shanikka's quilt

UnaSpenser suffers from autoimmune and neurologic problems as a result of Lyme Disease.  This has had a terrible impact on her life, to the point where she now needs weekly IV treatment.  Like other Lyme sufferers, she has had problems in the past getting treatment at all -- and this has made her situation worse.  She wrote this in 2009:

If the system did not rely on a test that is 55% inaccurate and refuse to pay for further testing, even so, I would have been diagnosed 2 years earlier than I was. Had I not gone so long untreated, putting an enormous strain on my immune system, I would not have acquired the two auto-immune disorders that ensued. Even if I had been diagnosed, though, there is a chance I would not have been allowed the full treatment I needed. Still, here I am with very debilitating illnesses, a person who was damn healthy for 42 years. Who led a healthy lifestyle as an amateur athlete, a healthy eater, a non-drinker. I did not do anything that put me at greater risk than normal. I have had health insurance all my life.

Still, I am denied care. I am denied because the insurance companies will hire doctors who are willing to give them any justification for denying testing or treatment, regardless of patient need, or patient health, or patient pain or growing risk of death.

You can read more about UnaSpenser's experiences with Lyme in a blog she wrote in 2009 and 2010.

If you would like to read more about Lyme Disease, here are some links that UnaSpenser sent to me.

Columbia University Medical Center's website on Lyme
CDC's guidelines on Lyme
International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society

Timaeus' quilt, detail

What is a community quilt?  It is a quilt bearing messages from you, transcribed by me in archival ink on muslin.  It is a quilt full of color, love, support, and the warmth of friendship.  Whenever UnaSpenser feels unwell or low, she can wrap herself in your love and know she is not alone.  It is community in a beautiful blanket.

smarx's quilt, detail

It takes time and material to make a community quilt.  If you would like to help with UnaSpenser's, here is a PayPal link -- or message me for an address if you prefer a check.  $15/message is suggested but some give more to cover the messages of those who cannot afford to donate.  It's entirely up to you -- we are grateful for your support and welcome all messages.  We are currently $85 and 3 messages short on this quilt.

FloridaSNMOM's quilt, detail

These people have left messages for UnaSpenser so far:

1.    left rev
2.    Kitsap River
3.    broths
4.    MsSpentyouth
5.    One Pissed Off Liberal
6.    Otteray Scribe
7.    weck
8.    triciawyse
9.    jwinIL14
10.    Ellinorianne
11.    Aji
12.    BFSkinner
13.    Louisiana 1976
14.    Chacounne
15.    cfk in the Thumb of Michigan
16.    Zen Trainer
17.    MsGrin
18.    rserven
19.    BlackSheep1
20.    2thanks
21.    Pam from Calif
22.    churchylafemme
23.    Bugsby
24.    Marsanges
25.    ramara
26.    scamperdo
27.    Bill in Portland Maine and CommonSenseMainer  
28.    Northsylvania
29.    petral
30.    Vetwife
31.    racheltracks
32.    lisa lockwood
33.    Regina in a Sears Kit House

smarx's quilt, showing backing

Need inspiration?  Here are a few of UnaSpenser's messages:

Little things do a lot. Your activism may be the action of one person, but it affects many. I have admired few people I know more than when you led women in headscarves over to the conservatives' conference hotel as a protest. Your strength and continued work inspires me. May you always have all that you need to carry it forward.  Kitsap River

Quilted with love for UnaSpenser. Your gifts of compassion, intelligence, and community building have kept many of us warmly embraced, and we hold you close in thanks for all you've given.  MsSpentyouth

Hang in there Una, my friend. Best wishes for peace and healing, and thanks very much for your activism. Much love and many blessings.  One Pissed Off Liberal

UnaSpenser, please know that when you wrap yourself up in this quilt that you are wrapping yourself up in the power of the purr and know that all the pooties and woozles are with you!  triciawyse

Dear Friend, You are one of my sheros, always bringing our attention to, and witnessing for, those who have been "othered", or lost, or left behind, or forgotten. I will never forget watching you go toe to toe with Andrew Breitbart, protecting those who needed protecting, and standing up to him. May this quilt remind you always of the love you are surrounded with. Love and Hugs, Heather  (Chacounne)

You were first voice of understanding and experience when my diagnosis popped out of nowhere - a blessing to me both then and now.  You give so much to others, may the blessings you receive reflect all you share with so many.  MsGrin

Clytemnestra's quilt, showing backing

These community quilts have been completed to date:

