Patchwork Becomes a Quilt

Qulits are all the crafting rage. I guess I shouldn’t say rage about an article of material that has been around since time began. I’m sure our ancestors were sewing together hides to make coverings. Adam and Eve were given a patchwork of covering (In case you’re wondering- I’m covering both viewpoints of the birth of homo sapiens!).

Today there are whole sections of fabric stores and fabric stores totally dedicated to yards and yards of material to create as many covering as one has the desire to make. 

This morning I was thinking about my own journey through life as a quilt. Bits and pieces of my history unfolding as a quilt of my journey here on earth. There are some pieces of fabric that have been handed down to me in the way of  my family history:

Mother-a fiery red-head that was the life of any gathering. A Father with jet black hair and all the signs of a Black Irishman. I have a patch of material with both their names and influence in my quilt. 

But a lot of the pieces are ones I have discovered. One’s I have created (including three little red-haired bairns of my own). 

Sometimes our quilts don’t turn out like we hoped; some of the patches given us disrupt the original pattern we were hoping to achieve.
In my past, I knew a very successful lawyer who had everything going in his life. He is a senior partner of a law firm that is global, a wife of twenty-five years, and shining, goal-achieving children. I was envious of him- of his so called perfect life.

I am a visual creative, so I imagine pictures that represent ideas of my thoughts. I imagined his life as a beautiful table setting- the tablecloth was the highest quality Irish linen- a pale robin egg blue. On the table was the best of china, silver, and crystal, Everything sparkled, matched and well… perfect. 

Then I compared my own life-my own table covering as a representation of my life. It was a small round table covered with a quilt-like tablecloth. It was frayed on the edges. Nothing matched, but the plates and glasses were colorful and cheery. 

My life had not turned out the way I desired. I was divorced and raising three children on my own, living paycheck to paycheck. I had so wanted the lawyer’s table setting. I had done all the right things- finished college, married an Airforce pilot from a highly-educated and successful family, read all the books on marriage and relationships, etc. 

I was feeling sorry for myself and told my dear friend Rochelle who is my best cheerleader and friend. After describing the visual of the two tables, she asked me, “Which table is more interesting, more colorful?” I sheepishly said, “My table.” She had stated the obvious.

My life might not have looked perfect, but it was an interesting life. I had accomplished a lot on my own. I had started with zero as a single mom (I mean zero- no child support after 16 years of marriage). After being away from the workforce for ten years, I quickly found a career that today serves me very well. 

I have picked up and moved to three different cities- all beautiful cities- since the last child graduated from high school. I have made friends all over the globe, have all sorts of interesting people in my life, and have written a novel, started a baking business, and went back to graduate school to earn a Master’s in creative writing. 

I’m now focusing on a quilt that has an amazing man as part of my table covering. Walking the aisles of choices (online dating), I have found some amazing fabrics- men who are kind, interesting, sexy, adventurous, and special in their own way. I have sewn some into the quilt only to rip them out again. It has not been fun, but I know when the right one will be there, it will be so beautiful and will complete my quilt in so many ways.  It will be a covering we both will feel warm and cozy under!

Meanwhile, the patches of events, projects, discoveries and joys (two grandsons, so far) will all be a part of this colorful and sometimes eclectic life of mine!

The important takeway from the patches of our lives is to know it’s all perfect! There is beauty in how we place the patches together. I think we tend to look at our lives as separate pieces and don’t see the beauty of the whole creation- how one event, one discovery led to more growth, more awareness of who we are. We have the power to put it all together in a meaningful way. It is the only life we each have. We can keep ripping it up or accept what we have and what we can make of it. 

I hope the remaining pieces I create and that are given me are the best I have to make the entire process meaningful for me and for those I touch. Happy Sewing!



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