What do you do with sad yarn?

Posted in Uncategorized by tchemgrrl on May 22, 2012

This may be the first-ever fiber-related post that includes a trigger warning. This post talks about an old pregnancy loss, with no physical details. If you’re not ready for that, skip it, and in skipping it have my wishes for your healing.

It’s just string, after all. But I know lots of people who buy a little skein of something when traveling, to bring that feeling of a foreign place with them for the few extra hours it will take to knit that pair of socks. And I know of people who have gone through a cycle of starting a project, getting dissatisfied, and ripping it out several times until the yarn itself feels like it has some bad mojo. Or they have a little ball left over from a sentimental project, nominally kept around “for repairs” but really as a reminder of their beloved out in the world, kept warm.

And sometimes yarn gets imbued with sadness.

I had some yarn that I bought the first time I was pregnant, with what could have become a spring baby, born about 6 months before my Doodle ultimately was.


It’s Hempathy, a nice springy yarn in nice springy colors. Since it had been very early in the pregnancy, I very consciously Did Not Buy It For The Baby, but nevertheless I apparently DID buy it for that particular baby, because I’ve been burying it in the bottommost layer of the stash without looking at it ever since I lost that first pregnancy. There was other yarn with similar plans that I was happy to knit, and other things bought that first time around that I was happy to give away or dispose of. Something in this yarn, I just couldn’t. I could barely look at it. It held all that hope and sadness and fear and disappointment.

So what do you do with sad yarn?

I’m pretty well at peace with everything that happened with that lost pregnancy–occasionally slightly wistful that my 18 month old is not turning 2 right now, but with full awareness that he’d be someone different if he was that other guy, and so would I. I also know that I can’t imagine him being anyone but the amazing guy he is. The yarn brings me back to that place, but I don’t live there anymore, and I don’t WANT to live there either.

I was ready to let that sadness go. To knit with it would have been too much wallowing, to give it as a gift would have seemed like an offense. It’s perfectly nice yarn that deserves a good home, a fresh start, a chance to make someone happy. It’s not its fault that I can only look at it through a filter of sadness.

I destashed it for a good price. It had been up on Rav for a while, and I just noticed that I got the original inquiry on the two year anniversary of that original due date, which somehow feels right. I put it in the mail today.

It was a very light package.

And now there is a little hole in my stash that can be filled with good memories, or sentimental leftovers. I can dream of possibilities rather than fear them.


4 Responses

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  1. Mary said, on May 23, 2012 at 5:40 am


  2. Without a Net « Fiberlog said, on August 21, 2012 at 1:08 pm

    […] this is a year for doing things I don’t normally do, craft-wise. I knit two of one pattern, I shed some old unpleasant possessions, I did a ridiculous amount of knitting and spinning for various games this […]

  3. agujasblog said, on August 21, 2012 at 8:26 pm

    Touching post. I miscarried my first pregnancy and thankfully quickly became pregnant again and had a wonderful son. I reconciled that everything was as it was meant to be but I understand about the “what ifs” of that other child.

  4. tchemgrrl said, on August 22, 2012 at 8:07 am

    That is almost exactly my own experience, right down to the son. : )

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