Once I finished weeping at the sewing table, things started to look up.
Last night, having put the supper dishes up to soak, I realized I still needed crank out the traditional Birthday Shirt for Shani (who turned two today). It would have been easy enough to re-use the generic "Birthday Girl" shirt that--miraculously-- still fits her from last year, but I'm pretty sure that the guilt would've devoured me whole. So, at 10:30, out came the freezer paper, some fabulous blue polka dot fabric, and the fusible webbing. (Except, of course, that the fusible webbing was AWOL, so I fudged it with a thin coat of Fabric Fusion and went blithely about the business of Martha-ing.) The shirt was cute, with its polka dotted two, but something was missing. "Yo-yo's!" I exclaimed to Esti, who had stayed up to
I awoke with a raging migraine, still dizzy, and the vague feeling that I'd been flattened by a fleet of Harleys while I slept. I stumbled into the H o' C, half-finished shirt in hand, and sat down at the machine. Quietly, prayerfully, I wound the bobbin. Patiently, carefully, I threaded the machine. Inhaling deeply, I set my foot on the pedal and began to sew. Another deep breath as I unpicked the vile mess that had issued from my needle. And yet another, as I gaped at the hole in the shirt where my first stitches had been. (At this point I progressed from deep breaths to gasping sobs.)
I grabbed for the box of fabric paints and dug frenziedly till I'd found a color close enough to fool the uninitiated, and used the means most readily available to me to disguise the evidence of my woeful ineptitude. (We will not discuss, at this juncture, my inherent craft snobbery. We will say only that fabric paint and fun foam are tied for first place in my book as Icky Materials Resorted to Only in Times of Dire Need.) Teeth gritted, stomach churning, I made do with what I had. It wasn't what I'd hoped for. It didn't scream "I have a clever and nurturing mother who loves me enough to make me a birthday shirt." But it was done, and I was, too. I stashed the Birthday Shirt from Hell an top of the fridge to dry and went to wake the troops.
I know that my little birthday girl will never know the difference. I know that if she did, she wouldn't care. And I know, deep in my heart of hearts, that the sewing machine (and I) could use a little professional help.