This is the story of a quilt that is not just personal to the special lady that holds it, it is also personal to me and my family. It is my privilege to make quilts for my customers and it is my heart's joy to make quilts as gifts for my own people. Ms. Michelle has been my son's teacher for the last two years and I wanted to make her something that would hold her and tell her just how much she means to us.
We moved to Atlanta when my son was six weeks old and then we moved to Charlottesville just a few weeks after he turned two. As a military family, this is (our nomadic) life. In the last couple of years I have realized that one of my (and I think many military families') main stressors is that we never live anywhere long enough to have the trust and comfort that come with the deep roots of long time friends or family near by. As a parent, it can do wonders for your soul to know that someone else loves your child.
Ms. Michelle was his teacher for both his two year old and three year old class and love him she did. She was patient and kind, enthusiastic and positive, intentional and confident. My son looks up to her, adores her, and depends on her....that sounds like deep roots to me.
I started the design process of the quilt a few months back. I asked my son what he wanted to make for her and he said a rocket. Since a rocket is outside of my wheelhouse, we settled on a quilt with a design that created X's and O's and a card with a rocket drawn on the front. Ms. Michelle's suggested reading to deal with separation for the first few days of school was "The Kissing Hand" so I knew I had to incorporate the element of a kissing hand.
Graham and I had a grand old time working on her quilt together and an even better time giving it to her. She cried, I cried, Graham beamed with pride, and hugs went around and around. I hope that every time she snuggles up to that quilt, she remembers just how important she is to our family and how much love and joy she has brought to my baby's life.
Earlier this week when I picked Graham up from school, I asked him what his favorite thing about his day and he said, "Ms. Michelle was my favorite thing about my day.".