Friday, October 8, 2010

Quilting lessons

pieces of unfinished quilt
Dear (still-just-a-twinkle-in-my-eye) Baby Brooks,

I thought you should know your baby quilt is coming along just fine.

I’m really having a blast piecing it together and imagining the finished masterpiece. It will be like a work of art I’ve put all my blood, sweat, tears, and dreams into. But I do have to admit, this sewing business is a lot tougher than I thought it would be.

The other night, as I completed another small leg of the project, a realization hit me. In its own strange way, this experience is preparing me to parent you.

That might sound really odd to you. How could making a quilt be similar at all to being a parent? It wasn’t obvious at first. But the more I thought about it, the more these parallels to parenthood began to reveal themselves to me.

For example: when I began this, I was bursting with excitement. I could hardly contain myself. But as I’m wading deeper into things, I’m hitting a lot of bumps.

I’ll be honest. At times I’m so frustrated I think I could cry. I become overwhelmed. I wonder what made me think I could actually do this. I often remind myself that I really have no idea what I’m doing. Sometimes I think I’ve screwed things up so badly that they’re beyond repair.

But they’re not. To my own amazement, I fix them. And then I move on.

Sometimes, just when I really think I’m getting the hang of things, I reach more uncharted territory, more snafus I’m unsure how to handle. I wonder how many more snafu possibilities are waiting to be discovered. There could be hundreds, thousands of ways for me to mess things up. Frustration and anger make me feel like I want to give up.

But I don’t. To my surprise, I find strength. And then I pull it together.

I take a deep breath. I tell myself to be patient. I remember that quitting isn’t an option.

Every bump is a lesson I’ve learned. Every stitch is a unique impression I’ve left. Every step forward I take I wonder whether I could have done things better. I probably could have, the sewing’s not perfect. But neither am I.

Then I take a step back, evaluating my overall work. I decide it’s not so bad. I’ve actually done okay for myself. I’m pretty proud of it so far.

And I know it will be a masterpiece, a work of art, because it was handled with love. Blood, sweat, tears, dreams, and love. That’s what life, and parenting, are all about.

So things are coming along just fine. When you get here, I’ll be ready.

Megan Brooks
Sr. Public Relations Specialist
Texas Health Resources


  1. What a beautiful legacy to leave to Baby Brooks -- both the quilt and the words! This life is an adventure-filled journey, and that child (and your entire family) will be blessed by your attitude, your introspection and your boldness in approaching life with eyes wide open. Thank you, Megan, for sharing your heart so openly!

  2. Love the quilt. How did you learn to quilt? I'm interested in taking lessons in the Dallas area. Do you have any ideas where they are available?

  3. Thank you, Paula! Actually, my mother is teaching me how to quilt, it's an art that's been in my family for generations. This is the first quilt I've ever tried to make and it's been an interesting experience. Unfortunately I don't have info on quilting lessons but I do believe you can take classes at JoAnn Fabric Stores I would suggest giving the store a call and I bet they'd have information for you. Good luck!