So here’s the lesson that I’ve learned from Faina and from my practice. The fibers need to be well prepared. Even if you comb them in advance, when you go to use them you should pull them through the comb again. Good prep is key to fine spinning. ( I knew that from the wheel and other spindles but it’s always good to hear it again.)
For longer fibers
it’s best to spin from the fold. You also can’t hold the fibers too tight. As soon as you tighten your grip you get a thicker yarn. You have to trust your light touch and your preparation.
If you feel like you need a couple more fibers or a few less fibers a light roll of the thumb or a tiny change in your hand angle makes a great difference and will change the course of the thread back to where you want it.
I’ve been feeling a little philosophical lately and here is my comparison of spindle spinning to life.
Raising kids, like spinning, takes some finesse. Preparation is key. Preparation of yourself by having a sense of humor, understanding the differences between things of eternal significance and the stuff that really doesn’t matter, finding things that help you relax when things seem to be getting too much.
Good preparation of your kids is also key. By that I mean preparation for life. You teach them values. You teach them how to be kind. You teach them about all of the things which are important for them to be happy and healthy in this life and also all of the things of eternal significance – see above.
In spinning a light touch is necessary. You get a better and faster spin of the spindle if you are just touching the very tip and not grabbing way down on the shaft.
You also don’t want to be squeezing the life out of the fibers because they never behave the way you’d like.
If you do find yourself squeezing
too tightly and you get an unruly
area you can always stop and go back. Remove some of the twist and stretch the fibers past each other. If you do it right, you can’t even see the spot where the mistake happened.
In raising kids a light touch is also necessary. When they are young you want to take time with them so that they understand that the rules are only there for their safety. You want to stay calm when the milk spills but be prepared to be a little rough if they are headed for the road into oncoming traffic.
When they are older you need an even lighter touch. They are breaking away. My instinct is always to tighten my grip but then the unruliness sets in. It’s difficult to do. When too many fibers seem to be sliding past my fingers I instinctively grasp them more tightly.
When my older children seem to be out of my control, my instinct is to try to control them more and things always get worse. But – and here’s the happy part – you can always stop and back up. Do a little back twisting and soon the little glitch is gone and not remembered.
The life of a mother of adult children can be very scary. They are beyond your control. Sometimes they haven’t gotten to the point of seeking your counsel. You can just sit back and watch and feel helpless until they find their own way. There is always the hope that they’ll need you again and trust that your guidance is again for their own safety, just like when they were little. And, looking back on my life, I can see the transition in myself from little miss independence to asking again for my mother’s guidance and truly knowing that she could help.
I look forward to this with my own girls.
My dad recently told me that it will get easier when they are 35. 14 years to go.