Saturday, 24 September 2011

The love rug

News of women around my age being diagnosed with breast cancer has been coming my way lately.  Amongst the men in my life, there has recently been a stroke, an aneurysm and a heart attack.  Again, these men have been around my age.  Which isn't very old.  Really.

It's terrible to hear this news.  I wonder how their story will end.  Then I wonder what I can say or do.  It's so difficult to know what's appropriate, but it's also hard to know what I actually want to express.  For someone adept with words, at these moments I find them to be hopelessly inadequate.

Early this year a very close friend of a very close friend of mine told us that she had just received this devastating news.  I know her only a little bit, but I still felt terribly sad to know that she now had this disease to contend with.  I wanted to let her know that I cared, but wasn't sure how to reach out to her.  I knit her a pair of socks and sent them unannounced.  She featured them in a photographic series of "chemo footwear" she has featured on facebook.

Not long after this I received a group email from a woman I didn't know asking for suggestions of how we could support and care for our friend.  Out of this, the idea to make her a love rug was born.  We were invited to contribute a knitted square which would then be made into a blanket.  I'd not long finished my 150 square effort for the fistula hospital in Ethiopia, so one square was easy!  Lilac.  Garter stitch.  With my own "handmade by" label sewn on the back.

Progress reports were received from those who were joining them to make the blanket.  I was delighted to receive news that the blanket had been finished and had been presented to our friend.

I thought this project was a wonderful expression of community.  It can be challenging for everyone and this idea was pitch perfect, I think.  Such love and effort has been poured into this project, there must be healing power in the concentration of love.

Amanda has given me permission to publish this wonderful photo of her and her children in this (enormous) blanket. How could you feel anything but loved?


  1. oh how wonderful!!! I know Amanda through those nutty brisbane boys - this is just brilliant Tanya!!! What a fantastic thing to do. Dan x (ps. saw JC perform on monday night - by god he was funny!)

  2. Glad you love it Danielle! I haven't had the chance to see JC (aka The Lazy Civil Servant) perform yet. Did hear a recording of his final gig in Raw Comedy and it was very funny!