Piping Foot Missing

I like to stitch fine corded piping to the edges of collars, button plackets, and sleeves of clothing for my girls. I have been known to add it as a subtle accent to a quilt top, when just a touch of color is needed between the main body of the quilt and the border, but I don’t want to add width or length.

Last night, I went to a workshop at my favorite quilt shop — the UFO workshop, where you bring your UnFinished Objects of any type sewing-related and work on them. Dinner is provided, and there is MUCH giggling and yapping and gossiping. I love these ladies down to my toes.

I got there a little late (I had it in my head that the workshop was from 6-10, which is a dosage length of ibuprofen, so just about perfect for my threshhold) while they were all eating. Since my diet is still pretty restricted, I had eaten at home, just in case she had lots of salad and things that would be tough for me to process. So, while they were all eating, I just pulled display quilts off the design walls and started slapping up the blocks of my Halloween quilt, which I started in April or May. Made a few more blocks so I’d have enough, and had fun playing.

One of the benefits of going to these workshops, aside from the food and the friendships and the design wall space, is that since we’re all working on different things, there are at least 9 more pairs of fresh eyes to look at what I’m doing and offer suggestions. Quilters are pretty polite people, only offering opinions when asked, but if I asked for opinions, I got them.

And once I had everything put together, the overwhelming opinion was that I needed to have a line of yellow-orange piping around the main quilt top, before the border. It just NEEDS it.

So. I got everything else done and ready to go, but by that point it was 10:15 and I was really starting to hurt, so I started to pack up — and was fussed at for leaving early. If I had started to make the bias strip to do the piping, I would have been there for at least another hour, with Mary breathing down my neck to get me to leave after the 11 o’clock end of the workshop. So I needed to come home.

Came home, and today I was setting up my sewing machine again, and I discovered that I’m missing my piping foot for my machine! This is the piece that holds the fabric in place while you sew, and the piping foot has a special groove that the cording fits into so that as you sew it everything stays totally straight. You can make corded piping without this foot, but it takes about twice as long to do it.

My mom borrowed it in August, I think, so that she could complete a quilt for the quilt show. I don’t remember if she gave it back to me. She doesn’t remember if she gave it back to me.

We’re both trying to find the stupid thing, because it’s a great little tool to have.

So. If I can’t find it, I guess she and I will go halfsies on another one. I think I remember her giving it back and me doing something idiotic like putting it in my pocket or the pocket of the diaper bag. Which is the kind of stupid thing I’d do when a kid was distracting me.

Maybe I should go clean out my purse. This thing is smaller than a quarter, almost that flat, and shiny metal. So it would be pretty easy to lose.

Heartbroken. I was going to finish that Halloween quilt top tonight. Curses, foiled again.


My attitude about certain things is colored by my experience. All of us live this way.

My pregnancy with Helen was easy. EASY. The only bad thing about it was that I had HORRIBLE heartburn at the very very end. When I was in the delivery room pushing, I could get 4 pushes out of every contraction, but I couldn’t push for that third of the four or I knew I’d throw up from the heartburn.

The instant of birth, however, was awful. Thank God I had an epidural and didn’t know just how bad it was until later. I had a 4th degree tear (misdiagnosed as a 3rd degree tear — because that’s what it looked like from the outside), complete with a torn anal muscle. Whee. A 4th degree tear means that my entire perineum tore. ALL. OF. IT.

Recovery sucked. It took me 5 weeks post-partum before I could sit on a hard chair without a doughnut cushion. And, of course, my muscular problems, which affected so much more in my life than anyone could ever possibly anticipate.

Then, Alice. At 6 weeks pregnant, I started bleeding. Had an ultrasound, and everything looked fine with the baby. 8 weeks, still looked fine, but still bleeding. Then I started in with morning sickness, but it was always at night. I puked my guts out EVERY night. Multiple times. So they put me on anti-nausea meds. And I was still bleeding. And then I got an AWFUL sinus infection. I lost weight the first trimester.

2nd trimester was great. I stopped bleeding at 14 weeks, and the nausea went away, too. I felt fantastic, sexy, and energized. I finished 5 (FIVE) quilts 2nd trimester. Had my big annual scrapbooking event in May, over Mother’s Day weekend. Stood up all weekend, making lunches and salads and snacks and running around getting stuff for people, etc. Sunday night, after it was all over, I was talking to Jerry and suddenly the pain was so great that I had to sit down. Turns out it was Alice, dropping into the birth canal.

On Tuesday, I lost the mucus plug and started having contractions. 28 weeks. On Wednesday I was in the hospital being monitored, because I had definitely had some preterm labor and they wanted to see what this baby was going to do. She was definitely head-down, engaged, and my cervix was softening. They put me on Brethine, the Drug From Hell, and told me to be as sedentary as possible until I got to 36 weeks. EIGHT WEEKS AWAY.

Here, Elaine, take this drug that makes you want to rip your hair out and leap out of your skin, and oh, yeah. Sit still. For eight weeks.

But I did it. I didn’t want to ever look back and think that I hadn’t done everything I could to make sure that Baby Alice had the best chance she could have. I did what the doctor told me to do, which included stopping labor one more time after that by lying on my left side and gunning water until the contractions stopped. I received steroid shots, and people came to play with Helen every day because I couldn’t chase my two-year-old around.

It made me so sad that I couldn’t enjoy my last two months with Helen alone the way I had planned to, but I just did my best. We read stories and snuggled on the couch and I’m sure she didn’t sustain any emotional damage from it. But I did. My heart ached to know that I couldn’t be the one out there pushing her in the swing because if I did, I’d have contractions. I couldn’t pick her up when she fell and bumped her head, because if I did, I’d have contractions. I couldn’t chase her around the circular floor plan of the main level of our house, because if I did, I’d have contractions.

But in the end, it was worth it. I got Alice. And when she was born, it was simple. Her birth was as simple as Helen’s pregnancy had been — less than 10 minutes of pushing, my belly collapsed, and there she was. And recovery was easy. I was sitting on a hard chair that weekend. I took one painkiller in the hospital because the nurse said I “needed” it. I refused the second one. I didn’t need it.

Every pregnancy is different. Every childbirth is different. And every mother responds in a totally different way. Some new moms bounce back really fast and are ready to party immediately. I was not. I didn’t have PPD, thankfully, but I didn’t dive headfirst back into my pre-parent life. I didn’t WANT that life anymore. Some people do. I did not. I still don’t. I don’t intend to force my views and expectations of life during pregnancy or post-partum on people, but I fear that I do. And I hate that.

Oh, well. My attitudes are colored by my experience. And my experience is that my children have brought far more joy to my life than they have ever taken from it. I don’t have a unit of measure large enough to even begin to describe what they have given to me.

Deleted the hidden post

It was causing people problems. And these are people that were meant to see it. Apparently, there are some commenting glitches on here, since we’ve made it harder to comment. People that shouldn’t get locked out of commenting are getting locked out.

If you are having difficulty commenting, email me. Address is epoplin AT gmail DOT com (just replace the all caps stuff with the appropriate punctuation mark and remove all spaces).