The last few days have been a true challenge in my life. My art quilting career has spanned nearly 20 years, and though my work has not been award winners, it has made me very satisfied, for I am not a person who wants to ever be competitive. It is not who I am. I make things that speak to me spiritually or in which I find humor. I have participated in group projects or challenges, but they are not competitive in nature.
For some reason, I suddenly wanted to access my quilts for I have a few that I have out next to my sewing machine that I have worked on or thought I could get to working on soon. Being a caregiver for my significant other has not left me much time or energy for such things, but it has given me a great desire to create again. When I think of how I feel when I am creating, I guess it is somewhat like Peter Pan and how he could fly away to places unknown where adventure always awaited him with opportunities to be who he really wanted to be.
I looked in the places where I would have kept my quilts, and I realized that they were not there. And as I looked in other places where I might have been able to store them, I realized that they were not in those places either. I have had quilts I collected and used in my studies and giving talks and teaching quilt restoration classes stolen so theft is not new to me. But this somehow struck my heart like the sharpest of arrows, for I just posted one of my mother and me, and another I wrote some words on about death shortly after she died.
This time I am not sure if it was the people where I lived in Calimesa – a bunch of senior bullies and drug addicts and drug selling/human trafficking people who had, back in 1994, assaulted and bullied me until I developed severe PTSD. I am just giving a tiny bit of what was done to me, but to this day, it still comes back to haunt me at times. I have my second degree in Criminal Justice with a minor in law, and I had thought I would become a mentor/advocate for juvenile delinquents, but the cancer surgery in 2016 and my age then – 74 – was against getting hired for that even though I have previous excellent experience when I worked with a high school department for juvenile delinquents.
Right now it appears that a large number of my art quilts have been stolen. The reality or possibility of that was overwhelming, and I just had to lie down and sleep, or try to meditate for the last couple of days. Today I am moving forward, working on my Pumpkin cookbook, which is in its 3rd revision, and I will likely put into print before the end of this month. Yes, my heart is somewhat broken from things I put my love and best efforts into, but at the same time, here I am going on 78 in November, and I believe that I can make more quilts if I so choose. Perhaps not everything we create is meant to live on forever, just as we don’t likely live on in our present life form forever. I feel more saddened for the people who do these evil deeds, for they have lost something that cannot be regained when they continue to do these things – their compassion and humanity.
I have lived a difficult and challenging life, but I still have compassion for others, and I still do work or deeds every single day to try to help others in this lifetime. So I have only to look back on life and see how far I have come, and to thank those who did such terrible things directed at me, for it is those people who have made me strong. Yes, I will cry at times, and I will mourn, but I will get back up again and start over as many times as I need to and am physically and mentally able.