I started this quilt during the summer of 2017. A trip interrupted me, and then my mother asked me to free motion quilt her decades long crazy quilt project. So, I didn’t really get back to it until December. During the month of December I worked on the blocks, although those weren’t all finished until the first part of January.
Sometime during December, I started calling this my therapy quilt.
It is the first quilt I have worked on in a really long time. In 2016, I started having serious health problems. I was sent to ER nearly unconscious twice. In 2017, I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disorder and began treatment. The past two years, I have really struggled with severe depression. Yes, I saw a physician, got treatment and I’m trying to repair my health. But, I think depression has been something buried deep within me for a very long time. It’s that the last two years, it became worse.
So, I started calling this my therapy quilt.
It has helped me focus on something creative, on making good out of nothing, on healing.
When the clock turned to 2018, I was literally in a really bad place emotionally. I lost friends because of it. So, when I woke up January 1st, I pushed myself harder to work on more blocks. I finished all of the primary pieced blocks. Then I immediately moved onto the secondary blocks, which worked up much more quickly.
The epic bombcyclone snowstorm hit New England, and I kept sewing.
This is my therapy now. And this quilt has started me on the much needed path of cognitive healing.
Life got a little busy during February. Girl Scouts. Teaching. A furnace that stopped working. Depression.
I went to my local quilt guild meeting in the middle of February, and there was a demonstration on how to do magic binding. That inspired me to keep working on it because I really wanted to try that technique.
Instagram has also been my savior. I have followed a bunch of people on Instagram that share a love of quilting. When my insomnia hits, I go to Instagram, and start pouring through all the beauties that people share photos of. Seeing what others create pushes me to continue creating.
Nearly at the end of the quilting process, when I had 56 out of 63 blocks quilted, my machine seized on me. Now, normally, my modus operandi when I hit a mechanical failure is to rage. I don’t like it when things stop functioning. And we have had a lot of “things” break in our house. So I get mad. Now, don’t get me wrong, I did ask my husband to make me a vodka seltzer, but I sat down in front of the machine, tore it apart, and did some trouble shooting. I had it back up and running pretty quickly. This is a behavior change for me. So often I have abandoned a nearly completed project because some obstacle got in my way.
At the beginning of March, I completed Star Surprise. I finished my therapy quilt.
Note: I am seeking help. I have doctors. More than one. I have treatments. I also have a small cadre of incredible, loving friends who lift me up when I fall. To anyone who has witnessed any part of my journey over the last few years, thank you, and I love you.