The Patches in Our Quilts

I was listening to an old Tyler Perry acceptance speech that talked about his grandmother’s quilt and how at first he was ashamed of the quilt his grandmother had left him because it wasn’t appealing to the eye. He spoke about learning how to eventually appreciate the patches in his grandmother’s quilt because he had to come to realize that every patch that went into making the quilt she left him told a story of an area in her life and her quilt was the overall story of her life and she was leaving that to him. Initially he hadn’t even understood the enormity of the legacy she had left him. It made me think about whether or not we always understand the value of our patches.

I have often at different points in my life of course, felt shame for some tough lessons I had to learn the hard way. I’ve felt regret for opportunities that I have been too afraid to take and for decisions that I couldn’t take back.  Now that I have just crossed into my forties and I have spent the last few years growing both spiritually and mentally, I have come to believe that those moments in my life that I used to want to take back have made me who I am, for better or for worse.

While I would have loved not to have learned some of the lessons I’ve learned the hard way I wonder if I would have ever learned them otherwise.  Would I have ever been pushed forward without the hardships that I’ve had? If I hadn’t been knocked down so many times would I have developed the tenacity and persistence to be able to keep getting back up and pushing harder for what I want?

All of our experiences in life give us something to take into the next phase of our journeys’. They prepare us and toughen us up for what will undoubtedly be a bumpy road to the success you’re striving for.  The failures that you’ve had in life are not what you should dwell on because those failures mean that you actually tried. One thing is for certain and that is that you can’t succeed at anything without ever having tried. 

My mistakes are what have strengthened me and they are patches in my life’s quilt. I am very proud to sew them together and see just how far I’ve come even if I still have quite a ways to go.  I hope to be able to pass the quilt of my life down to my daughter so that she can then be able to know my story. Perhaps she will add her own patches to the quilt to pass down to her kids in the future.  Everyone needs to be proud of the patches that they have in their quilts and not just proud but understand the value in every single patch.

Until next time… #BeBold #BeFearless #BeGateful

Jimmetta Carpenter 



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