“Where’s my quilt?” Eighty-two year old Paula asked her daughter.
Betty got up from her sewing, “I don’t know.” She walked into her bedroom and took the quilt from the foot of her bed to her mother, “Why don’t you use this one?”
“That’s not my quilt.” Paula insisted.
Betty sighed; she knew which quilt her mother wanted. When Betty first entered the quilting world she’d made a simple patchwork quilt, with the patches being various sizes and coming from clothing in the family. She’d used flannel for both the backing and the batting and tied it. Over forty years old, the quilt was ragged and worn, but still her mother’s first choice.
“Ok, I’ll help you look.” After scouring the house, she found the quilt inside a pillow case tucked away in the linen closet.
“What’s it doing in there?” Paula asked.
“I don’t know Mom. I guess you put it there.”
“I know I did, but why?”
“I don’t know Mom. But you have it now. Do you want to lie down and rest for a bit?”
Paula made a face at her daughter, “Yes. Why do you think I wanted my quilt?”
Betty just shook her head and spread the quilt out for her mom.
Paula looked from the quilt to her daughter with a quizzical expression, “why did I forget where I put my quilt? And why did I put it in a pillowcase?”
Betty gave her mom a hug. “Mom, sometimes your brain just doesn’t remember some things. It’s okay.” She smiled at her mom, “and you did remember that quilts could be placed in a pillowcase to keep them clean and safe.”
Her mother nodded. “I know that’s how to store a quilt. But why would I store mine? I use it every day. I should remember things. They’re important.”
“If you could you would, it’s not your fault.”
“I remember these.” She pointed to the patches on the quilt.
Betty smiled. “You do?” She’d often wondered why her mother preferred this ragged and worn quilt to any of the newer ones she’d made.
Her mother pointed out a couple of the patches and told Betty little anecdotes about them. After a few minutes she tired herself and settled down to sleep.
Betty tucked the quilt around her mother and left the room. She smiled to herself, glad her mother had something that helped her keep her slippery hold on to the past.