Wednesday, February 15, 2017

The Purple Heart

The purple heart is a medal of honor that is awarded to those who have been wounded or killed in service. For me, it is a symbol of bravery and courage at a level that is often so beyond oneself. When I started making the "Heart Quartet" block for my Penny Sampler quilt, somehow I kept coming back to that one heart just "needed" to be purple. My original direction was about the color, but then it became about this block telling my own personal story.

Only those who have picked up and left what was once called home, the people that they love and care for, and even the way of life, to live somewhere else, can truly comprehend the depth of what it means to do so. Many have told me that I am brave to have made such a step. From the inside, it doesn't always feel like that. It's true that my daily struggles and emotions of living and operating in a foreign country have often felt like a daily battle.

Before I knew it, I was making a block that represents me with my "boys". I am the one who is different from the rest, the purple heart, shining with courage... the courage that it took to follow my heart and leave everything behind. The map background fabric represents the long journey that I took to be with the man who completes me in every way.

There are several other blocks that I feel are very personal to me too, and tell more of my story. Perhaps it's quite fitting for such a quilt to find it's home in the room that I share with my family, and one of the most used rooms in the house. 

Do you have any personal stories of bravery and courage?
Linking up this week to Let's Bee Social.


  1. That is a lovely story. It warms my own heart when I hear of a quilt that holds such special meaning for someone. I totally agree with your courage representation. I only moved a couple of states away from everything I knew and it was very difficult and my friends always remind me how brave it was for me to do it. That quilt will put a smile on your face when you use it and will always remind you of your strength and bravery. :)

  2. You know I adore a good story told with fabric and this one is as beautiful as the block. I think, with so many stories, this may just end up being your favorite quilt ever. It's certainly shaping up to be quite beautiful, regardless!

    I have no story of my own bravery. I have never really felt especially brave (although there are a few instances that it may have looked that way to others...) but my Grandma moved from her home in a Chicago suburb to small town Arkansas when she was in her late 70's, and I always thought that was tremendously brave for her to leave her life and her home of over 40 years and all the family and friends she had to live near my mom.
    hugs, my sweet brave friend ~ Tracy

  3. Wunderschön, die Geschichte dazu ist auch wunderbar!
    Liebe Grüße

  4. What a wonderful way to honor your courage and the courage of others, I LOVE this. A big thank you to your husband for his service. All three of my sons enlisted after 9/11 and we all survived 9 deployments to war zones. One son (Marine) is out, one son (Navy) continues to serve and protect in a different way, and the Army son is a lifer and is stationed in Germany. Thank you for sharing this beautiful quilt and the concept behind it!

  5. I can see how very close this project is to your heart. Thanks for sharing your story with us.

  6. What a lovely way to represent your story, this quilt will be so personal, and therefore so precious! Like you I live in a country other than where I grew up, though it has never felt courageous to do so. It just "happened", one step after another, and many years and many places and countries later I now live here longer than I have ever lived anywhere, and I am abroad for longer than I have lived "at home"... only home is no longer what it was either! Now "home" is where my four boys are.

  7. I love your way of telling a story by working with fabric and creating a quilt all around it! It's a wonderful story you're sharing!

  8. @Anita,

    While I truly and deeply appreciate the courage that it takes to serve one’s country, I am not in Germany on account of my husband being in the service. I followed my heart to marry the German man that I fell in love with, and while my courage cannot even begin to compare to those who serve, or patiently wait for their loved ones back home, the step is not without its own leap of faith. Please pass on my grateful wishes to all three of your sons, who have chosen to step up to defend freedom. Thanks so much for stopping by and your lovely comment.

    Greetings from Northern Germany!



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