Mar 4, 2014

Finding Peace

If any of you have followed the art and quilting journey of MaryLou Weidman, then you might know that her husband, Mark, was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer last year.

Mark has been fighting a valiant and courageous battle, and with many rounds of chemotherapy, his tumors had been shrinking. Recently, however, MaryLou shared that his brain cancer has returned and it has been very, very hard on all of them.

She asked us, if we believed in prayer, to send prayers for peace as they have all had a most unsettling time with this hard, and most challenging of news.

If prayer is not a word you choose to use, then simply substitute positive thoughts, caring or loving thoughts, or whatever imagery or words you use when your own heart reaches out to another and you wish the best for them.

When I first learned that Mark's ongoing battle with brain cancer tumors had returned, I immediately began to make one of my prayer flags for him. I have learned from so many challenges facing my own family that when someone is facing a terminal disease, often it is peace and faith in whatever power you see as being a force in the Universe, that serves one best.

So, went MaryLou asked us to send thoughts of peace for them, I simply popped my completed prayer flag into an envelope, and sent it as quickly as I could. My intent had been there all along, the manifestation of that intent in process, so all I had to do was send it on the wings of "lung-ta" the ancient word for the winds that blow the prayers to those who need them, via the modern winds of 'priority mail'.

For after all is said and done, it is only love, only peace with all that is (that is often also called faith or grace), that serves one at the very end of all of life's challenges.

We focus on staying centered and positive, we focus on the heart as the center of loving kindness, and we send those energies out into the Universe for universal good through the seat of our own power as loving and sentient beings.

So, today, I honor that process, and that love, that feeling, that hope for health and healing of the human heart for a sense of peace for Mark, for MaryLou, and for their children, grandchildren, and loved ones.

They are surrounded by so many loving friends, family, neighbors, and quilters who have taken MaryLou's quilting classes, purchased her books, and perhaps even made one of her now famous 'cow' quilts that created such a stir at the Houston Quilt Festival in November.

So, even though it hurts my own heart to know that a friend's heart is hurting, so do I also know the power of friendship, the power of loving and caring, and the power of good and positive intentions for another.

Mark has been described as the epitome of the 'gentle man' a man who treasures family, who has worked hard all his life to be a good provider, who tries so hard to be there for his wife and his children, and to be brave when all of this is so deeply frightening, unpredictable, and challenging.

I sent Mark and MaryLou Weidman (*pronounced Wide-man) this prayer flag with its blessing the rainbow that comes at the end of the rain, a dove that brings peace and good wishes, and the symbols of love, happiness, and hope in my prayer flag.

We infuse or concentrate goodness (godliness), wholeness (holiness) to create the place of feeling whole and complete no matter what happens, or what may come our way. This is the heart and center of the place of the great peace (piece) that passes all understanding.

Words and meaning may change through time but the intent and the manifestation of that intent, remains the same.

Picture an image of Mary and Mary in a red convertible with big smiles on their faces, the wind whistling through their hair, and a feeling of pure and perfect peace and joy, no matter what comes their way, in their hearts.

My prayer flag of peace arrived this past week and is showering them with love and blessings in their Spokane Valley home. May your blessings be sent to them as well.

Other ways to show support:
Send Mark a "thinking of you" card
Visit MaryLou Weidman's website (take a class, buy a book):Mary Lou Quilt Designs - Home
Visit her blog at:MARY LOU AND WHIMSY TOO and leave a nice comment
Keep them in your hearts

A facebook note from:
Mary Lou Donahue Weidman Mark's white dove Peace hanging is in the bedroom hanging by the is beautiful! And a reminder of someone who loves us. Thank you Michele. That was very thoughtful and touched us both...mark went up right away to hang it...he loves it!

Michele Bilyeu (*pronounced Bi-lue) blogs With Heart and Hands as she shares a quilting journey through her life in Salem, Oregon and Douglas, Alaska. Sewing, quilting, and wildcrafting, with small format art quilts, prayer flags, and comfort quilts for a variety of charitable programs. And best of all, sharing thousands of links to Free Quilt and Quilt Block Patterns and encouraging others to join her and make and donate quilts to charitable causes.   Help us change the world, one little quilt, art quilt, and prayer flag at a time!


Carol- Beads and Birds said...

Beautiful Prayer Flag. I made Prayer Flags while watching the Olympics. My mantra is A Thought Is A Prayer. I believe you send a prayer into the Universe each time you gaze on a Prayer Flag.
xx, Carol

Michele Bilyeu said...

That is exactly how it works, Carol! And you know this so clearly and it is one of the reasons that you make them and why I was drawn to you and your blog!

Quiltdivajulie said...

Lovely post, Michele . . .

Sandi said...

Michele! I would like to say a heartfelt thank you for this lovely post about Mary Lou and Mark. I truly believe he is a gentleman and a gentle man, I have been honoured to meet him at the retreats I attended in the Spokane area and he is deserving of the thoughts and prayers you send. I am sure they will fly your prayer flag with love and honour,

Michele Bilyeu said...

Thank you, Julie. I know that you know and have been a friend to MaryLou in so many ways. Your friendship is treasured by so many of us!

Michele Bilyeu said...

Oh, Sandi, thank you so very, very much. I received the sweetest note from MaryLou, today, that I added it to the end of my blog post. We must all just keep them in our hearts..each and every day and each and every step of this journey.

quiltingtaylormade said...

A project on The Warm Company's website led me to your blog and the entry above about Mary Lou and Mark is just beautiful. I'm glad I found your blog !!! My choir director at church just announced two weeks ago that he has colo-rectal cancer and I'm going to make him a prayer flag !!!!! THANK YOU !!! Also I saw that you have a link about the Sochi Patchwork project. When I first saw those posters, I was mesmerized and thought -- how cool is that to incorporate a quilt into the Olympics ??? I researched it online and it's a most interesting project. Then Hoffman Fabrics announced that they had designed a quilt "When Bali Met Sochi" and were giving away a kit of their fabrics to one lucky person. Guess what ?!?!? That lucky person is ME !!! I'm so excited and they notified me today they sent the package out today. For you and your readers, the pattern for this quilt is offered as a free pattern on the Hoffman Fabrics website. Just go to "Free Patterns". We certainly learn from one another don't we ?? Gotta go make a prayer flag !!