Posted by Jeanne Shrader on October 13, 2016
"Hello? Is this 911? I have an emergency!" "This is 911, what is the nature of your emergency?" "I dropped a stitch in my knitting and I can't pick it up...." "Ok, we will send someone right over. "
Some days I long for the tone of the pager and the crackle of the radio. In those days I was there to swoop in and help out and fix things. That is what first responders do, we go into a situation where there is chaos and we make calm of it. We get the opportunity to swoop in and fix things. Or, at least the opportunity to lessen the chaos and anxiety.
That is some of what I loved most about being a first responder. I was more than happy to drive big red trucks. I was pretty good at pumping big red trucks. I didn't mind putting on tons of gear to haul a hose into a burning building and help put out the fire. But, I was really good at helping to lessen the chaos and anxiety. Fires and big red trucks were cool, but the other emergencies, the ones where people needed a person, those were the calls where I could do the most. Those were the calls when I found my voice and sometimes, even God's voice. I could be the quiet calm, I could soothe the anxious soul. I could fix things.
I still do a whole bunch of fixing on the sofas, and even in line at the grocery. I will happily pick up the stitch that got dropped. I'm more than happy to take time to read the chaos of your stitches and do my best to make sense of them. On the rare day when a skein of yarn goes completely bonkers on the ball winder, or in your knitting bag, and is a hot mess, it soothes my soul to untangle that mess and fix things.
And I think that is why I'm in such a tangled mess myself, right now. For so many of you, my people, I can't swoop in and fix things. In the wake of this wicked rain dumping hurricane, so much of what I want to do is come and fix things. I want to build walls or moats around your precious homes and towns and businesses. I want to somehow manage to move the water to another place and make things better. And I can't. And I'm afraid that is why I am wide awake at 1:07, I bet a number of you guys are are awake now too.
This storm has been hard on so many. And it still has a couple of monster ugly days to torment my people and the people and the towns of Eastern North Carolina. Most of the news crews are long gone. The hype of last week has quieted to crickets chirping and the sound of building water. Waiting for a flood isn't cool or 'newsworthy' like hanging out in a neat bar and 'waiting out the storm'. So they are gone. But I wish I could be there.
I want to come and help drag all of your water-logged stuff out of your house and help you scrub walls and sweep out the mess. I want to come fix you a meal and pour a cold drink to nourish you as you work. I want to be in the mess, side by side, doing what we can to make it better. There is a bunch we can't fix at this point, but I wish I was there to lessen the chaos and calm the anxiety. I wish I could fix your dropped stitch. I wish I could lessen the anxiety of a row knitted wrong 4 rows back. I would happily back up your work, almost like backing up time, to be able to fix things. I would happily back up time and have this monster rain spewing storm go out to sea and leave all of us alone.
And so I'm awake. Like so many of you, waiting on the flooded rivers to peak, waiting for the the chaos to settle, waiting for the anxiety to calm. Waiting for life to get back to what it was. For many of you, that is going to take some time. I so wish I could swoop in, and make things better. Please know that in my heart I am with you. My prayers and my strength will hopefully give some quiet in the wake of the storm.
And, if you have a storm related knitting emergency, please feel free to bring it into the shop or call me about it. I am here to help, and I wish fixing a 'Mother Nature' event was as easy as fixing a 'knitting emergency' event.
Be safe, stay safe. Know that I want to make calm out of your storm.
In sticks and string. xoxo-j
PS: So many of you have asked about how sweet guy is doing I wanted to add in an update. His health is improving week by week, he is getting stronger, putting on good weight and feeling better. Most days I am pretty sure we are on the upswing. And, as you have just read, I long for the days when I could just fix things and make it better. It has been a slow recovery for sweet guy, and I'm afraid that for many of you there is a slow recovery in your future. Wish that I could speed up time for all of us.