May 4, 2017

DEAR FRIENDS...

It's going on 11pm here in Hoosierville, and I'm not sure how coherent this will be, but I have to at least  give it a shot.

Besides, try as I might, there just weren't any more Pinterest quotes about love and gratitude and friendship and generosity that could even come close to what I need to say, so my heart and my brain (tiny as it may be) lead me to the dining room table cockpit to a familiar place.

Nine years ago, when I started writing this here blog I did so out of a desperate need to belong.  I also thought it would be a fun way to keep a little diary of sorts of my stitching, and perhaps a chance to peep my head out of my shell a bit and engage with the world.

And then Miss Charlene pulled the USS Guild up beside me as I was floundering in that big dark lonely ocean and said "Kid!  Get your silly self in this boat!"

I am proud to say that THIS time I did.  And I kept on writing this silly little blog and I kept on going to all things Guild and I put that needle back in my hand and never looked back.

Your immediate acceptance of me and my quirks and my funny little dog and my cozy little house and my crazy little life was immediate and appreciated.  Your kind comments and lovely notes were medicine for what ailed me, and, most recently, your love...no other word for it...has been an awe-inspiring, mind-blowing, astonishing, gobsmacking, incredible blessing on my darkest darkest days.

For the last several hours I have been walking around stunned senseless by the generosity of strangers, thinking about the wonderfullness of it all and yet somehow fretting that there must have been a mistake someplace because nobody could possibly deserve to feel this...loved.

And it hits me.  There it is again.  That word.  And I start thinking about a conversation I had with Dr. Melfi this afternoon.  I told her that I've been thinking about God a lot lately, and I am convinced that She is an old African American woman.  And by old, I don't mean that in the aged sense, but rather in the ancient and timeless sense.  And She is regal...elegant...queenly in her demeanor.  And Her voice hits you right in the solar plexus and resonates so deep down inside yourself that you can't imagine what your life was like before She started speaking.  And Her words!  You hear words that are poetry and music all at once and they tell you everything you need to know. (Oh...and She has a wicked, devastatingly ironic, mind-stoppingly amazing sense of humor.)

(I guess she's kind of an amalgam of Mya Angelou, Toni Morrison, and Oprah all put together.)

And the thing God likes talking about more than anything is love.

Love in its purest form.  Love at its best and most complicated, and love at its simplest and most freely given.

So heaven, then, becomes whatever it is that you love the most.  It might be a big long table full of gorgeous food...with a white table cloth and pretty plates and cupcakes with sprikles in front of a beautiful lake, and everybody you ever loved is there enjoying the perfect breeze and the lovely sunshine.  Or maybe you loved books and Abraham Lincoln.  So that means that heaven for you might be sitting in a library talking novels with Abraham Lincoln.  Or maybe its playing golf with Arnold Palmer and your dad on a beautiful Sunday afternoon or having Taco Bell tacos with your mom in between stops at needlepoint shops.  Or, in my case, maybe heaven is sitting in your Happy Chair writing a silly little blog with a vat of dietCoke to the left and a sleeping Stewey to the right.

All this heaven talk makes me think about the movie Field of Dreams.  Remember when Ray's dad asks "Is this heaven?" and Ray says "No, it's Iowa" and then at the end of the movie the camera pans out and you see a line of headlights on cars filled with people coming to see the baseball field and save the farm?  I always cry at that moment, because I realize that there aren't just a few cars.  There aren't even just tens or hundreds of cars.  There are THOUSANDS  of cars.  All filled with people coming to save the farm.

A completely tortured reference, I know.  But this thing that's happening right now?  This thing where you are all lined up in your cars with your headlights on coming to save me?

It's overwhelming.

I've spent the better part of writing this here blog post trying to find words that could explain what's in this head of mine.  Thank you seems appropriate, and although two very small and often used words, they don't come close.  But I will say them to you all nonetheless and tell you that heaven might not be in Iowa, and it might not be in a library or on a golf course or even at Taco Bell, but if heaven is feeling love then it's right here in front of me and has been all along.

