I’ve been pondering how to start my restart in this blog. It went dead, I’ve decided to revive it. Even though the blogging stopped, the creating never stopped and it will not ever stop in my life. It might take a long nap but the need to create will never go away.
I thought about what the first post of the restart should be and I wanted it to be filled with colorful, fun things that I’ve created in the last year. Unfortunately, there’s something that I need to write about and just get out of my system. (I promise there’s creativity here, stay with me.)
Last October, my friend Ray passed away. It was a very sudden and shocking death, the emotional equivalent to getting the wind knocked out of you. I think the news sucked all of the air out of my home. I’ve never experienced a death like this, all of my previous experiences involved old people whose time had come before the passing had happened. Death was expected before the death ever happened, emotional preparations were made early, acceptance came easy.
It took me two days to really cry about the whole thing, I was on auto-pilot and finally hit my breaking point while ordering flowers for his funeral. The representative asked me what I wanted to put on the card for the flowers, I said what my heart told me to and then I had a three hour long, stomach wrenching cry. I will never forget how patient and gentle the representative was to me, I needed her at that moment.
Grief still comes in the most unexpected of times. It will wash over me and create a sadness that I didn’t know was possible. There are times when I still can’t believe that it’s true. There are times when the cold, harsh reality of death permeates my brain, it whispers in my ear “All that you know is temporary.” Death is scary and feels unnatural to me, of course the irony is that death is one of the most natural things we’ll experience.
Let me tell you a little bit about my friend Ray. He was super-saturated with color, he was a former drag queen and he had a singing voice that was deep and rich. He was a prolific song writer, his songs had meaning and his lyrics were touching. He was tall, he had big, blue eyes and one of his front teeth jutted out just so (he hated it, I always found it quirky and endearing). He loved his partner Andrew so much and they were an amazing couple. They were natural together.
He was kind and his kindness was effortless. He wrote me the most touching email I’ve ever received in my life when I really needed it. He told me he loved me because I had “the ability to be funny and bitchy but able to turn it off when things got real”. He stole my beer out of the fridge every time he came over, I would very much like to see him rooting around in my refrigerator and popping open a Bud Light. I would like that very, very much.
Creative people seem to thrive on sadness and depression, we create things to express the things we can’t say in words, maybe it’s easier for us that way. I decided to make a quilt for my home for Ray, a reminder of his presence, a hope that his spirit comes to visit us once in a while in some obscure and gentle way.
Ray liked owls, owls were to be involved.
In regards the construction of the quilt, it’s a very simplistic design. The fabric squares were too pretty to cut up and I wanted the pops of color against the natural linen.
I chose the backing because the flowers are drawn in a similar style to some of the flower patterns. I liked the happiness that it brought and the slightly retro feeling. I also used 100% cotton batting which gives the quilt it’s crinkly, old feeling after I washed it.
Ray, thank you for being in my life. I miss you.