Thursday, January 19, 2012

For a Friend

I guess first I can start with our recent drama - besides the stomach flu claiming a second victim (Rob) - Connor's school and several others went through a lockdown on Tuesday. Someone reported seeing a male with a weapon walking near the regional high school, and as a precaution the closest schools went to Code Blue. In case you're unfamiliar with the process, a Code Blue requires that all doors (building and classroom) be locked, students must sit on the floor away from doors and windows, classroom windows are covered, and communication is limited. Generally a Code Blue drill lasts 20 minutes. Tuesday's Code Blue lasted 4 hours, and for the first 3 students were unable to use bathrooms, eat, or drink. All male students were searched. Metal detectors were used. And, to the terror of many kids, they were told that they were being searched because there was a man with a gun.

For a child with autism and anxiety issues, the obsessive side takes over - Connor has been calming himself by scripting (CONSTANTLY) and asking the same questions repeatedly. Don't get me wrong - I absolutely appreciate the work of the police & the school staff in keeping the kids safe. It's just difficult to explain things in a way that gets through the fear, and the fear is lasting much longer than I thought it would. In the days since, the police have stated that the report was never confirmed, and that searches were performed as a precaution. That's been some comfort for Connor, but being afraid for so many hours - and being searched! - will have an impact on a lot of kids, not just mine.

And now for something completely different: 

three pounds of yarn

approximately 42 hours

27, 641 stitches
Every single stitch infused with love for my friend.


Emily Keaton said...

That blanket is absolutely beautiful, Jessi! I think I know who it must be for, and I must say that if that doesn't impress with your love and concern, I don't know what would. The color is gorgeous, and so is the design. You are an amazing artist, Jessi, and a caring friend!!

Gosh, Connor's Code Blue situation sounds scary, indeed. Sounds like just a little too much drama at your house this week! I hope that things are super boring for you the rest of the week and weekend, and that Connor's fear subsides with time. Sending you hugs!!!

Jingle said...

Wow! I have been in lock downs with students (when I used to teach) and we never had the kids searched! And the reports WERE confirmed! That is scary! I'm sorry your child had to go through that. Your blanket is AMAZING! What an incredible gift!

walchowDesign said...

I'm so sorry to hear about the "code blue" at Connor's school, Jessi! It must have been terrifying experience for all students, teachers and parents! I sincerely hope that Connor will get over with it slowly. btw, doesn't the school provide "cooling off" therapy to kids!

Your blanket is so awesome and your friend is so lucky, Jessi!

Karin Ã…kesdotter said...

Poor Connor - and all the other children - and teachers too of course - I read your story with horror - so scary.

Jenny said...

OMG...I can't imagine how scary that must have been for any child let alone one with Autism!!! I hope Connor's not scared by it permanently.
So much work has gone into the's gorgeous :)
Jenny x

Jen W. said...

Poor Connor! I'd be terrified too! I hope you're able to help settle his fears but I know that's something that would have stuck with me for a while as a kid!
As for that gorgeous blanket - wow!! It's stunning and your friend is going to love it. Any crafty stuff you don't do? :)

Ulina / Apricot Bubbles said...

Hi Jessi,
it was both interesting and terrifying to read about this Code Blue - we don´t know anything similar here in Austria.
I´m so sorry for Connor, because he had to endure that... I hope he will feel better in a while!!
Your blanket is so gorgeous - what a lot of work - but it was obviously worth every minute spent on this project!
Have a nice weekend, Jessi!

Susan Raihala said...

How scary to have the code blue and how sad that Connor is still struggling to deal with the aftermath! So sorry that happened. I hope he finds his equilibrium soon.

The blanket is gorgeous! Your friend will feel so blessed!

Wendy ten Hove said...

Hi Jessi,
What a story that is!! I do agree that they should be careful when there are alarms about a man with a gun, but they should also take in account that this is terrifying for the kids! And carefully choose words for explaining what happens! But then again, if there really was a man with a gun wanting to do something awful, this is the better option, but it's soooo difficult! I do wish, wish, wish for Connor that he will feel comfortable again soon and also for the other kids! All the best for you!
Your blanket is beautiful!!! Love it!! Wauw, that was such a project for you!! But with an amazing result, surely your friend will enjoy that for a long, long time!!!
Hugs, Wendy

Allison Rankin said...

Love your pretty blanket! You can send it my way (snort!).

We had a lockdown at the kids' elementary school a few weeks back (a man had holed himself in a house with a gun due to marital strife). It was a couple blocks away from the school yet the kids were still kept in for three hours (long after the bell had rung)...crazy. And I can just imagine what that would do to someone with autism (my BF's stepson has it). Feel for you!

Emily Leiphart said...

Oh, I'm so sorry about the flu and especially Connor having to go through the Code Blue situation. Wow, what a fright that must be. I hope the fear doesn't last too long and you are able to find a way to reassure him that he'll be safe.

Your quilt is stunning! Even though it's all one colour, I'm loving the amazing textures and patterns on it. Lovely work, Jessi!

Inkyfingers said...

Poor Connor - I hope he is settling down a bit as time goes on.
The quilt is absolutley amazing. I cannot believe how uniform your bobbles are on the hearts. Your lucky friend is going to love this!

Annette Allen said...

wow you are so talented..what a lucky friend...

Helen F. said...

Jessi, the story of your son's lock down and Code Blue at school sent shivers up my spine! I can't imagine how scared the poor kid and his class mates were. Happy to hear it ended (finally) well.
PS: your blanket is a beautiful work of art and your friend certainly is a lucky duck :o)

lisa arana said...

Wow, what an event. Hope Connor is doing better now. AND that blanket is amazing!

Melissa Craig said...

Hi Jessi,

I've been perusing your blog and you create some really great cards! Then I hit this post. I am really sorry that your son had been so frightened by all the precautions the school and police had to take. This happened to my children a few years ago - it took a long time to disspell my fears. My children - well, they just felt inconvenienced. LOL

Anyway, about your blanket! OMG!! I used to crochet a lot. But I had to stop because it aggravates my arms too much (wrist to shoulder and then up my neck - ugh!). But I have always wanted to make one like this - it's GORGEOUS!! I made a basket weave one a few years with super soft yarn. I love the more solid afghans. I did start another afghan a few months ago and when it's done it'll be a Aran and it's really pretty. I just lost my place and then lost interest. I'll pick it up again someday. Anyway, just wanted to share and admire.