For details on the background behind this project series, please visit my Reclamation Project page.
Inspiration Song & Lyrics
Tell us all again
What you think we should be
What the answers are
What it is we can’t see
Tell us all again
How to do what you say
How to fall in line
How there’s no other way
You’re guilty all the same
Too sick to be ashamed
You want to point your finger
But there’s no one else to blame
Uncomfortable in My Own Skin: Reclamation Project IV
Afraid in public
Someone else’s behavior
Makes me feel guilty
The teacher of my preschool would scold or punish the entire class for one child’s misbehavior. I never understood why I got yelled at when Johnny picked his nose. I did not understand what I had to do with Suzy talking during quiet time. So I withdrew. During play time I sat alone in a corner working on crafts that other children did not like. Now that I am older and looking back, I wonder if my constant feelings of guilt and social anxiety are truly because it is my nature, or whether I was heavily influenced by that (toxic to me) environment.
1. the fact of having committed a specified or implied offense or crime.
“it is the duty of the prosecution to prove the prisoner’s guilt”
1. make (someone) feel guilty, especially in order to induce them to do something.
“Celeste had been guilted into going by her parents”
I have felt guilt for things that I was not responsible for, and I have felt guilty because of manipulation. What I am realizing is how my inaccurate feelings were keeping me locked behind invisible barriers and those feelings were manifesting into social anxiety and fear.
As I worked on this mini quilt, I thought about the differences between guilt and the feeling of being guilty. I want to break out of the confining bars that I have been placing around myself, so I began to recognize and look for patterns of guilt in my life. I should have no guilt about the behavior of the woman in line in front of me at the grocery store. I want to learn to breathe into those moments and find the quiet places of calm within myself.
Memory itself is a malleable thing. It would be nice if matters were always clear cut / black and white, but there are many shades of grey in my life and reality. The stark colors I chose for the quilt do a nice job of emphasizing this point. To continue the process of letting go of these feelings that do not serve me, I want to actively chose to remember the good that is in my life.
Realizing that I am responsible for myself and not responsible for the actions or behaviors of others is a huge step toward breaking out of the chains of guilt I have been placing upon myself. Have you felt guilt and responsibility for something unrelated to you? How did you process and move away from those feelings?
- Background and Backing: Kona White
- Binding: Kona Black
- 50wt Aurifil #2021 (white), #2692 (black), and #2610 (light blue grey)
- 12-inches wide
- 10.5-inches tall