Stitching My Life Into Words

In January before things went crazy I was online looking at cross stitch things.  I came across a wonderful little set of designs that I very much loved.

Here they are shown in a group.  I wanted to stitch them individually.  I thought they were so precious.  Each of the months has a virtue, at least one sheep and a heart.

Image result for sheep little virtues

As many of you know, I recently started cross stitch again.  These seemed small and perfect.   I broke my bank and ordered them.  They came and I was in love with them even more.

I called the needle shop in Osage and asked them to send the fabric for them.  Happily they are not done in specialty threads to no added cost there.  I was so excited to start stitching.

About then is when we found out that Kramer has lung cancer.  Just before we left for out first stay, I bundled everything up for the first month and took it with us a waiting room project.

This is the first one I stitched…

It so matched exactly how I was feeling.  I was hopeful. I had hope that everything would be okay.

I had a miserable time stitching it.  That border plus my lack of experience working on linen plus the weave of the fabric had me struggling.  Several times as Kramer saw me ripping out stitches he would say, “why do you keep working on that?”  That was easy for me to answer.  I am NOT giving up HOPE.  I will not give up on hoping that all of this will be okay.

It was then that I realized I was hoping, praying and stitching my life and feelings into this little piece.  I can’t tell you how many times I ripped out the stitches.  I can’t tell you how frustrated I felt with the stitching.  At times, I did feel like I wanted to give up on it but I refused.  It’s not perfect.  It doesn’t match the chart stitch by stitch…but it is together and looks good.

That is exactly what I hope for all of that is happening in my life right now.  I’m not looking for perfection but I am looking for something pieced together and okay.

I’m on to my next one in the series….LOVE.

I think this one is very appropriate for me right now too.  I’m going to have to love Kramer through this.  We’re going to have ups and downs as we travel down this road and loving him is the only way we’re going to make it through.

I also think LOVE is appropriate as I don’t believe I have ever felt so loved in my entire life.  Hubby feels that way too.  So many people have reached out, said a prayer, offered a kind word.  It’s unbelievable how wonderful the outpouring of support has been.

My next one after that is COURAGE.  Hmmm….I think that one might be appropriate by the time I get to that one as well.  Courage is something I’m sure we’ll need to find as the next steps in this come.

I’ll be stitching my way through all of this.  There are other gems that will be with me along the way….patience, peace, faith, simplicity….towards the end of the series is gratitude and joyfulness.  I can’t wait to get to that part of this journey in both stitching and our life trip.

Amazing, isn’t it, how this series of cross stitch came into my life just when I needed it most…just in time to “stitch my life into words”.

24 thoughts on “Stitching My Life Into Words

  1. Debbie Burgess

    That’s just beautiful, Jo. There really are no coincidences, you know. There clearly was a divine hand working when you “found” this handwork with the messages from the Shepherd to help you, before you were even aware you would soon need it the most.
    You, Kramer, your family, and his medical team remain in our prayers daily.

  2. Rose Koslap

    They are a great choice to help you keep going. I found the borders very relaxing once I finished one but I cheated and used aida (i just can’t see linen). I stitched Lizzie Kate’s My to Do List. While my daughter had her cancer surgery and the first couple of days in the hospital. Check it out as the words are great while your on this crazy journey. Later I passed it on to a friend of hers and his wife as they went through their cancer journey. After he lost his fight she told me it helped them both to look at it every morning. It ends with “just breath.” I’m planning to make it again for me but I’m saving it for my daughter’s next reconstruction surgery. Take care and let the stitches speak to you. You are all in my thoughts and prayers.
    Hugs
    Rose

  3. mary

    That is amazing how this particular project came in to your life. And, your first one is beautiful. I’m not surprised.

  4. Ellie

    Things don’t happen by accident! That sampler is perfect for your life as you and Kramer travel this road. Your family will continue to be in many prayers for this journey.

  5. Jean

    I love those cross stitch patterns and the story they tell about your life right now. I had to give up cross stitch years ago as I just couldn’t see up close as well. Sure loved doing it and I have lots of projects around my house to prove it. Continued hugs and prayers for Kramer, you, and your family. You are so strong!

