episodes there’s this song called “Business Time” during which one of the characters refers to his socks as business socks (see video below).  Anyways, these are the first socks I ever knit for IK.  He bought me the yarn (Dream in Color Everlasting Sock in Dive) after I told him that it was one of my favoritest yarns I had ever knit with (it’s the pink color in “i heart bows” — the colorway in that one is Poppy).  Pattern is “Aragorn.”

 

(5) starry.  These are the Knitty pattern “Maeva.”  I won this yarn in a photo competition All for Love of Yarn holds every month.  The inspiration for the colorway was a store front in Ann Arbor, MI.  I wanted to incorporate the inspiration for the colorway into the knitted product.  These socks were knit in a little lull between writing Step I and starting rotations.

(6) to disguise my ugly feets.  The pattern is Summer Sliding by Jeannie Cartmel.  I started these during June of this year, while in Connecticut, and finished them  in June when I was living with my aunt and uncle in Illinois.  While there, I had the habit of walking around barefoot — it was summer, after all, and inside the house, it felt nice to walk barefoot.  My uncle happened to be sitting near me during one of my barefoot excursions and he remarked that I have incredibly flat feet (I don’t — I have pretty high arches) and that my feet are exceptionally ugly (personally, I hate feet, but I’ve definitely seen feet much uglier than mine).  Needless to say, my feelings were a little hurt, but at least I had some beautiful socks on the needles.

(7) bedroom socks.  A while back, I jumped on the self-striping yarn bandwagon and bought myself some Vesper Self-striping Yarn by Knitterly Things.  And then I joined a knit-a-long on Ravelry.  I know, pretty knit-nerd-tastic of me, but what can I say?  I’m pretty knit-nerd-tastic.  I bought this yarn way before I realized that the colors match the colors in the bedroom in Illinois I had while growing up.  Hence, bedroom socks.  The pattern is Knitty’s Skew.

(8) in case you decide that gynecology is your calling.  Father’s Day happened while I was living in Illinois with my aunt and uncle (the one who said I had ugly feet), and I felt a little guilty that I didn’t have something to give him — but what do you give a man who insists (and not in a humble kind of way) that he has everything he already wants?  I decided I was going to knit him a pair of socks to one, show him how awesome knit socks are, and two, slay him with some kindness after his comment about my feet.  So, I went to a local yarn shop near the clinic in which I was learning/working — which shall remain unnamed because it was honestly one of the most unenjoyable/unfriendly/abrasive yarn shops I have ever had the poor luck to visit — and picked up some Madeline Tosh Sock yarn in this lovely, manly, tonal green-grey shade.  Perfect, I thought, for man-socks.  I looked at the label, and to my surprise, the colorway is named “Georgia O’Keefe, ” which, to me, at least, is completely synonymous with “vagina.”  Whatever, I thought.  It’s not like the recipient is going to know I’m knitting him socks in “vagina.”  I picked up a pattern from my ever growing Ravelry queue: KawKawesque, by Yarnissima, and started knitting.  I mentioned to my aunt that I was knitting my uncle a pair of socks and she remarked, “Oh, he has SO many socks.”  But, I didn’t think anything of it.  A few days later, I was knitting on the couch and my uncle came by.  I told him, offhandedly, that I was knitting socks for him.  His words?  “I have enough socks.”  And he didn’t even bother to look.  I was crushed.  Maybe I’m too used to people being impressed with my knitting, but still.  Sad.  I wasn’t going to stop knitting these socks, though.  I mean, they’re pretty awesome.  Plus I was more than half-way in on one sock and I had already knit and frogged that portion numerous times.  And I wasn’t about to go back to that awful yarn shop.  My boyfriend is always grateful for another pair of knit socks or anything knitted, so I figured, he’s love them.  And be proud of them.  At the time, he was in the middle of this OB-Gyn rotation, and well, the colorway name just fit.  So these are for him.

(9) this knit is bananas: B-A-N-A-N-A-S.  Monkey socks.  By Cookie A.  They’re kinda famous in sock knitting circles.

(10) silly boy.  These socks are knit in Vesper Yarns Self-striping yarn in Rawhide.  The toes, cuff, and afterthought heel are knit in Vesper Yarns Semi-solids in Chartreuse.  The bedroom socks made me a Vesper Yarns Self-striping convert and I continuously fiend for more.  Seriously good stuff.  The base is so bouncy and springy and soft and the colors are SO VIBRANT.  Not for the faint of heart.  These socks are a gift to IK on our 2.5 year anniversary.  He’s a silly boy and these are some silly socks.  I was told that mustard yellow is the “it” color for next season,  and I’ve already apologized to IK for knitting the heels/toes/cuff in chartreuse instead of mustard yellow, but maybe next next season, chartreuse will be the “it” color of the season.

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