This year we journey together to explore our knitting roots and learn more about knitters and designers of many different backgrounds. As part of this project, I’ve created a series of guest posts to introduce you to designers who are women of color. Enjoy this guest post by Anna Hernandez, indie dyer from Skeins in the Stacks in Cordova, Alaska, who is worried about the state of our world.
Donna asked me to write an article on this blog about my yarn business. To write about the struggles of running a small business, in a small remote city in Alaska, where I live with my family. This is a great series about artists who come from many different backgrounds, and she wanted me to write about any struggles I may have encountered. But truthfully, the only thing weighing on my mind is not my business, but the state of our world. And so, I wrote this. Please forgive me, if you wanted to read about yarny goodness, and how I might have given you ideas that could help you with your business, or ideas that might have inspired you to start up a business yourself.
What and how… What do we want for ourselves? What do we want for our families? What do we want to leave behind, when we are no longer on this earth? How do we honor our elders and our ancestors? How do we honor ourselves? How do we honor this time we have been given on this earth? Aren’t these the questions we all ask ourselves? How do we answer them?
I have asked myself questions such as these, over and over in some form since I was a child. Throughout my life the answers have been different, but inside each, love always makes its way in. In this time we are living in, where everywhere we look there is stupidity, anger, and hate, we can become disheartened. When we are bombarded with thousands upon thousands of images of people struggling and suffering, it is hard not to feel overwhelmed with despair. That love that we hold inside ourselves and the good that we want to do in this world suddenly seems unattainable. We are all feeling this way, are we not?
We have to take a step back, and think. Surely our parents’ generation felt these struggles. Our grandparents’ generation, our great-grandparents’ generation, I’m sure they all felt that the world was coming undone. How did they answer these same questions, we ask of ourselves?
We have to believe we can do some good for ourselves, for our families, for those generations that are still to come. I believe that this “good” can be something small. Something that may seem insignificant at the time, can have a huge impact. It can be one small, good thing that we do every day. Smile at someone. Say hello to someone, or better yet ask someone how they are, and really listen to their answer. Can this make a huge difference in our world? Maybe not to the whole world, but maybe it will make a world of difference to that person. What if that person has moved through their day and has had no one to smile at them, no one to say hello to them, or talk to them? That is a sad world, but that may be someone’s world. By being kind, and by giving away some of our love, even in what seems like a small insignificant way, by doing this we have made on impact on this earth.
Let’s honor ourselves, our families, our ancestors, and our time given to us. Be kind to one person every day, help one person every day, and if we are so able, do something we enjoy every day, and then share that thing that we love with someone else.
As a favorite book character of mine once said:
Some believe it is only great power that can hold evil in check, but that is not what I have found. It is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay. Small acts of kindness and love. Why Bilbo Baggins? Perhaps because I am afraid, and he gives me courage. — J.R.R. Tolkien
I am a woman of many backgrounds. I am Native American, Mexican, German, but most importantly I am a human being. A human being who finds it hard to do “good” all the time, but I try to do something good every day. I have a family that I love. I have family members who have come before me, who have really and truly struggled, and who have made unthinkable sacrifices, so that I may be where I am today. I thank them. I work as a mom full time, a librarian part time, and a yarn dyer part time. You can find yarn that I dye based on literature that I love at, www.skeinsinthestacks.etsy.com. You can also follow me on Instagram as, skeinsinthestacks.