Tonight as my sweetie read the pre-dinner Lenten reading my mind started writing a blog post on telling the story of who we are through our quilts. I tuned back in the as the reading connected the importance of place in our story and journey of faith. The Garden of Eden, The Garden of Gethsemene, The well at Samaria, Mamre, The Desert, The Upper Room, St. Charles Borromeo – Harlem, Americus GA, the Grand Canyon, Yonkers, the Bronx, these are places with deep memory of faith in personal history. In several of these places I can see bits and pieces of my life. As I’ve not been to the middle east I’ll let you guess where the memories are. The memories flit through of special moments in these places. Of the one who shares many of those memories, he holds my heart in his hands.
Each quilt made has a story of it’s own, revealing different moments to different people, at the right moment. As the maker of my quilts I know the story and share different things with different people. Truthfully I’d bore people to tears if I told every little detail about each quilt. Some tears would run down your face, others down your legs.
Faith and quilting are like breathing. Without them I would no longer live. In a moment of extreme doubt one night the words, “I’m quitting quilting” escaped my lips in front of my sweetie. His loving response, “No you would die.” At least part of me would, the one filled with life, joy, determination, confidence, creativity, connection. The part that is the story teller, the memory keeper, the mentor. These vital pieces of me that give me character and depth. And I am a character.
Hearing the stories of other quilters allows me to enter into their journey, empathize, commiserate, enjoy, process, be inspired, inspire, groan with them, rejoice with them, offer support. These stories are part of them. Each quilt tells part of their story. Only part. There is much about a person we may not know, nor may they ever reveal, to us. We all have things that are private, as well we should.
The quilt above, with the nautilus shell is sitting in a pile of quilts that need my attention. Sharing this is a little revealing so, bear with me here. This quilt is not finished in part because I’m afraid of it. I don’t know why. I don’t know what exactly is holding me back from completing it when deep down this must be finished. The last few years have yielded very little from my sewing room. Some good stuff, don’t get me wrong. Not yet the stuff that is bubbling below the surface whispering, flirting, seeking the attention it deserves. When this quilt is finished, when it goes out into the world for adventures of it’s own the immediate story of the fear that held me back from finishing won’t be told. Not to everyone. The story of succumbing to overwhelming fear is never a good one. It is one we all live at moments. That said, the story of working through it will be told, the one where I finally worked through the fear, how it wasn’t something magical, how it was damn hard work to get where I want to go. *stage whisper* I don’t even know where that is, and that’s good.
I praise God for this journey. I take His hand, and walk forward, beside him confident in His leading and prompting. The quilts, ah the quilts will be finished, in due time, in the right season. Some simply need more time, in process, to tell their stories.