"The Lord sends us the pieces," she observed, "but we can cut 'em out and put 'em together pretty much to suit ourselves." At first, life "looks pretty much like a jumble o' quilt pieces before they're put together; but when you get through with it, or pretty nigh through, as I am now, you'll see the use and the purpose of everything in it. Everything'll be in its right place." -- Aunt Jane of Kentucky
Today I opened the "door of memories" in my what-you-may-call-it room -- the large English armoire that houses all my fabrics. It hasn't been opened in a long time. A very long time.
As I was sorting through the fabrics, I thought about each one and what each meant to me. I had forgotten the online quilting group I joined in the early 1990s -- yet here were two pieces of fabric with name tags --Judy Ashe and Dorothy Burke. Instantly, I recalled their emails and our exchanges. I thought of how much fun it was each month to select a theme and colours, each making a block, and then last month's winner selecting the next winner. I was fortunate enough to win one month -- a lovely exchange featuring a block called "the garden path." These blocks had been put into an on-the-point layout and had waited patiently, through under-graduate and graduate school, death, loss, and changes I couldn't have expected, to be quilted. It shall be.
Then, I recalled Aunt Jane of Kentucky and how very much I loved her story. Through the collection of short stories, Aunt Jane imparts much wisdom about life and death; about sin and forgiveness; about hate and love. I had to look a bit to find the quote above, but it pretty much sums up how I have felt as I have waded through my what-you-may-call-it room.
A little more than 12 years ago, I was a stay at home mom, planning an early retirement, and making home comfy. I baked, gardened, quilted, knit, sewed clothing, curtains, tablecloths, planned parties, volunteered, and, in short, had the life I wanted. But, it changed in the time it takes to stop breathing and I was left with a lot of memories in that little room of mine that I didn't want to deal with. So, I replaced with newer things, newer projects, and left the others sitting alone. The memories were too hard to deal with, frankly.
However, today is a new day. I have fingered fabric that was in the process of becoming a Country Bride's quilt for our bed; I have lovingly smoothed fabric left from shorts or dresses; I have set aside three quilts waiting for finishing touches. I have sorted out fabrics traded, selected, or collected for quilts that will not be made. And, I survived.
It is time to get on with all parts of living. While I have moved on in many ways, this was the hardest thing I have dealt with -- projects, like dreams, that were unfinished. However, these projects will be finished and enjoyed and passed down. And new dreams have taken the place of the old. That is how life should be.