My mom made me this beautiful quilt when my husband and I got married and moved into our first apartment. It is TRULY a work of art. The square neutral patches are the background, with multiple peaceful patterns alternating in connection. The flowery borders outline the work with mini polka dots of roses and bold reds.
The bulk of the beauty though, are these large intricate hearts all over the quilt. Within each heart are 2 smaller hearts. And every heart is woven together from 6 different fabrics. Together, they create an intricate pattern of beauty and grace.
I can’t begin to fathom how she did it.
Even as a grown woman nearing 40, with 4 kids and a decade and a half of marriage under my belt, I still tend to grab it when I am feeling low. Wrapping my soul up in it’s comfort, I feel something that represents a warm hug from my mom.
Looking at the snow and weary from a rough night, I snuggle myself inside of this love-work. Tenderly touching the varying textiles sewn together, I recalled the name. “It’s a Ragged Heart Quilt” I remember my mom saying when she gave it to me.
Now for the first time, I’m seeing the NAME in it’s fullness.
Feeling tender in the moment I can’t help but wonder, aren’t all our hearts…a little ragged?
We start out with -ready to be filled and ready to give- spaces inside us. Over time, life takes pieces of our hearts…and they get a little torn up here and there. Their look begins to change and it feels like the broken pieces will never fully mend together. They are no longer perfect and parts feel missing, even.
Slowly but surely and moment by moment, something happens. A phone call from an old friend, a game with a child, a good meal, a thoughtful note, a fond memory, a beautiful day, a pretty artwork, a funny joke, a great trip, an old picture…one at a time different pieces come together. Filling new places and healing old ones.
Our hearts start taking shape like different people that come in to our lives. And all these pieces get sewed in together for a pattern and patchwork all it’s own.
Threads of our hearts are a little worn on the edges, some even stick straight out at times! Both vulnerable and courageous, this is how our very own hearts get stitched together.
I think all these different pieces in our life will fill in the gaps if we let them. Your family & friends, your failures & triumphs, your pain & forgiveness…and all the spaces in between.
Love decides to cozy up and sew together a hole we didn’t even know we had. With the color of others and threads of tenderness, we eventually…become whole.
I now know why I subconsciously grab this quilt when my own heart is feeling a little bit frayed. I can take one look at this beauty and remember I am loved. I can think on the labor and the artistry it took to make, and be reminded…
there is a stitching together taking place in me too.
It’s a hemming in that will take all my pieces – the tender, the worn, the old, and new…and make something eclectic and beautiful.
And my own ragged heart will bring comfort to another, who is in need of a patch that looks a little bit like mine.
I hope you can hold onto the pieces that make you feel loved and find healing in stitches anew. There sure is a beauty to be found in the the filled in places tucked away in your own story.
And a uniqueness that only your heart can offer… to another ragged heart quilt in the making.
In a time where we might feel like bits and pieces, and a little ragged for the wear...
let’s remember that we are a part of a beautiful masterpiece that helps hold other hearts together.