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人生密密缝:奶奶的百纳被

更新时间:2018-5-18 20:30:49 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

“At the age of 11, I started working for the very first time as a cleaning lady with my grandparents.”
人生密密缝:奶奶的百纳被

The way the light shined on her skin as she sewed the quilt emphasized the details of every wrinkle, burn and cut. While she completed the overcast stitch, the thimble on her index finger protected her from the needle pokes. She wore rings on every finger of her right hand, but on her left she only wore her wedding ring. The rings drew the attention away from her age and scars to her cherished possessions.

她坐在阳光下缝百衲被时,光线让她皮肤上的每个皱纹、灼伤和割痕显得特别突出。她一针一针地缝着边,食指上的顶针保护着其他手指免遭针扎。虽然她右手的每个指头上都戴着戒指,但左手只有一个指头带着她的结婚戒指。这些戒指把人们的注意力从她的年龄和伤痕转移到她珍爱的东西上。

My grandmother’s rings had not only been stolen by her son, my father, but she was constantly in the state of fear that he would steal from her once again. When my father was incarcerated, she wore her rings every day of the week; however, when he was home, her hands were bare. As it became increasingly common over time, she learned to hide her treasures in a jewelry box under her bed.

奶奶的戒指不仅被她的儿子、我的父亲多次偷走,而且她时时刻刻处于担心状态,怕他会再偷她的东西。我父亲被关在监狱里时,她一星期每天都戴着戒指;但他在家时,她手上光秃秃的。随着时间的推移,这已变得越来越常见,她学会了把值钱的东西藏在她床底下的珠宝盒里。

As a small child, I watched my grandmother’s hands move in an inward and outward motion, noticing her rhythm. This rhythm was like the cha-cha music I heard every Sunday when I went with her to the pulga, the flea market. Every week, she bargained on the vendor’s products and brought home “unnecessary necessities”; luckily, some weeks it just happened to be thread and new sewing outlines. As my grandma sewed my outfits for school, I was always trying to complete the outline of La Rosa de Guadalupe just so I could impress her. I would sing along to her favorite Prince Royce songs, use the same color of thread as her and try to go at the same cha-cha.

小时候,我观察过奶奶的手向内、向外来回不断的动作,注意到她的节奏。这种节奏就像每个星期日我和她一起去逛跳蚤市场时听到的恰恰舞音乐。每星期,她都对卖主的产品讨价还价,把“不需要的必需品”带回家;幸运的是,有些星期买来的东西碰巧是线和新的衣服样子。当奶奶给我缝上学穿的衣服时,我总是在试图按照电视剧La Rosa de Guadalupe里的衣服样子缝件什么,我那是做给她看的。我会边听边唱她最喜欢的罗西王子(Prince Royce)歌曲,用与她用的颜色一样的线,并试着用同样的恰恰舞节奏。

With my father incarcerated, the women in my family went to work. At the age of 11, I started working for the very first time as a cleaning lady with my grandparents. Even though I wanted to help my family, I was ashamed to be a cleaning lady. I argued with my mother against living a life like that, a life in which I gave up my childhood for my family’s stability. After being called “malagradecida” — ungrateful — several times, my grandmother reacquainted me with the idea that “todas las cosas buenas vienen a los que esperan” — all good things come to those who wait. Sewing was no longer a hobby, but a necessity, when it came to making my own apron, seaming together rags and pushing for a better future for my family. My grandmother, too, had to put down her quilt and go to work, but she never complained.

因为父亲被关进监狱,我家里的女性都得去打工。11岁时,我第一次开始工作,和祖父母一起当起了清洁工。虽然我想帮助我的家人,但对当一名清洁女工我感到羞愧。我和母亲争吵过,我不想过这样的生活,不想为了家庭的稳定而放弃我的童年。家人好几次说我“忘恩负义”——奶奶也多次用“一切好事都只会发生在那些耐心等待的人身上”这句话来教育我。缝纫不再是一种爱好,而是成了一件必需做的事情,我给自己缝制围裙,把布片缝在一起做抹布,为我的家庭争取更美好的未来。奶奶也不得不放下百衲被去工作,但她从不抱怨。

In recent years, my grandmother has become increasingly ill, so I took her unfinished quilt to my home, planning to complete it. My grandmother did not choose to leave this project unfinished; her age and constant contribution to her family through work did not allow her to. Often, obstacles have not only redesigned my course, but have changed my perspective and allowed for me to see greater and better things present within my life. The progression of each patch depicts the instability present within my family. However, when you put all these patches together as one, you have a quilt with several seams and reinforcements keeping it together to depict the obstacles we have faced and have overcome to show resilience.

最近几年,奶奶的病越来越重,所以我把她未完成的百衲被带回家,打算把它做完。让这个项目半途而废不是奶奶的选择;她的年龄、以及她为家庭不停地做贡献让她无法完成这个百衲被。障碍不仅经常让我重新设计人生道路,而且改变了我的视角,让我看到了生活中更大、更美好的东西。百衲被是一块一块拼缝起来的,每块布都代表着我的家庭内部的不稳定。然而,当你把所有这些布块缝成一件完整东西时,你就有了一个用多条接缝连接起来、经过多次加固的百衲被,就像是描绘了我们曾经面临并克服了诸多障碍后所展示的韧性。

Now, when she visits our home, as she reaches for her glasses and pushes her walker away from the table, my grandmother asks me to bring her the quilt. The jeweled hands that were once accustomed to constant stitching are now bare, and the scars are hidden under every wrinkle. With a strong grip on the quilt, my grandmother signals me to get her sewing basket that sits in the corner collecting dust. She runs her hands over the patches one last time and finds an unfinished seam. She smiles and says, “Cerrar la costura y hacer una colcha de su propio” — close the seam and make a quilt of your own.

现在,奶奶来到我们家时,她一边伸手去拿眼镜,把自己的助步器从桌子傍边推开,一边叫我把百衲被拿给她。曾经习惯了不停地缝纫、带满了戒指的手现在光秃秃的,手上的伤疤也被皱纹隐藏了起来。奶奶紧紧地抓着被子,向我示意,让我把她的缝纫篮子拿过来,那个放在屋子角落里的篮子上盖满了灰尘。她的手从每个布块摸过,对被子进行着最后的仔细检查,找到了一条没完全缝好的接缝。她笑着说:“把这个缝儿缝起来,然后做一床你自己的百衲被。”

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