December 08, 2008

When life gives you scraps, make quilts

It's like "when life hands you lemons, make lemonade." My aunt had lemon, orange, and grapefruit trees in her SoCal yard, so they weren't the bad things the homily would suggest. Neither are scraps if you're fortunate to have the skill or inclination to use them.

Well, I've recently been handed a lot of sour bits and pieces.

A close friend's cancer metastasized. An in-law's cancer is more resistant to treatment than previously. One of my nephews isn't coming to Christmas this year. I got another diagnosis that requires permanent lifestyle changes to help ensure an active life; this follows a probably-unrelated diagnosis 11 months ago. Let's not get into talking about "fair."

One of the Lemonade Quilt designs I've discovered is to think about possible positive outcomes and reminders to cherish what's good now.

The recent diagnosis is a very strong incentive to create a healthy lifestyle for myself. It has immediate numerical feedback and some dire consequences to avoid. I can do this.

The several-day hospital stay that just ended (in itself a set of scraps of a totally new color that will hopefully become a nice quilt in a couple of months) produced another sour fruit: the night nurse spotted a probable sleep disorder. It's treatable and treatment would likely result in more energy and clarity.

All of these sour scraps are scary yet at the same time provide some opportunities.

And did you know that the phlebotomists use a new giant rubber band on each patient to prevent spreading germs? I brought home a couple of mine to open jars, pull needles, stop skids, etc. They're a less bulky and more useful memento than the pink plastic tub and curved vomit basin, for sure.

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