Sacred Joy

I have gotten a little behind. The last several days have been filled with travel prep, travel, post-travel recovery, and throwing myself in the holiday vacation by getting together with friends and family–some of whom I haven’t seen in person in many years. It has been wonderful in a lot of ways, some of which I’m sure I won’t fully see until time has passed. Already, though, it’s clearly having an impact because it has opened up new answers to the most recent two Quest2015 prompts, starting with  Tuesday’s Sacred Joy prompt from Sunni Brown of the Doodle Revolution.

How could you make moments of joy a sacred priority in 2015? What forms will such moments take? Doodle, draw, photograph, or write your way into these questions and share your responses.

Doodle Quilting
Doodle Quilting

The first thing that came to me when I read this prompt was a piece of free-motion quilting I did while demoing a sit-down long arm quilting machine at Quilt Fiesta 2014, back in October. I’ve had a bit of a choppy relationship with free-motion. When I first got my new sewing machine, I ran out and took a free motion class, and promptly decided it wasn’t for me. Instead I focused on methodical walking-foot quilting over detailed quilting patterns drawn onto tracing paper and pinned to the top of the fabric. I loved the control, the accuracy, the way it came out exactly how I wanted it to. But this past summer something shifted in me after a discussion about embracing the feminine during a healing treatment. I was lying on the table getting worked on, and the next thing I knew, I realized that it was time to give free-motion another shot–but really more than that. It was time to fully embrace the free-flowing, serendipitous, spontaneous art. I took the next class offered by the local sewing center and was liberated. Two months later I found myself demoing the technique on a stunning machine and signing up to be the back-up teacher for the class I had taken.

As it turned out, that one decision opened up a world of others, including signing up for the 30 day blogging challenge that resulted in the Apocalypse Garden–a project I’d been dreaming of for years.

So, how can I make moments of joy a sacred priority in 2015?

  • By listening to what my gut and intuition whisper to me
  • By clearing mental, emotional, spiritual, and physical space to embrace these whispers
  • And finally, by going for it–by following the heart trails where they may lead, and being open to whatever they have to teach

Right now, that pull is taking the form of free-motion quilting and black & white photography. It is taking the form of coffee with distant friends. It is taking the form of integration of multiple disciplines around a single theme: resilience.

For decades I have focused on the strength part of resilience-training. It now feels like time to focus on flexibility, elasticity, ingenuity, and the power of improvisation. And it’s going to be fun. And filled with joy.