I just finished piecing the second quilt since mom died. It’s called Tears in the Spring. Rather appropriately, we have had an incredibly rainy spring. I pieced this quilt out on our porch with my mom’s black featherweight. I brought it home from her house, oiled and cleaned it and started piecing this quilt.
I had been holding on to the Cherrywood Robin Egg fat quarter pack for about a year. My mom’s favorite color was teal, so this was the perfect pack. I didn’t have a plan at first at all, Just a general idea. I used my Accuquilt Go and cut as many half square triangles from the fat quarters that I could get. Turned out to be 24 of each color.
After they were all cut then I decided to plot my idea into EQ7 and make sure the colors spread across the quilt the way I saw in my mind’s eye.
I cried a lot piecing this quilt. I suspect I will cry more when I’m quilting. The relationship mom and I had was interesting and difficult. We had SO MANY similarities, but our difference were pretty stark, the few that were there. Our relationship was challenging for both of us, that’s for sure! And these last few years had been years of not as much time together for many reasons: work, business, (one ex-husband who was an absolute asshole as it turned out) and personally for me putting up some more boundaries. (Remind me to focus on a quilt later to work through my “father issues”.)
But, one of the things that we definitely had in common, was the quilting. She and I both would much rather skip the piecing bit all together and just get to the quilting. So, when I sit down to quilt this one, my intention will be to focus on thinking of the things that mom and I had in common.
Death/dying often results in regrets for those left behind. Regrets and second guessing. Both mom and I had many challenges these last few years. I readily admit hers were more in number and greter difficulty than mine were. She dealt not only with several health issues, but also a divorce. I had pulled away from her quite a bit, hoping she would go on and make some new friends as she lived nearly two hours from us – I couldn’t be her only friend.
I have to say, she did make some good friends through her work. But, I think mom was pretty much where I am with the quilt community right now (with the exception of a small number), which is, disappointed. Neither of us are (were?) “popular” girls, and that is a handicap in the quilt world it seems. She also had small town popularity issues to deal with. (If you’ve never lived in a SMALL town, you probably just won’t get this, sorry!) To be pointe blank, the quilt world can be like “Mean Girls”.
Sewing and quilting gives me time now to think about mom and to talk to her while I sew. I feel like taking mom into our home and my caregiving to her in her final months gives me a bit of leeway on how guilty I feel. She was sick, but I think she was happy living with us. I told her I loved her all the time. Seriously. All. The. Time. I also lost my patience, a lot. While it was directed at her, it wasn’t really about her. And by the end of each argument or nagging was my apology to her that I was just scared. Really fucking scared. I wasn’t mad at HER for not eating, I was mad that she COULDN’T eat more. But then, it wasn’t really that she couldn’t eat. It was that she was fucking dying. I was just inconsolably angry that my mommy was dying before my eyes. Getting smaller and weaker each day. (I want to say here that my friends were miracles at that time. They came over. They visited with mom. They checked in on me. They supported our little family. They played music for my mom, and just let her zone out and listen. They made her feel welcome and included in our activities and parties. Thank you a million times over, each of you.)
This is getting long. I know. I’m sorry. I don’t really expect many to read all the way through, because right now it doesn’t even matter. These posts are more about my therapy. My process.
So, as the months go on, I do hope you will forgive me and allow me my posts about mom. A blog is so much cheaper than therapy after all. And Lord knows, mom would love me to save some money. 😉
I love you mommo.