Last week, I had one of my dreams come true.
Through a random series of events, a good friend of mine contacted me last-minute with an extra ticket to go see Ina May Gaskin, an amazing American midwife and activist, speak at a conference in Toronto – potentially a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity! Brad was kind enough to help me figure out how I could work it out (I had to leave at 4:30 and wouldn’t be home until 10:30, the longest I’ve ever been away from Gil, not to mention that Brad had already made some fairly firm plans for that evening).
Honestly, the thought of seeing her and potentially meeting her had my heart beating faster than is normal ALL. DAY. LONG. I was so excited! We worked it out, and I headed out to see one of my sages. If you’ve read this blog for a while, you’ll know that both Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth AND Spiritual Midwifery are both on my list of essential childbirth preparation books. These books were tantamount in my ability to trust my body and choose a homebirth for both of my kids.
The event began at 7PM and she spoke until 9PM, with a short intermission in which she did a book signing. It was an incredible evening full of inspirational talk – from everyone except me.
As I am waiting in line to get my brand new copy of Birth Matters signed, my eyes are drawn to another woman standing in line. I hmmm and haw for a moment or two, and then all of a sudden it hits me.
Me: (totally touching her arm and invading her bubble) Excuse me. Are you Stephanie Pearl-McPhee?
YH: For most of today!
Me: Ummm … are you going to get Ina May to hold your sock? I obviously read your blog.
YH: Yes. Do you have a sock with you? Do you need to borrow one? I am packing.
Me: Well, I brought yarn to start a dishcloth but I just couldn’t knit while she was talking. How do *you* knit while she’s talking? (pause) Nevermind. You probably don’t have to look.
Me: Um, can I get a picture of you with your sock?
Me: (Fumbling stupidly for camera) Here it is! (Takes picture). Thanks so much for not being weird about me taking your picture.
YH: I’m used to it!
It was ridiculous. Had I been expecting to meet her? Say at a book signing? I wouldn’t have been so idiotic. I would have said something like, “I read your blog even before I started knitting, and we have a lot in common – I’m a La Leche League leader!” There was, to be fair, a bit more to the conversation, including a discussion of ‘kinnearing‘, but yeah. That was the bulk of it.
Oh wait. It gets better.
I was so flustered that I’d just met the Yarn Harlot that when it came time to have Ina May sign my book, this was the conversation:
Me: Hi! How are you?
IMG: Good, you?
Me: Oh good! I’m sorry it snowed in March here.
IMG: Well they tell me it makes everything a lot prettier.
Me: (nervous giggle) Yeah. (takes book back) Thanks so much!
Yep. Sorry it snowed. No “Your books were instrumental in me trusting my body and having two home births!” No “I’m thinking of becoming a midwife – in part, because of your books!”
Nope – “It snowed,” was the best I could come up with.