I’m Here…

Painting bricks

I’ve been slowly working on a test knit for Stephen West’s Painting Bricks Sweater, it matches the Painting Bricks Shawl I knit a while back at the beginning of quarantine. But I won’t lie, I’m angry and I’m exhausted. The emails, the comments, the direct messages and then the news. So I’ve been using this rainbow to try to soothe what aches but I just don’t feel like I’ll ever go back to who I was before all of this started. For a moment I started to think I should just stop writing and posting on social media because it’s a lot, but for every negative message I get, I get someone else saying “I’ve felt the same way,” or “someone did that to me,” or “this happened here too.” So I keep using my platform to maybe teach someone something they didn’t know (yesterday, my husband, a NYer found out from me that Central Park was built on land originally owned by a freed slave community) or change a mind or even make someone think outside of themselves even if for just a moment. But this is my space and although it may change a bit, this is still all me. I’ll be back soon.

60 Replies to “I’m Here…”

  1. I’m so sorry that you have been getting negative comments for speaking out bravely. The world can learn and change and your followers are pulling for you. I know it’s like the abusive partner saying “this time it will be different”, but i really think that a change is coming. Hang in there. Your supporters really care about you.

  2. Do what you need to do for you, but know that your supporters will be here for you, and listen to whatever you wish to say/share.

    The sweater is lovely…I hope the colors do bring you some joy in the darkness.

  3. Please keep posting. I look forward to reading your posts and seeing your knitting.

    1. As a 61 year old white woman I know I will never really know what it is like to be you. You have supporters and listeners here. It is hard to ignore the hate… It is hard to keep it from overpowering you, me, all of us. Retreat when you need to. But I hope the messages here show you that you are heard, you are seen, you are loved.

      1. I agree with Nicole’s words, and the other messages of support and understanding. May we all learn from this heartache. Blessings and peace to you and your husband, Dana.

  4. I know it’s hard, but don’t let the haters kill your joy. You are important to a lot of people in this community.

  5. Hi, ABSOLUTELY I support and AGREE with you. I love that you keep posting. With all the news stories and incidents I had anger building up inside like a volcano. Trying to keep it controlled and not lash out indirectly at others has been difficult. Worrying about family and friends has been a growing stress that will never go away. That is pretty interesting to learn about Central park. I had no idea about that either. I love Central park. It was my favorite place in NYC when I lived there. Looking forward to seeing the test knit sweater. Hugs to you and Jellybean.

  6. I’m tired, depressed, finding it hard to knit and struggling with what to do. I cannot begin to understand the anger and rage that the Black community feels. I can send love, I am doing what I can with money, my actions and my voice. This is hundreds of years overdue, but I have to believe that real change is coming.

  7. There will always be haters. Please try to ignore them because they do not mean anything. What they WANT is for you to stop posting and talking about things that change. If you stop then they win. They are NOT worth that. I love your lovely blog and seeing al of your lovely knits. Thank you so much for bringing joy and happiness to this world. Please don’t stop posting.

  8. Please stay you! I know things aren’t always fair but things will change. Maybe one person at a time, but there will be change!

  9. Your sweater is beautiful—it’s joy with you in it will help improve our crazy world.

    Sending you hugs and much love, Dana!

  10. Love you and keep teaching, knitting when you can.

    1. Negative comments. Please know that there are lots of us out here, who are here for you and are supporting the black community, with everything we have. I can only imagine how this all makes you feel. Know that those of us who love your posts and value what you write on this blog, will be here, when you are ready to post, again. ❤

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    Wow, I didn’t know about the history of Central Park. All are ab

  12. Thank you for checking in. I am appreciating all that you are posting on Instagram

  13. Dana, we need you, we need your voice, your authentic YOU, however you choose to speak to us, whatever you choose to tell us. You have always spoken from your heart. I feel as if I sit at your feet, waiting for your wisdom, as much now as when I did before, to learn from your knitting wisdom and now to hear what you need to say. Sending love and prayers for peace in your heart and change in the world.

  14. Dana, I love and welcome everything you have to say. Do whatever you need, take as much time as you need, to renew your strength. Believe me, there are many, many of us who are angry at this society’s enduring wrongs and appreciate your intelligent posts on *every* subject.

  15. Dana, I hope none of us will go back to who we were before. Change is overdue on many fronts. Keep taking care of yourself but know how much your voice is appreciated by so many. Thank you.

