“Off Center”, those were the words that Tammy used to describe Jon and me. She and Jon were having a Dog Support discussion and I came in at the end to say hello.
The words stuck because the description fit.
It’s taken me over fifty years to accept myself as someone who has stepped out of the norms of life that were expected of me. I think the words gave me a visual that I could place myself into.
But that’s not what I was thinking when I began making this quilt.
After I first sewed those few scraps of fabric together and made that long crooked house, then continued to let the crooked lines be, I was thinking of how life so often throws us off and how we’re constantly shifting to regain our balance.
All those arrows pointing in different directions. So many choices that are best made from going inside of ourselves, instead of looking out.
As I worked on it the quilt the long crooked house at the center of the quilt gained purpose. A place to go when everything around it was shifting.
Josie and Jenn left comments on my blog describing the sensation of “going down the rabbit hole”. Several people used the word “fun.”
I liked their take on it and the quilt certainly was fun to make.
Those curved slices of circles, scraps that came in a baggie from Karen, created playful spaces and shapes.
Then Therese wrote to me and said that the quilt speaks to her during this unsettled, yet hopeful time in her life. My first thought was that she was the person I made the quilt for.
This quilt is different than the last few I’ve made. Not what I intended when I started thinking about making a new quilt. But there it was, asking to be made in a way I couldn’t ignore. It came quickly and easily.
Maybe that’s part of it, learning to embrace those chaotic, shifting times in life.
Writing this I keep thinking of the first time I rode the Cyclone Rollercoaster in Coney Island. How I held my breath and grabbed the bar in front of me. How I tightened the muscles in my body and squeezed my eyes shut. But once I survived that first drop, my body loosened and my fear turned to fun.
Being off-center works for me now that I know how to find my balance within it.
My quilt Off Center is sold.