It was one of those one in a lifetime moments where I wasn’t myself. I tend to control (hmmm, really, Gregory?) my aggression. I like to think that I’m a hopeful person, a tolerant person, equipped to handle the barbs thrown at me. My usual response? “Oh, well…”
But, with the arm not working right, and my knitting coming to a close, perhaps I’m a bit more pensive inside. Perhaps I’m a little more inclined to be a touch pissy.
I was coming back from Publix. Wait…..I need to throw the visual in here real quick. I carry a grocery cart. I can’t very well carry a ton of groceries in a bag with a bum arm so I’ve acquired for myself a really cool grocery cart. Yeah! So, see me now, in your precious mind, rough jeans, dirty boots, ball cap and unshaven pulling a grocery cart across the street. Yes, I’ll agree I’m not homeless anymore, but I guess I still look homeless. I know that. I’m terrified of spending money. I don’t shop for clothes. I have what I have and most of it, practically all of it is from Kara’s Goodwill outings.
So, there I am, attempting to cross the most dangerous road in America for pedestrians, with my grocery cart. The light signals for me to cross. I take my lead. However, a woman in a massive SUV of some luxury variety decides she is NOT going to wait for me to cross and comes barreling towards me. She screeches to a halt when she realizes she’s about to run me over, but does not excuse herself, doesn’t apologize, but instead screams out of her window, “Goddamn homeless! Everywhere! YOU ARE IN THE WAY!!!!”
I stopped right there in the middle of the street, turned to her quickly with that sudden stare I learned to make when crossed by a cheating lover and defiantly said with bolstering voice I know frightens people when I’m angry, “I’m a world famous knitter, BITCH!”
I then beautifully finished the walk across the road as she squealed on with a weird face towards her next unsuspecting victim. (Really, she drove on with a pinched up face wondering, “World famous what????”)
There was something defiant in that moment that needed to be cataloged. It was not the best day to demean me. It was not the best day to remind me of my past, nor was it the best day to chide me about my appearance. It was, however, the best day for me to forewarn with a severe inclusion that I have earned my unusual ranks in the arena of crafting. I have worked my ass off to the sacrifice of my physical health, I have pushed hard and worked hard, and knit my scrawny fingers to the bone so much that I am therefore afforded the right to say to anyone of the success I have gained that I have value and that value came from knitting. I have done my part, I have conquered stitched up demons and slayed purled dragons. I have knit my way into this world and have a voice in it. SHE may not know it, but I NEEDED to be reminded of it. So, some interesting part of me that never wanted to scream, screamed back and it felt so good.
It was the testament to myself that I needed. So, I’m a little down, a little out, a little damaged. Screw it. Yeah, it sucks, but dang it. I earned those battle scars. And no one (not even in a frail moment of passing) was going to rob me of that.
Though I have to give up knitting, I stilled earned my little place in the world of yarn. I wasn’t going to be run over. I was going to stand defiantly and remind someone of my worth. No bare notice: I wasn’t going to demand it of them, I was going to REMIND myself of it.
It felt good to say it out loud.
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