  16. I am a white Canadian. Your honesty is appreciated and valued. I want to hear what you have to share. Thank you.

  17. Please take your time and take care of yourself. Those negative comments are the biggest indicators that change is overdue. I miss your posts and your beautiful smile and will be here when you’re ready.

  18. You do us all a tremendous favor for showing up here. I know that even if you were to stop posting on social media, you would continue to be a force for change and good. Women of color on the internet get hit the hardest and it takes a toll. Thanks for the link to the Seneca Village info. I’d forgotten about that. I recall (I’m an ex-NYer too) the news about the archeological finds, but nothing after that.

  19. I am delighted to read your follow-up note…that you will continue writing.
    Others have said so much better than I can possibly write.
    I can only add how fortunate I was to be an 8 year old pale European when moved to Denmark at the age of 8…accused of being a Soviet spy!
    People, even children, can be mean.
    Keep writing!
    Sending hugs and well wishes to you, your husband and adorable pup!

  20. Hi. It will be completely understandable if you decide you simply need to stop posting, temporarily or permanently. I, and I believe many who follow you, will support you if this is what you decide is best for you. However, please know how much your posts have meant to me, how much I have learned from you, and how fond I have become of you, Jellybean and your husband. But I know that that is not enough. I know that my individual support for you and your family is not enough. I know how much more work I personally need to do to directly challenge racism and to actively stand against the bigotry and hatred of so many white people. Please know that I am committed to fully engaging in this work for the long-haul. In the meantime, I hope that you can take a smidge of comfort from the support you get from the knitting community to whom you have given so much.

  21. Dana, I add my request that you keep writing…when and how you feel like it. I look forward to your blog and posts and have learned from you. I have black members in our family and we have had many conversations, but I appreciate your voice and comments which give me another view of what black people endure in this country.
    Thank you

  22. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings about racial injustice. I’m sorry to hear that you’ve been receiving negative comments. I hardly ever post a comment but wanted you to know that I love reading your blog and seeing your colorful projects, your adorable dog, and your beautiful smile. I hope you continue writing.

  23. I read your blog because you’re a knitter, and because you’re smart. And often full of energy and joy. We readers owe you big time. So you put out there what you feel like putting out there–and we’ll read it and be grateful.

  24. I love all of your posts. Thank you for whatever you want to share, whenever.

  25. Hi Dana. I see you; I am here to listen. You do what you need; the haters may hate, but I think you’re amazing and so important.

  26. Hi! I have missed you amd your beautiful smile and charming pup. I am really sorry that this blog, and frankly so much of life, is fraught and full of dread for you. It should not be this way. I will do everything I can to make this wormd safer for you and all people of color. I hoping for a big change from all that is happening and I hope to be part of that.

    Knit on knowing youvare missed.


  27. Hugs to you. I feel like I need to go back and read all of your posts, but I wanted to say that your feelings are authentic, true, and please do what you have to do to get through this. I know from my own history that one defining moment can trigger all of the grief and rage that was suppressed during years of outrageous events that I was powerless to control; how much more is this time for so many people. I am trying, really trying, to pay attention and to be a better person. Thank you for helping educate me. Also, you are a kick ass knitter!!

  28. Aargh!!! you are getting negative comments???? Now I am REALLY mad. AARGH! Sorry. I am still thinking of you. And you should just do want you want to and need to do. Should have done this before but my Dem group is trying to find out the details of our local policing, I mean in our municipality. Yes, obviously we should have asked these questions before but one foot in front of the other. And as I have said before I really enjoyed your Webs talk last year and don’t let people steal your joy from creating.

  29. Thank you for being your best honest self with us. The news can be and feel overwhelmingly sad. Take care of you💕

  30. Dear Dana, oh, you sound so, so weary. And no wonder. Love and solidarity to you. Thank you for all that you do and say. Rest up, take care and yes, maybe take some time. We’ll be here, always happy to hear from you.

  31. And we will continue to be here, Dana, no matter what. I am listening, learning, praying, and yes – knitting. Thank you for being here, yours is a voice I believe needs to be heard and I for one will be listening. Please take care.

  32. It makes me sad that you’re angry and sad about the events of the past few months. I am angry too, and like you and others of us with heart and soul wonder if I will ever go back to who I was before all of this started. The federal response to the pandemic, the blatant white privilege racism by “Karens” and “Kens”, and the awfulness of the past 3 weeks with George Floyd and Rayshard Brooks – I’m sick with disgust.

    I’m a vulnerable elder, so I don’t get out much — I’m spending part of my daytime listening to Music Choice on Spectrum (SoundScapes) and starting new crochet and knit projects, or frogging the ones that don’t float my boat. I’m trying to stay positive, and sometimes that just requires tuning out.

