It has been several weeks since I sent out my last newsletter. During that time I spent about a month on the road teaching at quilt shows and promoting Free-Motion Mastery in a Month. The response so far has been incredibly positive — thank you!

The other reason I’ve been slow at getting a letter done is because I’ve been dealing with some health issues. It seems that while working on FMM30 I spent too much time sitting, which stretched out the ligaments in my back, which then allowed my left hip to dislocate slightly and that has precipitated a whole series of other problems, like nerve pain and spasms in my leg. It has been painful and VERY frustrating!

In the midst of all this, I discovered just how literally quilting can serve as therapy. When I quilt, my mind is focused on something other than the pain in my hip and I often forget about it altogether. I have always enjoyed quilting, but this takes it to another level. Knowing that I can sit down and quilt to put myself into a pain-free space lifts my mood; even just looking forward to it helps deal with the pain when I’m not in the studio. Quilting has become my happy place more than ever! (The quilt above is one of the quilts I’ve been working on during all of this — it’s a new sample for Free-Motion Mastery in a Month.

There has been another unexpected gift in this experience. Every time I have said to myself “This has got to get better” I find myself finishing the sentence with “I have mountains to climb!” One of the most frustrating things about this injury is the thought that I might not be well in time to enjoy hiking and kayaking this summer.  I have always loved the outdoors, but being unable to get out there made me realize how many things are on my “someday” list: hike the John Muir trail, raft the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon, visit Antarctica, see the Northern Lights, to name a few of the big ones, not to mention just the day hikes and weekend backpacks. What if suddenly I weren’t physically able any more, and all those “someday” things turned into “never” things?

I realized that “someday” needs to become “now” — or at least put a definitive date on the goal and start making a plan. Whether it’s making that special quilt or going on an outdoor adventure, I don’t want to end up with the regret of “I didn’t get around to it.”

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