Reading the first chapter of Cravings throughout the day memories bubbled up to the surface. Mary speaks of the image with which we view our self, that more than likely it’s not image God sees. The memories hinting, oh hell they were saying at once, “see you’re not all that good,” and “here’s where some healing needs to happen.”
At one point she asks the reader to quietly listen to Psalm 139, to read it prayerfully and as though it is written by me, for me. That puts a different perspective on how something is read. Psalm 139 becomes much more of a love letter, and as love letters go this one holds within it’s stanza’s words that soothe the soul and rock the reader to the core, it rocked this reader.
The memories that bubbled up to the surface were something of a surprise, and yet not. They’ve bubbled up to the surface on and off over time asking something of me, not quite certain what, why. Right now these memories are allowing me to look at the things that have distorted the image of the person I see in the mirror, to peel back the layers. I can start to see these memories differently. As I write, give thanks, and listen it’s not so much about letting go, it’s about the Balm of Gilead, it’s about the healing.
Then there’s the tribe, the group of people gathering in to take this Cravings journey. I remember the first time time someone said to me, “you’ve found your tribe”, in a booth at Quilt Market a couple of years ago. I have. This is a tribe for whom I want to be better. There is the tribe of 2, my sweetie and me – this tribe is my safe place. There are the friends that I chat with every day – these two light up my world. There’s the friends since high school and the volunteer years just after. Then there’s my sisters.
Reading the pages, and paying attention I know that I’ve found my tribe.
Over time, as we quilt, we define who we are as quilt makers. We choose fabric, thread, quilting style (hand/machine), quilting type (hand/machine/longarm), applique style, oh quilters I could go on an on. These differences seemingly define us, differentiate us, put us in different tribes. There is one big tribe, we’re quilters, each with things that make us unique, and fun, and holy. Our disagreements are the stuff of legend. From “Who likes SunBonnet Sue”, “who dislikes here with great passion” (I will admit preferring BadSue in oh so many ways). And “who stole my stuff” to “I am offering my hard work to you at no cost” to “I really deserve to get paid for this”.
The other day chatting with a lovely member of my tribe I shared with her that I have a tendency to shoot myself in the foot. She reminded me that we all do sometimes. We have goals and dreams, and when we get near to reaching those we do something that stops us. In a way, knowing that I do this allows me to try to help other quilters avoid those things. Recognizing this means I need to do the work to get to where I want to go.
Where do you want to go? Is your quilting pulling you in a direction different from the crowd? Do you need permission to travel that path?
Finding our tribe, is a good thing. Finding our tribe helps us to grow, to hone our skills, to have something in common, to share, to have a cup of coffee or glass of wine with. The whole tribe is more. It’s beautiful, occasionally a pain in the backside, but beautiful. Thanks for being part of my tribe.