You and your kindness and support and encouragement have meant and do mean more to me than I can ever express.  I know that I will never be able to repay it, but I promise you that my life's mission is to make sure that somebody will know what this feels like too.

Thank you.

Thank you.

Thank you.

With my whole heart,
Coni
The very humbled, incredibly grateful, impossibly loved Spinster Stitcher.

36 comments:

  1. Oh my! I can barely see the screen through my tears. Coni, I still think you don't know how deeply you have touched us through your writings. I have had several email convos with folks looking for other ways to be involved. Thank you for sharing your life with us and allowing us to share with you.

    Susan (aka Anonymous) I will really have to figure out how to sign in!

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    1. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to help Coni! By setting up the fund (I'm assuming it was you Anonymous Susan) you have provided a way for us to say thank you to Coni for all she has given us through the years. I have checked her donation total several times a day and my husband is asking me now how much it is!
      Thank you again and again!
      Another Anonymous Susan

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  2. You're amazing! You give such a gift with each post. We love you so. Oh, and when your life settles down, and you and your new kidney have some time and energy, I think it might be a great idea for you to settle into your cockpit and write a book. I was originally imagining you as a humorous fiction writer, but after this post there's no doubt you could write inspirational books too. Love.

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  3. Hi Coni: Just read your latest post. Heaven is real. Love is real. You are loved by many because a lovely lady decided to start a blog and has brought hundreds of people joy, and laughter. One of the things I have said to my two sons while growing up is that they never know what they may say to someone can be have a ripple affect. Just a small kindness in saying something nice, giving a compliment, holding open a door, picking up something for a person, it is small but it is a kindness. Well the ripple affect you have created is coming back to you. You are in need and your fellow stitchers are loving you back. We all hope the best for you and I will pray for you daily. You keep resting, give a kiss to Bosco. Have a restful sleep in the big girls bed tonight. Cindy in norther Illinois

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  4. I know this really isn't my business, but I was thinking today that with your writing talent, that Stewey's adventures might make good children's books. The stories should also include his cousin Bosco, of course. They could be so beautifully illustrated too.

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    1. Yes! I have thought that many times - a book. Do it, Coni! ❤️

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  5. πŸ‘†πŸ‘†πŸ‘†What she said!! ❤

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  6. Oh sweetie, it's us who should be thanking you! As for me, it was chance that brought me here, but you that drew me in, with your humor, strength, warmth and sweet Stewey. You are the bee's knees and the cat's meow all rolled into one sweet friend, and I don't say that lightly. I believe I speak for many when I say that it would be so darn boring if I didn't have your wonderful thoughts and annectdotes...yours is the first blog I look for when I sign on. So, Thank you, Coni for building it, because here we are headlights and all. Hugs kid <3

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  7. Thank you,I have not been reading your blog for very long, I feel we think alike in many ways. You have pulled me up from the black hole a number of times. You inspire me by your courage and give me hope.You are worth so much to so many. May you feel the grace of God as you continental on your journey.

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  8. Coni dear, as you described that black woman of wisdom with the voice that reaches the core of your being, all
    I could envision was the great Jesse Norman and if you want to reiterate that impression, find her rendition of
    Balm in Gilead on U-Tube and feel your being tingle... for
    she embodies a "knowing" of life with her voice and demeanor. I echo all others who urge you to take your
    God-given skill with words to write a book of inspiration as only you could.... what a legacy to add to the one
    you have already created..... love you, precious one.

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  9. There you are! I knew you were in there. Just lost a bit in the mire and muck of everyday crap we all get handed. I was always taught to be careful for what you sow you reap and it comes back to you in far more abundance than what you sent out. This is living proof that statement is true. You are now receiving all the love you have passed around to us. - right back atcha girl!! We all are here for you.

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  10. Anytime
    (((((((((((((((((BIG HUGS)))))))))))))))
    Marilyn

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  11. Coni, we love you too. ♥ Hugs & Prayers, Cathryn

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  12. You're worth every penny!!!!!!!!!!! Xxxooo

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  13. Coni - I love your description of God. As I read it, the words really resonated with me. Maybe like Heaven, God will appear to us in the form that best suits us. God can after all, do all things.

