One of the first developmental milestones any parent looks forward to is that first smile. Many of us beg for it by making goofy faces or noises, singing songs, reading books, giving endless kisses and hugs. In that moment, when their lips begin to crease upward, we feel recognized, validated and loved. Those feelings continuously resurface throughout parenthood as our children grow. Whether it is us making them smile or even an outsider, it brings us joy to know that our children are happy enough to smile.
Recently, my design endeavors brought me into contact with a very kind and wonderful woman. I uncovered her story and felt moved to take up her cause. My children are my life, without them I would flounder like a fish out of water. Their sadness, tears and struggles are my sadness, tears and struggles. I feel their pain very deeply just as I feel their joy within my own heart.
To me, it is important to share smiles not only when times are good, but even more so, when pain and struggles are at their greatest. This is why I decided to sew bead bags for Beads of Courage. This local organization provides innovative, arts-in-medicine supportive care programs for children coping with serious illness, their families and the health care providers who care for them. They bring smiles for children and their families when they need them most.
I am hoping that my tutorial will enable more people to create bead bags for this organization and, quite possibly, raise awareness of the need for more smiles, support and encouragement as these children fight the battle for their life against serious illness.
Bead Bag Tutorial by Tenderfeet Stitches
The hat in the photograph was made by Because of Leah