I found something fascinating once I got the hang of putting those rows together and pressing my foot on the pedal: I couldn't stop. I turned on a trashy movie (read: romantic comedy) and kept going long after Sam had gone to bed. In the morning, I only wanted to get back to quilt time. And within an easy 24 hours (with its share of distractions) I had finished the top. We went back early in the week to get the border and back, and by week's end, I was done.
I don't know what it is about quilting, and we'll see how future projects go (a quilt for Sam is nigh unto done), but I think I'm in love. I love the purr of the machine, the press of the pedal. I love that I feel like I'm improving something, making something, being homemake-y even, creating beauty, and I don't have to clear space in my brain for it like I do when I'm trying to write. I have something at the end of the day that isn't undone, that lasts, that I can use for heaven's sake.
And another thing I like, maybe what I like most about quilting: my quilt was full of mistakes, full full full of them. My squares weren't perfect squares, my seams weren't perfect seams, there were folds where there shouldn't be folds, my attempt at binding was sort of a joke, and I once sewed an entire row to the wrong side of the next row. I panicked about this at first, fretted and (I think) even apologized out of habit (I'm a chronic apologizer). E stopped me, said, "Deja, listen, this thing, this sewing thing? It's not the sort of activity you have to be perfect at. Fabric is forgiving. Your quilt will be beautiful, you'll see."
[the finished product]
[the soft back]
If you'll forgive me for saying so, I think she was right. It turned out more beautifully than I could have dreamed. I take no real credit for it. Remember, I made all of the mistakes, and E was an insanely good teacher who walked me through every step. But I'm grateful to have something like this exist, something so full of mistakes, and yet beautiful. I'm thinking, I'm thinking that a quilt is a hopeful thing.