Thanksgiving is a reflective holiday for me even in a good year, and doubly so as we’re celebrating our first holiday without my father. So like always, I’m knitting. And thinking.
I’m so glad you like Morning Coffee, and I’ve been knitting like a fiend, lining up a bunch more:
But today, I want to take a few minutes and reflect. I’m in a small island of stillness, right now: The last 6 months are over, the next 6 months likely won’t get crazy for a few weeks yet, even if we’re supremely lucky. 2013 has been intensely surreal, as years go:
- In March, I was looking ahead to the book release, and wondering if there was any way at all to eventually be able to pursue my passions full-time. Jackie and I first started talking about what that might look like. I thought perhaps, in a year or two, it might work.
- In April, Knit to Flatterwas released. Nearly 3 years after we’d started the project, Jonathan and I finished the rough implementation of the first CustomFit Elf and I started guesstimating mid-fall as a possible release date for the site.
- By June, I created a rough set of wireframes to show around at the TNNA summer show. Everyone we showed was enthusiastic, and on the plane ride home Jackie and I talked seriously both about what it would take to get CustomFit live, and whether I might be able to pursue this full-time around January of 2014. I think we both knew, at that point, that managing the rest of the CustomFit release was unlikely to play well with my other career.
- In July, my father passed away, and like many tragic events it was somewhat crystallizing for me. What am I here for, if not to pursue the things I love? We stepped up our planning and got a temporary team (and the resources!) in place that would carry us through the site’s launch.
- August and September were this intensely wonderful mad rush. I left my day job. We were able to get a good-sized team of people working on the launch, if not full-time then at least a little every day. The sweaters produced by our amazing beta testers were wonderful. We identified problems, and fixed them, and generally hurled ourselves full-speed to launch.
- Just six weeks ago, CustomFit went live to everyone. The amazing programmers behind-the-scenes melted away a bit (as expected) to their own day jobs and other projects. We’re now a much smaller, very part-time crew that (a) we can afford and (b) can take care of the few bugs and issues inevitable in any software project of this size.
I packed my fall schedule to the brim with classes, trips, CustomFit LYS trainings, and such. It’s been a whirlwind, and fun, and very unlike my previous job. My whole life looks so different than it did 6 months ago. (Both in the awesome way, and in the terrifying way. We’re far from out of the woods, yet.)
The next 6 months promise to be just as strange.
A quiet, industrious time, as I knit like the wind for the next book, and keep up pattern releases and preparation for the new year and a return to teaching.
Early next year (with luck), a business that’s strong enough to hire a programmer, so that we can go beyond (bare-knuckled) maintenance and create new CustomFit elves, so that everyone’s sweaters are as fantastic as possible. Shows (I’ll be at Vogue Knitting Live NYC and Seattle, and STITCHES West and South), travel, new features on the site, finishing the book, and sweaters, sweaters, sweaters. On the personal crafting front, I have high hopes for sewing and crochet.
I don’t have any idea where I’ll be in 6 months, really. Not just because nobody never truly knows where they’ll be, but also because so much of where I’m going depends on others. I can imagine all kinds of exciting things, and fervently hope that our fledgling little enterprise grows strong enough to allow me to throw myself at them with open arms.
I do know that despite the hardship and the fear and the sadness the last 6 months have held, they’ve also held intense joy, and purpose, and a greater sense of rightness with my world than I’ve ever had before. I’m thankful for that, in the here and now.
And whatever the outcome, I’ll keep on knitting.
If you’re in the US, Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. And I wish all of you some quiet happiness with your needles, the chance to pause with your thoughts, before rushing onward into the season.