Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The Gift of a Quilt

quilter's often gift quilts to family and friends, 

usually to mark some occasion or another

but sometimes the quilt gives the maker a gift...

 

a few weeks ago I finally had an extra day off so I did what most of us do on days like that ... 
errands and appointments

mine was a doctor's appointment with a planned stop after at a local fabric shop to pick up some upholstery fabric



a day that started as a normal day and mid-way through, took a sharp right turn when my doctor found a lump during my routine exam

 and so began a whirlwind of appointments for mammograms and ultrasounds in a distant city

of course, none could be right away so there would be time to think
time to wonder and time to worry


I'm not one to borrow trouble and so I tried very hard to only think good thoughts...
 because most lumps are harmless cysts - 

except I know that isn't always how the story goes,
and I know that some of you didn't get the "sigh of relief" results that make you realize you have been holding your breath for two weeks...

and I hoped for that story so much I could barely think about it


and thankfully that is what I got...
after a very thorough going over, I was told I had four harmless cysts

so lucky, and so very grateful!

these quilt blocks my story is intertwined with are part of a Christmas wallhanging I am working on

after the doctor's appointment was over, that first day, I stopped for the fabric anyway - it was the last day of the sale and because the chair I am recovering belongs to someone else, I had to get it...

all the while reeling inside...

while standing at the checkout, I saw this quilt pattern and picked it up to look closer
I remember quite clearly thinking it would stupid to buy it - not only do I have 97 unfinished projects waiting at home, but also a great stack of books, patterns and fabrics waiting for their day in the sun...

the last thing I should be thinking about now is buying more, especially when I might...
 

I bought the pattern, picked out the fabrics that afternoon, and began

every night I worked on it - it was something new, and I wasn't getting all silly about having to finish things, I was doing what I always do, stitching and thinking,
"should I sell it in this year's sale, or keep it for myself?" 
 and
"it's so much work and will be too big for the sale - maybe I should make runners out the present blocks and a wall-hanging out of the rest?"

the kind of questions that run through my head with everything I make




this quilt gave me the gift of feeling normal when my world seemed upside down
it helped me focus on good thoughts and not dwell on bad ones
it gave me something to focus on when my mind threatened to wander

and with each of the twelve present blocks I thought of all the great gifts of life

20 comments:

marie said...

Thank goodness that all turned out well. I'm so glad that your quilt ministered to you in that special way. Great gifts of life indeed!

Dorthe said...

Dearest Jillayne, I`m so thankful, for you,-and your good result, -I know how you have been feeling,those weeks waiting, and think you are a strong woman ,being able to put your mind on other things, than the fear- and at the same time make such beautiful work og quilt art.
Warm hugs, from me.
Dorthe

FlowerLady said...

Dear Jillayne, I am so glad your news was good, and glad that your stitching kept your mind busy and focused on creating loveliness.

Beautiful work as always.

FlowerLady

Michelle May said...

Oh thank goodness!!! Oh I'm so happy you are ok! I think you should keep this beautiful quilt to remind you of a happy ending. Plus, it's gorgeous!
xx

Marj Talbot said...

I agree with Michelle - it is beautiful and will remind you of happy endings forever. It could be your HOPE quilt - we all need one. When my husband was diagnosed with cancer, I made him his Hope quilt - it kept me busy and distracted from terrible thoughts. I'd love to see the completed quilt - thanks for sharing once again - and so very glad you are OK.

Bead and Needle said...

So glad that the news was good...this will most definitely be a special quilt for you! XOXO Tanya

The French Bear said...

Oh whew!!!! I was worried when I started reading....Shell is right, something to remeber the happy outcome!
I have another cast but at least it's a little easier to be mobile. I would love to be at Out of Hand in April....
Hugs,
Mags,
xxx

MosaicMagpie said...

So very thankful for the good news. Your new quilt did provide a nice distraction at a time when it was well needed. Shell is right about this being a praise quilt! When we face problems like this and get a good outcome it makes us so very thankful and that is a good thing to. I am thankful for your good news too! When a friend is troubled our heart is troubled too. So come to think of it we can all be thankful!
Deb

dianehobbit said...

I am so glad that your news was good, I can't imagine what you must have gone through waiting for the result. I have my first mamogram tomorrow (50 this year, so just a routine check), I am slighty worried, just in case they find something but hopefully everything will be fine 9 no reason not to be). Love the work you produced whilst be positive. X

dianehobbit said...

ps Do you really have 97 UFO's? That brought a smile to my face and made me feel better about my box of them.

Createology said...

Oh My Dear Jillayne you have no idea how thankful I am that your news is good. You have written a lovely post saying so well what so many women (and some men) have to experience. I believe your positive thoughts were very much heard. Your projects are beautiful and I am so happy for you for tackling them to get through your time of the unknowns. Heartfelt Hugs to you my dear...

Alisa Noble said...

And THAT is the gift of Art.

I didn't realize that I was holding my breath, until you said all was okay. SO very happy {and relieved} for you, Jillayne!

Gigi Thibodeau said...

Oh, Jillayne, I 'm so glad it turned out so well, and I love what you said about the quilt giving you a gift. That is very much what we need at such an uncertain time. What a beautiful post, my friend. xoxo Gigi

Diane said...

Jillayne, I am breathing a huge sigh of relief for you! As you know, I've been through "it". In retrospect, not the worst thing that ever happened to me. I know...odd to say that, isn't it. But having been given a 2nd chance...that has been a silver lining. I'M SO GLAD YOU'RE OK!!! You received the best gift! Good health!
Blessings and XO,
Diane

Laura said...

Beautiful post, Mama Bear. Just sorry I waited til Friday morning 10 minutes before driving to work to read it. What I'd like to do instead is jump in the car, fly through the Rockies and give you a big 'ole hug! You're very brave to share this and I'm sure you've inspired everyone that's read it to be thankful for today and every day that follows. Love you!!

Celestina Marie said...

Dear Jillayne, I am thanking God that you are okay. Out of your challange, arrived beautiful and creative work. I have found in my darkest hours of worry and concern has emerged my best works. God has a way of helping us during the waiting times. Sharing your story will give everyone who read this post, encouragement. Thank you for that. Have a wonderful weekend and take celebration in your great outcome.

Love to you, CMD

Draffin Bears said...

Dear Jillayne,

So happy that the results were good for you, what a relief.
that waiting time can be so hard, and so glad that you were able to do some beautiful work to take your mind off the worry. Thank you for sharing your story.

Sending hugs and hope you have a wonderful weekend
Hugs
Carolyn

Maggie said...

I am so glad to hear that everything turned out alright. Must have been a terrible worry for you. Thank God for quilting, to get your mind off of everything.
Love your xmas balls....very nice indeed....you always come up with some great ideas...you are forever inspiring me. See you soon
hugs
Maggie

Becca said...

So glad you are OK Jillayne!
Love the quilt blocks!

nelda said...

I just found your blog and want to tell you how wonderful it is and what a beautiful writer you are. I am waiting on tests myself and you have inspired me to go do what I love and make something with my fabrics. The rest can wait.

PS. It would be soooo much easier to leave you messages if you would pretty please turn off word verification...especially now that we have to type in TWO squiggly words. Thanks!