Some of my amazing readers have asked to see my first quilt. I’m terrified to share this with you. I haven’t always been a quilter. I actually started 10 years ago this year. I can’t share the quilt without the story behind it.
In the summer of 2001, I came home from college. I had been surrounded by teenage freshmen and found myself 2000 miles away from my closest friends in a wilderness of ‘grown ups’. I couldn’t believe how lonely I was. And then a recent graduate of my university showed up at church and asked me out. I said yes. We fell in love. He became my first serious boyfriend. I traveled back to school in the fall, and from a distance, my first love wasn’t as perfect. But I still loved him. We talked on the phone every day. He replaced all of my closest friends. I turned 19. He turned 28.
I knew in my heart he was not right for me. On the night he planned to propose, I broke it off. It was the hardest decision of my life, and also the best. I was broken-hearted. My parents supported me, but suggested perhaps he would take me back. Maybe I made a mistake.
I felt like I needed to make something to fix what I had broken. I cut up some of my jeans that I had worn while we dated. I found white and red bandana in my mom’s stash. I pulled out my Grandma’s old singer and I set to work. I sewed like my fingers were on fire and I cried. A lot.
The quilting is full of puckers, bunches, and birdsnests. I had never heard of making a half square triangle from two squares, so I sewed a lot of bias pieces. My points are no where near matching up. I didn’t know to bind quilts, so it is simply a pillowcase turned inside out. It has two layers of poofy poly batting inside. Cotton what?
And when I was done, I felt better. Not whole yet, but better. And when I went back to school for the next semester, I had a nice boy waiting on my doorstep. I wish I could thank him and apologize to him. He picked up a lot of broken pieces. He dealt with a lot of sh*t from me. And he and I parted with me being a bit more ready to face the world.
And now I quilt because I can. I enjoy it. I love challenging myself. It is a place I can be fearless. It still gives me a huge feeling of accomplishment to finish a quilt. Sewing on those last few inches of binding is my happy place. I am reminded that I am worth something. That I can be something more than I am, as long as I keep trying.
So, why did you start quilting? Do you have a story? I would love to hear it. I’d love to have a link up party, if anyone is interested, maybe starting next Monday? You can share your first quilt and the story. I have a few things in my shop that I think could find their way to a new home via a giveaway, if anyone is interested. Just leave me a little note in the comments, if you have a story to share. I read every one and try to respond in the evenings when my beautiful children are tucked in and my husband and I have a bit of quiet. A husband I cherish. Children I am absolutely in love with. And in a strange way, I might have neither if I hadn’t started my first quilt.