Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Thousand Kisses Socks

I am very excited to be a part of the Winter 2012 issue of Petite Purls magazine! My Thousand Kisses socks are included in this issue, along with many other great patterns, all of which are available at the Petite Purls website for free!

These socks were inspired by the pair that I made my older child for his first day of school. Because I had been a stay-at-home mom for his entire life, he had never gone to daycare or had any experience with long, regular separations from home and family, so the transition to full-day, every-other-day kindergarten was wrapped in some anxiety for both of us.

In the weeks leading up to The Big Day, I made a special pair of socks for my son. Surrounding the top of the socks was a band of traditional Fair Isle OXO motifs, but I explained to him that they were hugs and kisses. When he started to tear up in the back of his kindergarten classroom as I tried to make my way to the door, I put some extra hugs and kisses into my hand and patted them into his socks. After that, he was (mostly) ok.

The sock pattern on the Petite Purls website is the expanded and updated version of that original pair, which were long ago worn through and outgrown. I was even fortunate enough to be able to make a second pair for my younger child, and plan on making her another pair for when she starts Kindergarten in 573 more days...but who's counting?

The name of these socks was inspired by the thousands of stitches (kisses) in each
sock, as well as by the Leonard Cohen song called "A Thousand Kisses Deep."Like most Leonard Cohen songs, I love it to bits, but get the feeling that I'm missing a layer or six of the meaning that he's written into the lyrics. My take on it is summed up at the end of the second verse:

And maybe I had miles to drive,
And promises to keep:
You ditch it all to stay alive
A thousand kisses deep

This, to me, speaks to the bittersweet feeling that many parents, especially stay-a-home parents, have that the sacrifices involved in child raising have diverted them from the path they imagined for themselves, but are surprised to find themselves a thousand kisses deeply in love with their children and with life as a parent. It may be a slightly cynical view of parenting, but that's how I was feeling at that period in time.

How did you feel when your children started school, or do you remember how you felt on your own first day of kindergarten?

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