To understand Cultured Purls, you would have to know about Christine.
Christine Shannon was born the eldest of five kids and grew up with lots of responsibility caring for the younger ones. She was in lots of ways, the second mother to the whole brood. So it shook the family roots when she was diagnosed in 1999 with breast cancer. Being the fighter that she was, she endured everything the medical community had to offer to support her recovery. She had it licked for four years.
Then one morning, she felt an unusual pain in her breastbone which upon diagnosing proved to be the recurrence of her old nemesis. She was back in the fight.
Later, her oncologist told her husband that in the doctor’s mind, he gave her about six weeks. That was autumn of 2002.
She began at the beginning with chemo, radiation…. You name, she did it. During the long hours of chemotherapy, she and her sister sat at Virginia Mason oconology unit, knitting and watching Dr. Phil and Oprah. There was lots of debate about the guests, their situations, their decisions… Always lots of lively debate.
On days that her chemo laid her low and she had no energy to face much of anything, she and her sister would hang out at their local yarn store sitting, watching customers come and go with their projects, finished works, and questions. Again, true to form, there was always lots of lively debate. Chemo didn’t affect her spirit or her love of life. She offered lots of opinions.
The hours spent knitting and talking, whether at VM or at LYS were some of the most precious moments for the two sisters. They never took for granted the time they shared. They talked about all kinds of things: world issues, family issues, knitting dilemmas, you name it. They didn’t always agree, but they laughed a lot and they cried together a few times, too. Precious moments.
While the doctor had predicted, at least in his mind, that she would only survive six weeks or so, Christine didn’t give up the battle until October of the following year, 2003, after having beats the odds by better than a year. She was a strong fighter and a wonderful role model for tenacity, endurance and courage.
So to understand Cultured Purls, you should know that there will always be a place in our store where two sisters, or two friends, or even two strangers, can sit and knit and create precious memories together.
In her memory, for my sister, Christine.
Shannon Thomas, Owner