Sunday, February 17, 2008

Love, Chaos and Meandering


After a week of love, chaos and meandering, it felt good to get back into the sewing room again. I've only had enough time to do small projects, but I love doing all of them and am grateful for the time I get to spend using my new Viking Sapphire 870 Quilt sewing machine!

The 'love' is for Valentine's Day and in memory of my dear Aunt who just passed away at the age of 81 after a lifetime of mental illness. She married my uncle as a young, vibrant woman...an intellectual genius who spoke 15 languages fluently, and was recruited by the CIA during WWII as an interrogation interpreter. Secrets with terrible memories, kept for decades. They broke her spirit, her intellect, and her amazing gifts as a classical pianist. Instead, she led a tortured life as a schizophrenic. But as one who at least was cared for, with great love, at home by my uncle for more than 50 years.

The 'chaos' is the acceptance that even her life had meaning and value. It is also the dealing of the aftermath of such a loss, especially now when my uncle is, himself, struck with the dementia of one of the branches of Alzheimer's relentless growth. And now, he like so many others must face that arduous journey of loss and acceptance.

The meandering is the gift of a brother's week long visit and the chance to talk for hours and hours...catching up on the news of my parents and other relatives, as well as the kuspuks making classroom where I'd spent 25 hours in one week sewing with my sister-in-law's second grade class.

So, this week after the love, after the loss, after the leavings...came my 'potholder therapy. Along with the love, the crumb chaos patchworking and meandering quilting, I stitched pieces of my own life back into its own patterns again....loss and acceptance, stagnation and growth, change and creation. Sometimes 'comfort quilts' are strings and strings we piece together for ourselves and not just others. And little 'kitchen quilts' are just as comforting as any others.

Life is a series of hard times contrasted with good ones. But like doing anything that you love, sewing and quilting keep both the heart and the hands busy, and help in the healings of the all of the hard things we have to face and accept. And my potholder therapy never seems to fail me.

2 comments:

  1. Isn't it amazing how a bit of time sewing something you love can help center you?

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  2. There is so much swirling about inside you... and I completely understand your need for fabric and sewing therapy. Bless you ~ take care.

    ReplyDelete

Michele Bilyeu blogs "With Heart and Hands" as she journeys between Douglas, Alaska and Salem, Oregon.