When I was pondering my 2017 resolutions, I thought that what I really want to do is make time slow down.
Apparently, I haven’t reached that goal because look, January is already over.
I can’t say that this has been an awesome January. Well, in one sense it has: here in Utah, we’ve had quite a bit of snow. Snowy winters are my favorite. There’ve been several days when I literally only left the house to shovel the snow, and those are the best kind of winter days.
But there has also been this experience that has been awful. One of the most painful things I’ve ever experienced in my life. Partly I’m being vague about it because some of it is not my story, and because writing about it might make it worse, and because I am aching for the person making this choice. But part of it is my story, and if I could write about how painful this is without hurting the other person, I would. Except, maybe I wouldn’t because I’m feeling a huge amount of shame, in addition to the agony. I am ashamed that I assumed this person would love me.
And oh, does that sound angsty or what? Overdramatic much? That’s me.
I should just sum up: It’s been a difficult January.
To compensate, I have been furiously sewing. Kendell even asked me—“Why does it sound like you’re angry when you’re sewing?“ It’s just because of the walking foot on my machine.
It hasn’t been angry sewing (piecing and quilting, actually), but it has been a bit manic. A baby quilt in less than 24 hours is a little bit obsessive of me. (Remember how, in The Mists of Avalon, Morgaine makes the sheath for Arthur’s sword, and as she makes it she weaves not only magical protection into it, but also some of her soul, the part that loves Arthur? I kept thinking when I was making that baby quilt, I hope none of my sadness gets caught in the thread and the seams. I’m totally not losing it here.) But I finished quilting a monstrously heavy quilt, which has been waiting to be quilted since I wrote this blog post in, OMG, 2011, that I shall blog about soon, once I have the binding finished, which I can’t do until my Joann coupon is active because I need turquoise thread and who’s going to pay full price for turquoise thread? Not me.
Baby quilt, finished in less than a day. Mixed media quilt, quilted. And I also finally cut all the squares for my black and pink quilt. I’ve been buying fabric for this quilt for ages. Five years at least. Probably longer, considering it's been SIX YEARS since I started working on the mixed media one. After the snowy Saturday morning when everything exploded and I felt the darkest I have felt since 1989 (which was the first time I learned you should never assume anyone will love you), I needed to make something. So I gathered all of the fabrics from their spots, and I started cutting squares. I cut enough for 208 half-square triangles. I paired them all up, pinned and marked them, and I’ve pieced about half of them (which is, really, about one-quarter I guess).
Pink and black quilt has a good start.
I also made a few scrapbook layouts. I finished with Halloween and then I started on Christmas.
I worked a little bit more on setting up my scrapbooking space, but really, it’s stymied until I get more albums, and I am putting off getting more albums because, you know. Money.
But there was a little progress.
What I didn’t do: work out much. The first two weeks I was really good, but the last half of the month, not so much. I’d just rather continue getting chubby than spend time in the dismal rec center, pacing around while I wait for my turn on the one rowing machine there. Blog about my word for 2017. Talk to my mom enough. Avoid pity parties.
What I did do: eat too much sugar. (I swear to you: that little burst of happiness that comes when you bit into a dark-chocolate + caramel Ghirardelli square? That is the only piece of happiness I’ve had this month. Open, snap the corner, let the sweet burst of happiness spread over my body for 2.8 seconds. Repeat as necessary.) Swear too much. (There was one night—when the president announced he wanted to defund the NEA—that I sat in the parking lot with Kendell trying to string together a coherent sentence full of swearing that could express how vile that—is he even a person? Or a man? Let’s go with—individual is to me. I couldn’t swear hard enough. I did come up with a pretty vile metaphor, but I probably shouldn’t write it on my blog.) Argue with friends about politics, possibly making them ex-friends. (I didn’t mean to. I still like you as a person even if I think your stance on ____________ —women’s rights, education, cabinet members, immigration, public lands, and/or climate change, take your pick—is ridiculous/revolting/ridiculous/shallow/ridiculous/short-sighted/ridiculous. I should probably stop now.) Watch too much TV. (Despite the fact that for half the month, Dish Network was fighting with our NBC provider. Sometimes I stop and think about how strange watching TV is now and I almost can’t stand it. If it’s not on Dish, if it’s on Hulu or Amazon Prime or whatever, I’m lost. I have to get a kid or Kendell to turn it on. When do you use the Firestick? I have no idea. I just want to sit on the couch watching MTV and crying. Wait, it’s really not 1989, I can’t actually do that anymore because remember when MTV had music videos? That was awesome.)
I should be glad January is over. Except, I like January. Except, I am not feeling hopeful for a joyous February. Except, I want more snow. Except, I wanted time to slow down.
But, in approximately 18 minutes, it will be February whether I like it or not.
And whether I’m hopeful or not, February will also pass. Because if February comes, can March be far behind? (I don’t want March to come either. I don’t want to wander around under blue skies and on green grass, surrounded by flowers, pretending like I am OK. Nothing is OK, alright?)
I don’t want spring. I don’t want to have to brave the world in my chubby body without a heavy cardigan.
I’d just like it to stay January forever.
(This post inspired by a poem I stumbled upon tonight, “Snow” by Naomi Shihab Nye, which has the lines “How there can be a place/so cold any movement saves you.” Writing is my attempt to move in this cold place I find myself in.)