    Peace, Dana, take care.

  33. You deserve to take care of yourself. Please don’t feel pressure from us to post. Take all the time you need. Or maybe this will be a private turning point and you will start a new phase in your life that doesn’t include Instagram, and that’s okay. Thank you for bringing joy into my life and I hope that the places where you find joy are still there for you.

  34. Of course I wish I could take all the pain away. You are such a bright light in this world. Take care of yourself and know that there are so many people who support and care about you. We have never met, but I am lucky to know you. ❤️❤️

  35. Hi Dana, I am so sorry to hear that you got negative messages. I wish I could say I’m surprised but I’m not. But I truly hope that the positive ones outnumber them by far. I resisted writing before because I know nothing I can say can make it better but please know that you are not the only one who is heartsick and outraged. Also know that you make a difference. You are a valued member of the knitting community and your authentic beautiful self is always welcome, whenever and whatever you feel like sharing (if you do).

  36. Give yourself grace and space.

    Thank you for all you’ve given to others.

  37. Hi Dana, I hope I will never go back to my blindness. Your honest talk keeps me looking inside, opening my eyes and stretching my heart to keep listening and learning what is needed to bring justice for people of color who have waited way too long.
    I love the colors you knit with and the patterns you choose. And your smile always brings me joy.
    Thank you.

  38. I want to add my voice to the chorus of support, Dana. Please delete and send into everlasting cyber oblivion any negative messages that come your way. For those of us who love you and your work, any insights you have energy to share are a gift. I’ve been following you all this time because you don’t “just knit.” Thank you for being the caring, creative thinker whose ideas have changed my life and so many others for the better.

  39. Having had the Golden Rule impressed upon me early on (I think my mom was alarmed at how I was treating my sister), I have always tried to speak to the humanity in all of us. Although sometimes I can still be pretty obnoxious. I’m not perfect. That said, I’m glad you are speaking to your own humanity by deciding to go on being YOU – knitting, blogging and sharing your awesome talent and personality. You have that right. Don’t let hatred win.

  40. Thank you for continuing to post and for being honest! I, too, just learned yesterday that Central park was built on land owned by a freed slave community. That really saddened me.

  41. Please do remain present. As a white woman who always thought I was open minded and aware but who sadly wasn’t always and certainly didn’t grasp the reality of our country I am learning the most from knitters speaking honestly from the heart. I trust my knitting community so much more than the news and media. So please continue to speak your truth as many of us listen in order to find a new truth.

  42. Dana, thank you for all that you do. I can’t know what it is to be a black woman in The US, but you have helped me understand so much more. I am grateful for everything you share, and that includes the rage. I came for the knitting, and stayed for the woman behind it.
    Thank you for sharing your truth with all of us.

  43. You are a bright light and I am here to listen whenever you speak. I was drawn in by your amazing knitting skills but learned so much more in the process. I appreciate all that you have given, it has made a difference in my perspective.

  44. You are such an inspiration on so many levels. Thank you for your insightful words and your exuberant knitting. Please take heart from the outpouring of encouragement and try to ignore the rest. I hope you have moments of joy and peace despite the bleakness of our current reality.

  45. I started reading your blog because of your beautiful knitting, your happy colors, your cute dog and husband sweaters – but especially because of the joy that you exuded when you shared those things. But I’m a supporter even if what you need to share is sadness, anger, frustration, and even if you can’t knit so much. And I’m a supporter even if you need to take a break sometimes. I see you and support you.
    You have shared how knitting has soothed you during some life challenges, so for your own soothing, I hope that picking up a little bit of knitting has been a help to you. The Stephen West test knit looks gorgeous.

  46. That sweater is beautiful and I hope that you can find some joy in knitting – even if it’s a little bit. I am a white woman and I have never thought of myself as racist. I studied history and political science in college, I still read history and the newspaper and am (somewhat) politically engaged. I give money to charities including the ACLU and Southern Poverty Law Center. But I know that’s not “enough”. I have certainly had the luxury of choosing if and when to think about race issues (and other issues). And I don’t want to live in a country where black people (or anyone) is treated unfairly or inhumanely for any reason and I don’t want to live in a country where that happens more to people whose skin is not white.

    Reading messages from you and others during this time has been enlightening and I thank you for it.

  47. I hope none of us every go back to the way things were. I hope and pray we all have more consciousness and that real change takes place. The colors in the sweater are beautiful. Please take care.

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