Yesterday I selected buttons for a cardigan I had just finished knitting. I sewed them on painstakingly, as one does if one has hours wrapped up in an item, and immediately put it on. The warmth of the heavy fabric enveloped me and I thought of the happy moment when I realized that there were enough skeins of this sale yarn to knit a sweater. I remembered the car trip this project took, the classes I taught where this sweater made a progress appearance, the evenings watching dark European detective shows.
Today, the news was announced that our local yarn shop is closing its doors. While I was prepared for the work to sell off inventory, I was not prepared for the emotions that accompanied the knitters as they bade farewell and bought reminders of this lovely shop. They were mourning. It is beyond sad when a business ends its run. But I watched the owner smile as she talked with customers and helped them plan projects for the next few months, and I saw grace in action.
It is not something we witness so often, people operating with grace. Or perhaps we just don't see it because we forget to look for it. It happens every day though, small acts of kindness, generous gestures, whether it is a simple smile for a stranger or a door held open, help with a heavy load or a nod of acknowledgment.
Endings are so difficult. There is so much to do to wrap up a chapter in a life. The loose ends must be gathered and organized and capped off. And while you are finishing a chapter, you are thinking of the next one - what happens next? What do I do now? Some endings are bigger than others - while this lovely job is a short chapter in my life, it comprises several of the shop owner's. And while I am sad that this time ends somewhat abruptly, this heavenly job when I talked yarn and knitting and GOT PAID, I am grateful for the lessons I walk away with, that my return to the working world was filled with wonderful people and new friends.
I wish all the best to Hickory and know that she has made a good decision for her family's well-being, and I'm confident that whatever she embarks on in the future will be filled with laughter and thoughtfulness and grace.