The Weaving Community: Lessons from Tragedy

“He loved getting his hands dirty.” Of the many phrases I heard this week from friends and family members remembering the victims of the recent tragedy in Las Vegas, this one stuck in my head. In fact, it plays over and over in my head while I’m weaving, knitting, driving, getting ready for work.

“He loved getting his hands dirty.” It could be a eulogy. One man described how his deceased friend would stop whenever he saw people broken down on the side of the road, because he loved helping anyone with a problem. The story made me cry. I wish I had known him.

“He loved getting his hands dirty.” Such a contrast from another common phrase, “She wouldn’t break a nail.” Which of the two am I? “I want to be remembered as someone who got her hands dirty, but I know sometimes I’m the one who wouldn’t break a nail.

I’m new to my job as editor of Handwoven and know very well that I wouldn’t be here if a lot of people hadn’t helped me along the way. Many of the same people continue to help me, as do the people I work with, and the readers and contributors of Handwoven. If there is ever anything good that comes from dealing with tragedy, it must be that it serves as a reminder. Life can be fleeting and it can end without warning. Others will remember how we helped them, or how they helped us. I hope I’ve said thank you before when you’ve helped me. I hope I remember to say it again and again.

In our smallish community of fellow weavers, we have many opportunities to help each other solve problems. Interweave can supply you with all the books, magazines, and videos in the world, but it’s that personal connection to others that really makes us a community. The craft’s survival depends on sharing and the exchange of knowledge, and sometimes that even includes helping each other deal with tragedy. Please join me in the dirty hands community.

Thank you and weave well,

Featured Image: Offering support. Author: M.VENTER-YAPR. Getty Images

Handwoven has been part of the weaving community for almost 40 years. Our hearts go out to all who are dealing with tragedy.

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