In all the time that Alice has been part of our lives, I’ve been knitting for her and around her. I can’t imagine there’s ever been a time when she saw me and I didn’t have knitting needles in my hand even for a few minutes.
And yet she’s never mentioned it. I have struggled to think of a time when she pointed out what I was doing or showed an interest but it’s never happened until recently. Last week when she was here she found a crochet hook in the lounge room and asked what it was. I got some yarn and made a little chain. She watched. She took the hook in her own little hand and waved it around the yarn, got bored and walked away.
It was a tiny moment, short lived, but enough to make me wonder if maybe at last she’d noticed I’m always doing this thing with stuff in my hands.
I wouldn’t say I’m desperate to pass on the love of making things to her – if she never knits or crochets or sews it’s ok. But it’s struck me that in all the time it’s been going on right in front of her, it jus doesn’t register and, you know, being three she asks about everything. Everything. All the time. But not this. It makes me pause to think.
Then recognition came in the strangest and loveliest way. There’s a book she loves. It’s called The Gruffalo. Do you know it? A lovely book about a little mouse and his encounter with a beast in the deep, dark woods. It’s a clever story. She adores it. Recently we saw the little movie and the movie of the sequel and we were all delighted.
I found a stuffed toy of the Gruffalo and knew I had to buy him for Alice. Here he is.
He’s a cute, cuddly monster. Here’s how Alice looked when she met him.
To say she was happy is an understatement. Instant love. Very gratifying.
But for me, the best bit was yet to come. A little while later she said, and I’m still not sure if it was a question or a statement, ‘Bells made it!’
Really? She thought I made the Gruffalo? What a lovely, inflated view of my skills she has. Or as RoseRed said, Alice can’t distinguished between bought things and things I’ve made.
Either way (and who knows all the time what goes on in the strange little minds of toddlers anyway!) what this proved to me is that after all the cardigans, all the dresses, all the cakes – every little hand made thing I’ve given to Alice in her three short years, the fact of what I do has at some point sunk in.
Alice knows I make things and that I make things for her.
It’s the loveliest kind of acknowledgement. I’m happy now that she’s never asked what I’m doing when I sit with her and knit. She doesn’t have to ask. She just knows.