I think most of us in the yarn community are familiar with the Prayer Shawl. In case it's new to you, it's when a knitter (or group of knitters) makes a shawl for someone who is sick and prays for the recipient while working on it.
The other day I got a note from an old friend, Emma. I met her just about the time I bought Lorna's Laces. She's a painter and before she moved to St. Louis, she had the studio right across the hall.
Emma and I shared a cup of coffee most mornings and got to know one another little by little. Over time, I learned that Emma is a breast cancer survivor. When we first met, she had just hit the one year post-diagnosis milestone. Like everyone, I know many people who have fought cancer, but she's my one of a very few real friends that have faced the disease.
Six years later, after having been clean for over five, Emma's cancer returned. This time it's metastasized to her bones and the prognosis isn't good. She's undergoing a long series of chemotherapy treatments, but it's palliative rather than therapeutic, they are trying to give her good quality of life for as long as they can.
Emma has always been a knitter, but it's become a bit of an obsession lately. It gives her something to keep her mind off the cancer. Even more than that, it's given her a purpose. Her goal is to knit a substantial piece for everyone in her family as a remembrance. This way, no matter what happens or when, they will always have a way to feel her hug.
How cool is that? It's like a reverse Prayer Shawl.