Friday, December 14, 2007

Time to make a quilt!

For generations, the women in my family have made quilts. We have made baby quilts, and quilts to pay the midwife for delivering babies. We have made cozy comforters and beautiful wedding quilts. We make quilts to show our happiness, our gratitude, our acceptance and love, our compassion, and prayers. It is an all out project, something you must throw your whole self into. Something you ignore the housework to finish, and hurry to meet the deadline. You feel like you are doing something, even when there is nothing you really can do. When we finish, we vow not to do that again for a long time. At least until our hearts are full or breaking again. Then we will pour them into the washer with the new fabric and soap. We will wash, dry, and iron out all the wrinkles that we don't understand. We will cut them into pieces that make sense, that follow a pattern. We will piece them together to express our love and our hope, and feel like we are beginning to arrange our deepest thoughts and feelings. When all is done and sewn we oooh and ahhh and show everyone that comes in the door. We did something, and it's beautiful. Then we fold it up and take comfort in the bigness of it, the weight of it in our arms relieves the weight in our hearts. We give it away, the way we give our love to those who will cuddle up in the quilt.

This is Acadia's quilt. I helped make it, but it wouldn't have happened without Alan and Reita's help. They stepped in and became my quilting family this time, and I am so grateful to them for doing this with me.

The Psalm 139 Mermaid Quilt has verses from Psalm 139 illustrated by a little mermaid stick figure who is thinking about the presence of God as she "makes her bed in the depths", "travels to the far side of the sea" and "numbers the grains of sand".

Here is the quilt on Acadia's hospital bed ready to comfort her and remind her of the presence of God no matter where she is or what she is feeling.

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