Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Just Like Mima

I swore when I was a teenager that I would never be like my mom. I was much too cool to be a homemaker, gardener, seamstress  - I had so many more important things I wanted to accomplish.

Many years later, I am a lot like Mima.

Although I worked part-time while my kids were growing up, I considered my role as homemaker to be the most important. My husband and I were blessed to be able to choose this lifestyle; we sacrificed some "goodies" in the early years but it was well worth it to be home for my kids.

And guess what - I love working in the garden. The hours go by and I barely notice them. I love getting my hands dirty, the refreshing spray of water from the hose, watching tiny plants grow and flourish.

Yes, I am a lot like Mima. Most recently, that has been reflected in my love of quilting.

Most of Mima's sewing was anything but fun or creative - she did piecework, first in a factory and later out of the our home. She spent long hours on boring, repetitive tasks. Her true talents and creative flair were saved for when she made something for one of us girls. If she saw a dress in a magazine or a store window, she could recreate it, usually with no pattern needed.

About four years ago I went to a quilting retreat. I had a bunch of "quilt of the month" blocks still in their unopened packages. I figured being in a house full of experienced quilters would be handy and I'd finally get the darn things done. The quilting bug bit, hard. Just like with gardening, I can get lost in the process and the hours slip by. I now have a home-based business making custom memory quilts. I also enjoy quilting for fun, and am experimenting with traditional pieced blocks, English paper piecing,  and the bold colors of modern quilting - and learning something new each day.

Mima did not have much time to teach me how to sew, but apparently enough of it sunk in!

So, I am a lot like her ... but I do NOT want to be "just like Mima." Because Mima has Alzheimer's.

Mima moved into our "empty nest" in October of 2010. I get to see the daily deterioration that her mind and body are undergoing. She is in the later stages of the disease, and has forgotten much of her past. She is also forgetting many of her family members, including her grandchildren.

One of the things Mima has not forgotten is how to sew. Her seams are not straight, and she's terrible at coordinating fabrics, but hey, she can still piece two bits of fabric together. I consider that a blessing.

This blog is my attempt to find the blessings in each day. I know they are there - but some days I am too impatient, tired, or scared to see/feel them.

It helps to have friends around, because friends can help me spot those moments of blessing. So, I invite you to come on in and visit with us as we continue this journey. As Mima taught me to say, "Mi Casa Es Su Casa!"

1 comment:

  1. Praying for you and Mima on this difficult journey, Lazara. My grandmother had Alzheimers too, and I have one of the last quilts she made; the fabrics are mismatched and the pieces cut all kinds of wonky ways, but I know her love and care are in the stitches.