Saturday, June 1, 2013

A Quilt Comes Back: Bittersweeet

When my father-in-law died in 1997, I decided to make my mother-in-law a throw quilt. I imagined her curling up on the couch with it while she watched television. "Wrapped in love" was my thought. I made her a scrappy quilt-as-you-go quilt (53" x 70"). I was already concerned about her memory and suspected she was in the beginning stages of Alzheimer's. This was confirmed when I saw the photograph of her wrapped in the quilt. She has such a confused look on her face.

I should have realized that my mother-in-law would never consider using the quilt on the couch. She was very much a "quilts go on the bed" person and was always perplexed by my wall hangings. Anyway, a phone conversation a week after I gave her the quilt, she shared that the quilt fit perfectly on her childhood handmade bed where she had moved after my father-in-law died. She truly believed I had made it to go there. 

I am amazed at how well it has stood up to the many, many times it has been thrown into the washer and drier over the years. It is incredibly soft. This quilt was my touchstone with my mother-in-law. When she could not remember who I was, all I had to do was mention the quilt and we would connect. Having it returned was something I did not think would happen and it is bittersweet. Thanks to everyone for their messages of sympathy. They were appreciated.


  1. Absolutely lovely...the story, the quilt, the true meaning of love and giving. Beautifully, beautifully expressed in all ways.

  2. You will always have my support and love. With gratitude, Karen

  3. It's a keeper Karen! Love the story. The past is what makes us all love sleeping under quilts I think. Glad that it came back to you - and I hope that your family will continue use it with love

  4. Connections are so important when dementia clouds the mind and your story resonates. I hope the quilt gives you comfort now that it has come home.


Love comments! Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts with me.