The Time of the Dinosaur
|Before photos of the thin t-shirts.|
One of the dino t-shirts was pulled from my mother’s drawer, the famous pile of sentimentality in the form of worn and stained and faded t-shirts that I came upon in the summer... that same famous pile which is down to only three t-shirts now. The other dino t-shirt was brought back this past November from Costa Rica by my father. Really, one of the dinosaur t-shirts was his and one was hers but as their lives were so intricately entwined, it does justice to the over fifty years of togetherness to have my father’s dinosaur t-shirt become part of the Tekla quilt. It was time for the old boy to retire... no, not my father, but the dino t-shirt. My father, alive and invigorated, continues to evolve, not a dinosaur at all. And with this evolution, I dedicate the dinosaur blocks to him and to the great love and care he gave to our mother, especially through her devastatingly brief and aggressive illness.
|The four dinosaur blocks, two from each shirt.|
It takes a gentle man to see all that.
|Some of the famous painted t-shirts: parrot, dinosaur, and flower.|
A Ukrainian Thread
|Details of my embroidery attempts.|
Growing up in the prairie farmland of Saskatchewan, my mother’s first language was Ukrainian. My Baba, her mother, was a farmer and quilter and maker of some of the tastiest Ukrainian perogies known to the prairies. The simple and colourful threads and my attempt at fine, even stitches paid homage to both my Mother’s, my Baba’s, and the rest of the family’s Ukrainian culture and background. My embroidered stuffed garlic, although puckered and not entirely successful, reeks of Ukrainian prairie farm goodness.
|Hard working Baba and Geido with their children: late '50's and early '80's. Tekla in centre behind her mother.|
Limping, Walking, Downward Dog, and the Napoleonic Wars
How does it feel to walk again?.... a little sore, a little wobbly, scary on ice, and absolutely amazing. After almost four months of crutches and knee walkers and rolling chairs and whatever else I could do to keep off my fractured left foot, I walk with very little grace and agility but I walk... and each day is an improvement. Slowly moving my foot in ways that I will never take for granted again... that complete bend of the toes in downward facing dog is a yogic impossibility right now... soon, though, soon.
|Napoleon's infamous surgeon, Jacques Lisfranc, and his battlefield.|
And, yes, born in the right era, for sure.
|Dr. Johnny Lau, Superstar of Foot and Ankle, and his battlefield.|
Happy for a New Year
2012 will be a year to never forget. Losing my mother, breaking my foot, middle age hard upon me. Still, in the creases that have formed around my eyes, there are no truly sad stories. I am one of the lucky ones. 2012 saw children shot dead, women savagely raped, homes destroyed, fires burned, poverty, war, hatred, bigotry, violence. I know none of this. The cherished life of ease and entitlement that I have... living in this place, at this moment, is something I entirely take for granted. For it is in this luxury of time and space, as I sew and write, that I realize that I have not entirely lost my mother in so much as I have found her in myself. A rich life lived by her, has been gifted to me in my pampered and peaceful existence. Although my sadness is real, I know no unbearable pain.
Still... high hopes for 2013 to be a better year, if not for me, for the rest of this beautiful and pitiful human race.
|Three more blocks to go.|