My mother is an artist and a quilt maker. The first quilt I remember her making was in the mid-80s when her best friend was moving away to Missouri. She gave muslin squares to friends and family and asked them to write a message or embroider or paint something special. Then she sewed the squares into a giant farewell quilt. For her children and stepchildren, all six of us, she creates milestone quilts, one for every high school graduation and every wedding. The quilt pictured above is our wedding quilt. My mom is holding the upper left corner. My mom’s quilts are beautiful visual representations of people coming together to celebrate life and love.
Our wedding quilt is filled with images, quotes, and marriage advice. It had been packed away for a long time and I recently pulled it out. Last night, I noticed my grandmother’s square. Within her note about marriage advice, she’s tucked a little message just for me. “To Sarah and Chris, Love each other, communicate, share interests, play together, give each other space, Sarah, pursue your passion, and never go to bed without saying good night.” I read it again and again. Such a funny place to insert this little message for me alone. Funny that she would know I’d need reminding. On this path that often feels unclear and uncertain, I can hear my grandmother’s clear and certain voice.
It felt like a valentine, wrapped in my mother’s art, reading my grandmother’s words.