Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Security Blankets

Toddlers often have a favorite blanket that they drag around with them everywhere they go. Usually, it will be a baby blanket that was used in his crib. As he grows into a toddler, the child will want to sleep with the blanket for naps as well as bedtime. It  becomes tattered and worn, but it continues to provide a sense of security for the child, often into kindergarten and first grade. Linus, a character in the cartoon strip, "Peanuts," is a prime example.

While I don't drag one around with me, I do use lap quilts. They provide warmth when I'm sitting on my front porch in cool weather, drinking my coffee and watching the squirrels jump from tree to tree. I keep the temperature low in my house, and use lap quilts while I crochet or read a book. As a child, I would take a pillow and quilt to my front porch and lie down to listen to the rain.

A few years ago, I started requesting a blanket at my dentist's office. This habit began because it was so darned cold there. I quickly noticed that it had a psychological affect, too, by calming some of the anxiety of being in a dental chair and having that needle or drill coming at me.

There is something so very comforting about wrapping yourself in a blanket. Not only does it provide warmth and security, but if it was made by someone special, it can provide a connection with that person or even a sense of place. I'm not the only person who recognizes this. A friend makes kid-size lap quilts for the local sheriff's department to give to children taken from their homes by child welfare services. I know others who make quilts or crochet afghans for beds at veterans' homes, and others do the same for folks undergoing dialysis. 

We make blankets for babies as shower gifts, too. I've read that swaddling a newborn snugly, even tightly, calms it because it gives her the feeling of being inside her mother's womb. Maybe that's what it does for some of the rest of us. I don't know. I only know that cuddling up in one makes me feel less vulnerable. 

In a world full of uncertainty, we could all use a security blanket now and then.


  1. Jilda uses those in her Yoga practice. Some of the professional (doctors, nurses, lawyers) use them during relaxation, but ALL the soldiers returning from Afghanastan use the blankets. They say they make them feel more secure. So the kids are definitely on to something.