    And I too think you could write a darling book about Stewie and his (mis)adventures. I always loved his posts and how tolerant he was of you, his Mot-her.

    So hugs Girlie. Know that you are loved by many and we are ALL pulling for you. We have faith in you, and we know that you can pull through all this craziness. I suspect Stewie is in Heaven on a big soft pillow with that tail going ninety miles an hour while he watches over you. And I suspect there is that little grin on his silly little face, too.

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  14. Wonderful blog entry. You have brought so much to our lives. Thanks for being you and sharing your thoughts, ideas, and stitching with us. Here's to you!
    P. S. I think you are correct about heaven and God!

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  15. A beautiful tribute to all and once again it shows how special you really are. Thank you!

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  16. Silly Spinster, of course we love you. You are One of Us.

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  17. Coni, you and your blog are a blessing to all of us who stop by. You have made us smile and giggle when we need it, shared your projects and life, and given us much to think about. You are one strong and mighty fine gal. Thinking of you!

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  18. We're with you and we love you!

    MaryO1230

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  19. You are loved πŸ’–
    Write
    Blessings,
    Baa
    N. Fl

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  20. Dear Coni, I could just feel your heart and love in every word. You are loved by so many and such a bright light in our lives. So, thank you for being you and the great blessing that you are to us.

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  21. Oh Coni, you are so loved...you have made me laugh and cry, have lifted my spirits on dark days and given me perspective when I needed it. I know I speak for all of us when I say you deserve every cent, every hug and every ounce of love we can send to you. xoxoxo

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  22. Oh Coni .. you are so loved. And you've brought me to tears once again...good loving tears. We've got your back !! Much ❤️ ❤️❤️❤️

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  23. Just.so. beautiful. Pure Coni heartfelt thoughts that so many of us can identify with. Thank you Coni, oxox Debbie in IL

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  24. Perfect words. Thank you for all you do, for all of us, and making our world a loving community. Sharing is caring. We love you and share your joys, trials, suffering and happiness with you. Every step along the way.

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  25. This brought tears to my eyes are I'm going through a small rough patch right now. Holding your hand in absentia:)

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  26. Goodness, so beautifully put, esp. the headlights coming to save. Well you are the bulbs in those headlights! Have you ever considered writing as a vocation? There are so many musing-type books about knitting, you could be (finally) the voice of our craft and its bonding powers. So glad to hear of the alcove! Peace is a wonderful feeling....

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  27. May I suggest one addition to all of the versions of heaven? A 24-hour, all-you-can-eat buffet for all of our furry friends, Calories don't count. Now that I think about it, my human friends in heaven would like a similar buffet. Just a silly thought, in hopes you'll smile Coni. Yes you are loved and cherished.

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  28. I love your description of God!

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  29. Love this. Much love to you, stitchy friend, and many prayers for you. When I first found your blog there was one post that had me falling down laughing, tears rolling out of my eyes! I bet I read that post 50 times, at work and at home, just to have a good laugh. I can still think about that darn post and laugh out loud! Yes, You and your writing have a greater impact than you may realize. I hope it continues to be that cathartic for you. And, I'll jump on that chidrens book bandwagon, too!
    Prayers.

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  30. For me, Heaven will be a place of constant joy and peace; the world as we know it now will not touch us or pull us down. It will always be a happy place with those we love. So thankful to know you and I always look forward to your posts. Blessings to you..............

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  31. Another teary blog reader here! I love, love, love your vision of God! None of us know what He/She looks like and you may just have hit the nail on the head! Sometimes LOVE and THANK YOU are enough.

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  32. I am grateful to you. I find your blog inspiring, funny, humbling and makes me feel that I belong.

    With much love and lots of hugs x

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  33. You are such a treasure to the stitching community. And not to take away from anyone else's blogs because I do love every one I have found but yours is truly special just as you are yourself and it is so nice to be able to help someone you love. xo

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