Whose Idea Was It Anyway?

Do you ever look at a custom or a common practice and just ask why? I’ve been doing that a lot lately. I’ve been thinking about why I make the choices I do and why the things I’ve done may or may not be a good idea. I’ve been wondering whose idea it was and why I let whatever it is influence my choices.

The Husband and I were talking about what we should plant in the yard in the spring. We each listed off 5 or 6 things we’d like for fruit and vegetables: tomatoes, cucumbers, watermelon, squash, peas, green beans, garlic, eggplant, spinach, lettuce and peanuts. After realizing how much space these plants would take The Husband said we’d have to scale back our plans. I asked why? If we’d rather grow watermelon and squash instead of grass we can. It’s something he hadn’t considered. Will we till under all the grass? Probably not but it does make me wonder why the standard of neighborhood beauty is heavily manicured green grass and not an abundant vegetable garden.

Before The Husband and I got married we hashed out a lot of issues we’d face in married life. We were required to take a class in order to get married in the church so it wasn’t an organic conversation but it did open our eyes to the different views we had. It was an opportunity to point out non negotiables and to negotiate issues we were flexible on. But whose ideas were placed in that class? Were our choices really our own or were we influenced? Overall it’s worked pretty well for us and not all of our choices were mainstream. But I wonder what would be different if we had reached our decisions without a guided conversation.

Back when I first discovered the online knitting community, before Ravelry was even a vague thought, I was so impressed. My first discovery was blogs. My second discovery was the KnitList. I was lured in by the gorgeous yarn and beautiful projects. It amazed me at the time to see so many people who loved the same craft as me. Looking back from where I sit now I don’t view that all the same way as I did. As much as I loved seeing all the beautiful projects in gorgeous yarn perfectly photographed on carefully curated blogs, it made me feel bad about my knitting and my less than perfect life. I’m a real person with plenty of faults. I had to make the conscious effort to be honest on my blog. I shared the good, bad and failed. I still do.

Do you ever wonder the why of what you choose to do and worry about those that influence those choices? I see so many people both online and in real life who feel disappointed in themselves. They measure themselves harshly. They feel like they aren‘t meeting some standard. But I ask who set that standard and why should you be meeting it?

About nothingbutknit2

I'm a wife, mother and knitter. Watch out for my pointy sticks.
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22 Responses to Whose Idea Was It Anyway?

  1. Alissa Head says:

    Right now I am going through something similar, but a little different. I am asking myself what brings me joy, and what no longer does. This is so I can let go of the things that are no longer important to me. My blog still brings me joy, even though I don’t have as much time to blog as I once did. The community on WordPress still brings me joy. Knitting still brings me joy. But there are a number of things I will be letting go of. And there are some I’m still trying to decide on. I hope you will continue to blog as you feel like it. I think the lawn thing was people trying to appear like nobility, with the castles and manor houses and lawn so they could see the enemy armies coming. So people in the suburbs in the 50’s maybe decided that made them look and feel more wealthy? I may have made that up, though, so you’d better check me on it. 🙂 I think a grass lawn is a waste, unless you a playing croquet on a regular basis. Why not grow food? Or even flowers? I think you should till it under and grow all the veggies you want!

    Liked by 5 people

  2. Meg Hanson says:

    I was just thinking the other day about making an effort not to compare myself with my mom, or anyone else. I am me! We each have unique qualities and abilities.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. IWhen I was a kid we lived in an up and coming area that is now one of the most wealthy zip codes in the US. I didn’t fit in. I was the chubby kid. So, that was when I learned that mean people were not to be included in my life. So, they weren’t. Funny how with social media many of them have friended me as if we were old friends going way back. Hilarious, eh?
    I learned to knit at the age of 8 and created my own designs from the start. Then, after the first day of school in 9th grade I started really pumping out the sweaters and dug out my grandma’s 1929 Singer. No longer would I step on the bus in the morning and be wearing the same thing as four or five other girls. Yup. It happened one morning.
    Over the years people have tried to convince me of what is cool, what is hot, what I should be doing, etc. My first husband called me names because I wouldn’t participate in illegal substances with him and his friends. Too bad. There are many reasons he’s the ex. He should have never been a husband if I would have stuck with my inner feelings that he was wrong for me. He talked a good game. Never again have I fallen for the talk of a good game or idea without listening to my inner voice.
    My choice to be myself led me to a BA in Fashion Design.
    I also was a member of the KnitList and there is another online group that survived that one. We’re doing great and having fun. No one is critical and we can wander off topic in posts as long as we include mostly knitting. I was one who was asked to leave the KnitList because I always insisted there was more to each of us than what was on our needles.

