Those who craft with yarn know that it can be a time consuming task. Items only seem to magically appear from the repetitive gestures of a crochet hook. Many pieces are the result of hours, if not months, of continuous effort.
Megan Duncan’s “Crafting Through Grief” resonated with me as both a knitter and someone who has experienced loss. Her path to healing is broken into brief, distinct segments that seem to describe moments, but are the foundation of a greater journey. “Single, Double, Seed” is the first step, where those left behind are trying to make sense of what happened. This is shown in the description of the video calls with her sister, as well as the way Duncan describes the process: “single crochet followed by rows of double crochet then seed stitch.” This shows the author trying to find sense in the familiar and the expected, or perhaps trying to make sense. With a pattern, there is a predictable outcome. Single, double, and seed is the early phase of grief where one tries to make the inexplicable fit into a neat package.
“A Misspelled Name” also addresses more than one point. Her husband’s understanding is laudable; he sees to the heart of the issue – that it is Duncan “yelling out her grief” – when others would have told her she’s unreasonable, it’s just one letter, or the most grievous and offensive opinion: that the deceased is gone and won’t be upset by it. This section also shows the rawness of loss: an anger that is glossed over in dramatizations in favor of excessive tears that not everyone cries.
Duncan ends her piece on an uplifting and realistic note, with the blanket completed in a year, and her ability to feel warmth, both literally and figuratively, once more.
My only suggestions are to reconsider two of the headings. “Grief is a Process” and “Crochet: Therapist Approved” feel muted compared to the emotional impact of the rest of the piece.