Knit a halo
Thursday July 18th 2013, 11:03 pm
Filed under: Knitting a Gift,Life,LYS

I learned something tonight.

I finally got to go to Purlescence‘s knit night, the second time since May due to germs and travel and other friends’ schedules. I walked  in and felt like, oh, I’m home!

I had heard about the Halos of Hope program to knit chemo caps for cancer patients (finally googled it just now; I recognize the logo, that’s the place); those running it donate all their time so that there is zero overhead involved, only the mailing of the caps. They sell patterns for them to try to meet those mailing expenses themselves as much as they can. Benjamin Levisay had mentioned it on Facebook.

But I’d thought, well that’s nice but why don’t I just knit one and drop it off at the clinic’s hematology department next time I go in and save them the postage? They do actually have a collection table for such and I’ve thought for awhile that I should.

So I asked Nathania. I knew Purlescence had gone in in a big way, with a 24-hour Halos of Hope knitathon last weekend. (I missed it. Richard had a bad 24-hour bug and I sure didn’t want to contribute that to the gathering.) Two hundred and ten hats!

And that’s when I learned that Halos is aimed at those in medically underserved communities and where yarn money is hard to come by; here, there are a lot of knitters and crocheters, there’s a lot of people who are financially quite comfortable and it’s not difficult for the needs to be met: something beautiful, something artistic, something made with love and talent and skill and compassion and a good-deed outlet for one’s leisure time.

I mentioned I had an online friend who has to drive two hours to get to the nearest doctor, and she nodded, Exactly.

And then she told me of a woman here who was housebound and limited in her old age–but she could knit. She had talked to Nathania, wanting to contribute, and told her she could afford to knit maybe one or two a month; Nathania and the others at the shop responded with, Let us help you out with that. And so they gave her a large donation of yarn, and at the knitathon she got a ride over there and was just going to…drop them off in the corner and, y’know, slip back out the door…

No no, come, let everybody see what you did! And so her fifty-four hats got put in the center of the group for everyone to see and the woman got the applause and cheers that she wasn’t looking for but so much deserved.

She had earned her halo.

I remember how hesitant my mother-in-law was to ask me to knit her a chemo cap, and how deeply gratifying it was to be able to say, Of course I will!

And then another and another, let’s see, Mom’s favorite colors, and another and another, I tried to make her a full wardrobe of chemo caps.

Tonight made me stop and envision what it must be like to have–none. Wow. Soft yarn, small purse project, coming up.

6 Comments so far
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And at least one silly hat, just for fun.

Comment by Sherry in Idaho 07.19.13 @ 7:56 am

Beautiful. And three cheers for the ladies at the shop who gave the knitter the support and recognition she so richly deserved.

Comment by Channon 07.19.13 @ 8:52 am

Was it not you who, in effect, said that it is more fun to give than to receive?

Comment by Donald Meyer 07.19.13 @ 8:59 am

when my friend began her last round of chemo, I knit her a soft yellow hat — her approach to the cancer that ultimately won in May of this year was the “when life gives you lemons” one, and many of her friends sent her things that were yellow — she wore the hat quite a bit, and when we went through her things, one of her nieces asked if she could have it — she remembered seeing it worn — I was happy to have her take it

in this case, there are a lot of blessings to go around — the knitter needed that applause!

Comment by bev 07.19.13 @ 9:04 am

Purlescence sounds like a wonderful store, and so glad that they decided to give some love to the Halos of Hope folks!

Comment by Renee 07.19.13 @ 5:40 pm

I once flew across the country with a friend. As we were returning, the airline seats were three across. My friend and I were each knitting something. The person in the third seat was crocheting bandages for lepers. It was a reminder of how lucky we were to be knitting the lovely things we do, and of how we could consider knitting for persons in need. Thanks for the reminder of that moment.

Do you have a favorite style of chemo cap? Beret? Slouch? Like that…

Comment by RobinM 07.21.13 @ 9:00 am

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