    Liked by 4 people

    • I’m so pleased to hear you found your inner voice:) There is so much value in doing what we know is right for us. Don’t be hard on yourself about your ex. You learned many lessons from that experience and they’ve made you who you are.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. djdfr says:

    We must question what we do and why if we want this world to change for the better. Individuality is one of the divine gifts that makes us human. We are each unique.
    I could not live in one of those subdivisions where they measure the grass and cut it if you don’t. I could not live where one is not permitted to hang out laundry or have compost. Our garden is not picture perfect but we enjoy it and it gives a bit of independence from the system.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Cinna Knits says:

    Questioning WHY and HOW we believe what we believe is a fun exercise! What is beauty?What makes something aesthetically pleasing? Why do if feel the need to monoculture my yard?
    Reconsidering what is possible is the root of creativity.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. ReginaMary says:

    I do give thought to those who influence me. At our ripe age, my husband and I went through the marriage program, but it was our choice to be married in the church because we believe in the tenets of our faith; I am happy to have God influence me. We were probably the oldest couple in the program. When it came to discussing our openness to having children, we both answered YES and when we shared the number of children, we both independently wrote ’10’! hahaha! A match made in heaven.
    Having a strong Italian heritage, my grandfather couldn’t understand why people planted weeds instead of tomatoes. His town in Italy was very rocky and gardens were not easy to eke out.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Sometimes I look back and realize that I reacted to things in the moment, and that I was sometimes set up. It doesn’t happen so often anymore but when I was young and learning the game my family excels at playing, I was influenced at times.
    Also, you were on Knitlist? I got kicked off that! It had something to do with my sarcastic comment to the girl who wanted to knit a sweater in black but the pattern showed it in red and what should she do? And then there was the “Is it okay to bring my knitting to a cocktail party I really don’t want to attend?” Or maybe the “I’ve been clearing off UFO’s and after three days, I found the sofa!” post – my responses were not appreciated.
    Oh, but those were the good old days!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I was very quiet on the KnitList. They took no shit:)
      I am well versed in reading a room, actual or virtual. I often wander off having said nothing but it would frustrate me more than help.

      Liked by 1 person

      • i just found it amusing to answer with common sense – like “I dunno, substitute red yarn, maybe?” I didn’t mind being booted, when people were cheering on those who were hiding yarn under ceiling tiles so their mates wouldn’t know how much they had, or telling each other it was more important to buy yarn than pay bills, it was time to go. For awhile I was on Knitflame but that became uglier than I wanted to be.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I never understood the hiding of yarn purchases from a spouse. Did the spouse hide whatever they buy in excess? Seems like a bad way to run a partnership.
        I remember going to my late favorite yarn shop and asking about the yarn a sweater was knit in. It was a lovely dark dusty blue and I wanted it for a different pattern. The clerk who had a wicked sense of humor said they were out. Whatever color the samples are knit in goes first, unless it’s lime green then no one even buys the pattern.

        Liked by 3 people

      • Lime green is good for fruit hats and that’s about all. I never understood hiding anything from your spouse- that’s a betrayal of trust to me. It’s a form of lying and I hate a liar

        Liked by 2 people

  8. kathyreeves says:

    By all means, plow up the back yard! That’s what we did, and we have never regretted it! We did leave a small bit of grass for Max, that takes about four swipes to mow.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. YarnyDragonfly says:

    Don’t plow up your yard, just use your yard space for more containers! Although container gardens do require more watering. But less weeding and easier to keep critters out! Good luck whatever you decide!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. YarnyDragonfly says:

    P.S. I am seeing more and more yards in the area with container gardens in the front yard or the whole front yard is a garden with flowers and veggies. Nice to see!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. For the most part, curated grass lawns are an incredible waste of resources. Of course, I was raised by parents who kept most of the cleared land in meadow and garden, with the meadow mowed once a year (more often during the decade it included a baseball diamond!), and the only real lawn was a couple of small patches for sitting out in lawn chairs, the trampoline, and the picnic table.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Emma says:

    This is great food for thought, it’s so hard to get lost in the picture perfect lives/projects of strangers on blogs and Instagram and lose track of why we do it in the first place. It’s great for inspiration but can also be so overwhelming.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I agree it’s great for inspiration and ideas. The part that I realized way back when is that it was setting up unrealistic expectations and I didn’t like feeling like I was always falling short of some false standard.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. It is always a great idea to question why to do something or why not! I agree with you about social media. It can be a wonderful way to connect, or it can be a route for people to feel badly about themselves.

    Liked by 1 person

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