1. othniel (cellulitis and ensuing complications, RIP)
2. exmearden (cancer of heart and lung, RIP)
3. MsSpentyouth (brain tumor)
4. Moe99 (lung cancer, RIP)
5. Michelle Caudle (ovarian cancer, RIP)
6. BFSkinner (lupus)
7. Kitsap River (long wait for kidney donor that ended 2/18/11)
8. Frederick Clarkson (blood clots)
9. Dreaming of Better Days (lymphoma)
10. one bite at a time (lost house and belongings to fire)
11. Timroff (cellulitis)
12. Sol Fed Joe (multiple cancers and health problems)
13. Brubs (AIDS, immune reconstitution syndrome)
14. rserven (gall bladder infection with dangerous complications)
15. grndrush (brain tumor, RIP)
16. ImpeachKingBushII (needs liver transplant)
17. andsarahtoo (lupus)
18. Frank Cocozzelli (muscular dystrophy)
19. luvsathoroughbred (breast cancer)
20. Predictor (stroke and HIV)
21. Austex54 (caretaker to othniel)
22. Theodore Olbermann, RIP
23. cskendrick (antibiotic resistant infection)
24. Keith Olbermann (caregiver to father)
25. Juan (cancer)
26. Ana (a young horse belonging to Juan, hit by truck)
27. MA Liberal’s mother (Alzheimer’s)
28. Charles CurtisStanley (caretaker to Kitsap River)
29. Lorikeet (cervical cancer)
30. Dr. Lori (metastatic cancer)
31. ulookarmless (cancer, heart condition, stroke, RIP)
32. riverlover (caregiver to husband suffering from liver failure, now widowed)
33. Melody Townsel (caregiver to dying father, now deceased)
34. dadanation (AIDS)
35. Dr. William F. Harrison (leukemia, RIP)
36. Larry Bailey (sudden loss of partner to heart attack)
37. ramara (adopted son with fetal alcohol syndrome)
38. Noor B (herniated disk from car accident)
39. Louisiana 1976 (fibromyalgia, severe arthritis, depression)
40. stumpy (MS, stroke, RIP)
41. bleeding heart's niece (cancer, RIP)
42. escapee (failure of corneal surgery)
43. SarahLee (lymphoma, Lyme Disease)
44. Bustergirl (ovarian cancer)
45. mimi's niece (cancer, RIP)
46. ZenTrainer (breast cancer)
47. Miss Blue (severe injury to shoulder, anxiety over coverage for surgery)
48. Granny Doc (bladder cancer, RIP)
49. mango (heart attack)
50. nudger (ovarian cancer, RIP)
51. DaNang65 (heart condition)
52. Lt. Choi (exhaustion)
53. Nurse Kelley (spinal stenosis)
54. Ben Masel (lung cancer, RIP)
55. Otterary Scribe (caregiver, grieving grandfather, grieving widower)
56. Aji (autoimmune diseases incl. fibromyalgia, inflammatory arthritis, & Chronic Epstein-Barr Virus Syndrome)
57. JaxDem (suddenly widowed)
58. DavidW (AIDS and other undiagnosed illness)
59. Jester the Marine (facing amputation of leg)
60. peregrine kate (endometrial cancer)
61. mimi (grief due to family illnesses)
62. alliedoc (endometrial cancer, RIP)
63. labwitchy (diffuse scleroderma)
64. Daily Kos (celebrating community)
65. belinda ridgewood (sudden loss of her mother)
66. princesspat (blood clots, deep vein thrombosis)
67. Scott Olsen (severe head injury)
68. SensibleShoes (caring for sister with brain cancer)
69. Joanna (cancer)
70. cany (grieving caretaker of mother with dementia)
71. Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse (breast cancer)
72. Scottie Thomaston (intense chronic pain from spine, kidney stones)
73. paradise50 (throat cancer)
74. woodtick (caregiver to mother with Alzheimer's)
75. BeninSC (mulitple fractures from bicycle accident)
76. Adrian (colon cancer)
77. Smoh (breast cancer, stroke, depression)
78. slksfca (sudden onset of arthritis requiring hip replacement)
79. arizonablue (grief and exhaustion)
80. Lorikeet (grieving widow - this quilt was a gift from the Rescue Rangers)
81. remembrance (breast cancer) and Glen the Plumber (her caregiver)
82. MassHarry (colon cancer)
83. Regina in a Sears Kit House (severe immune problems from Lyme Disease)
84. nannyboz (grief for father, crippling back pain requiring surgery)
85. raina (grief)
86. earicicle (breast cancer)
87. AntKat (cancers of the throat, RIP)
88. Alma (breast cancer)
89. DarkHawk98 (lung cancer)
90. llbear (brittle diabetic)
91. michelewin (grief and trauma)
92. Dave in Northridge (grieving widower)
93. racheltracks (complications from knee surgery)
94. Ebby (grief and stress)
95. Leaves on the Current (cancer)
96. Carol in San Antonio (cancer)
97. commonmass (grieving widower)
98. Clytemnestra (DES daughter, debilitating abdominal pain and bleeding)
99. Oke (survived life threatening pulmonary infection, COPD, depression)
100. shanikka (diverticulitis, intestinal abscess and life threatening infection)
101. Serpents Choice (grief)
102. smarx (caregiver to mother who has dementia)
103. FloridaSNMOM (COPD, chronic pain, anxiety over access to health care)
104. Timaeus (enormous hernia requiring major surgery)

See also these three posts about the community quilt project:

KosAbility: A Virtual Quilt for Sara and Ann, from Community Quilt recipients

We Have Something to Say to YOU, Sara R and winglion!

Community Quilt FlashMob Brightens up NN13

Oke's quilt

These quilts are planned:

LorelieHI (PTSD, reversals of fortune, depression, homelessness)
Vetwife (caregiver to multiple family members)
MA Liberal (caretaker to her mother who has dementia)
Ellinorianne (rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia)
MsGrin (life long heart problems requiring multiple surgeries)

commonmass' quilt


Boots says, "Thank you for supporting community quilts!"


Originally posted to Sara R on Tue Sep 03, 2013 at 05:01 PM PDT.

Also republished by Community Quilt Project, DKOMA, Positive Intention and Lovingkindness, Street Prophets , and PWB Peeps.

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