  6. Carla

    What a community you have built around you, Jo. I read the comments others have left and think how much we all think alike. Sometimes I won’t comment because someone, or two, has expressed exactly my thought. Such is the case this morning. Debbie B said it just how I would have. Blessings for your day.

  7. annie

    Remarkable how the cross stitch came along at this time! Continued thoughts and prayers for you and Roger.

  8. Marianne

    This is Awesome. Beautiful stitching. There is always a reason for everything in your life.
    Prayers for your husband and you. Hugs

  9. Sheila

    I don’t believe in coincidences. God knew the time you would need to work on this and placed it in your life. Pray that you continue to see His quiet hand of love working through this difficult time… through your stitching, comments left on this blog, friends, family etc.

  10. Margie

    Linen has an learning curve but once you get used to it you won’t want to go back to any other kind. Hope is lovely.

  11. Cindy in NC

    I’ve had nine of the Sheep Virtues (because I have a nine-opening frame I want to use them in) for a while but kept putting off stitching them. I recently decided I would stretch myself a bit and participate in Maynia (so unlike me to have a bunch of starts) and that these would be nine if my 19 pieces. I will be praying for your family as I stitch these.

  12. Cindy E

    Those are lovely. They are so appropriate right now, not only for you, but for many others. Thanks for sharing. Positive thoughts and prayers for you, Kramer and your family.

  13. Joanne

    Having something to occupy your waiting time helps. Being able to “yell” at yourself for a mistake and ripping it out gives you a feeling of some control over something, and a feeling of accomplishment when your project is finished and looks so lovely. You can’t yell at anyone over the health issues and there is a lot of frustration in dealing with any system, no matter how good it is or how good the outcome. Learning how to communicate with the health personnel and system is a curve, at least for us.

  14. Jeri

    Carla took the words out of my mouth as she said ” sometimes I don’t comment because someone else, or two, said or expressed my exact my thought”. We all, I’m sure feel as if we are a part of your family we hurt when you hurt, celebrate with blessings with you, we worry right along with you and the list goes on. I used to cross stitch a lot, I too have a lot of work hanging on my walls. I’m glad Cindy said the name of these wall hangings as I think I just might buy these myself for road trips ect. As always Jo, my prayers are with you and your family.
    Jeri

  15. Susan the Farm Quilter

    Hope looks perfect to me! Definitely not a coincidence!! Praying for you all on this journey.

  16. Judy

    That is so amazing it seems that you will be working on each one of these when you need that particular word the most.

  17. Roxanne

    You chose a beautiful project to work on. I went down a big rabbit hole when I started looking at patterns by this designer. Wow. Agree with earlier comment that once you get used to linen it is so pretty you’ll like it best.

  18. Jane

    How beautifully expressed with your feelings and this projects synchronicity with what’s happening with Kramer and your lives.
    My husband and I were on a similarly stressful journey last year. The amount of love and support from family friends and the community was outstanding and incredible.
    May you both have strength, love, belief and faith as you go through this difficult part of your story.
    Remember the Lords Prayers as His will be done. Hugs and prayers.
    Jane
    Ps: my husband is terrific and survived despite the codes and received his heart transplant April,2018.

  19. Linda Hodges

    Jo, the cross stitch work is beautiful. What a lovely reminder of what you will have been through when you finally both come out of it successfully at the end and look back at the times you have travelled through the different emotions. Yes,the Lord will look after you as he has plans for us all but you know you have the love to support Kramer through all the challenges to come. My hubby has all kinds of health problems and was diagnosed with vascular dementia late last year. I am not looking forward to the downward spiral this horrible disease brings in our loved ones. But … chin up, we will cope I hope. Love to you all.

  20. Cindy F

    Love those patterns and yes, how perfect they are! Love your phrase “stitching my life into words.” They will be a loving reminder of how God gets us through the hard times. I haven’t cross-stitched in years but I looked up those patterns and will be looking to find them locally. Continued prayers for your family!

  21. Kathy D

    I love Little House Needlework designs. I am doing the 9-part Christmas series. Yes there can be a lot of “un-stitching” and the finished piece isn’t perfect, but neither are we humans! I pray you and Kramer get through this stronger.

  22. Darlynn Venne

    Girl, God gives us what we need to get through the hills and valleys of life. Love this stitchery~

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