I finished my Mother's Day project stitching today. It will be in the mail in the morning to become part of the tote bag. As I stitched I was thinking of what took me so long to finish this. I picked it up because I received notice of the deadline. I HAD to finish it now. I wouldn't fail Linda Villar. It would be completed.
What had taken me so long? Why had I not completed it straight away? It is such a small piece of stitching. 1.7 inches long and about .4 inches tall. Miniscule. 12 letters with a single period after her middle initial. That's it. What could have possibly prevented me from finishing it in a more timely fashion?
Was it forgetfulness? No. I had the hoop with the partially stitched name on my dresser. I saw it almost every day. I thought of Linda J. Villar. Pictured her photo in my mind quite often since receiving her name and looking her up. It was definitely not forgetfulness.
Was it apathy? On the contrary. I felt myself sigh every day as I looked at her name staring back at me. I had completed "Linda J. V" and stopped but I saw the red of the finished letters and an anger would rise in me that I couldn't prevent. So, nope, not apathy either.
Was it inability or lack of time? Thinking back on the time that has passed since beginning this project, there have been plenty of times when I could have picked up the stitching to complete those last precious 5 letters. I almost picked it up many a time but then would just touch the fabric, say a prayer and leave it there unfinished and waiting once more. I've done needlework almost all my life and have the ability to complete this and I knew it would take 20 - 30 minutes to do. Not this either.
So, what exactly was IT that kept me from completing it until I absolutely had to? I wasn't sure at first but as I sat on my couch and slowly stitched the remaining 5 letters I thought about it. I stitched and thought of Linda. I stitched and thought of all the other names that will be on this tote. I stitched and thought of all the soldiers who will come to perish and not have there names on this tote. I prayed a little too.
Then I looked down and it was done. The last 5 letters. I added a little floral detail to the end of her name. Still all in red for her shed blood. But a little something else to honor her. Like flowers on a grave. And that was that. Done.
THEN I knew. I knew why I hadn't completed this earlier. Why I stared at it and left it on my dresser. Why I wouldn't finish the stitching without the prompt of a deadline. . . . . .
I didn't finish because completing her name was so final. Like her death. I wouldn't be stitching this anymore and her name would be on a tote that she should have never been on. Finishing it was like her dying all over again in my mind. A part of me deep down inside didn't want her name to be on the tote. Didn't want it to have to be on the tote. And yet, it needs to be. She is part of the loss in this war and she earned her place on the tote. I just didn't finish because I was wishing she hadn't had to.