The Journey of Becoming a Fibre Arts Stenographer
Welcome to my blog "The Fibre Arts Stenographer" - seems like something you would find in a Harry Potter Novel. Although stenography and fibre arts are quite magical, I won't be headed off to Hogwarts any time soon.
I have been in the court reporting field for almost 20 years - the subject matter is almost always negative.
Which brings us to ...
The Crocheting Stenographer
By the summer of 2013, I knew I needed a positive outlet to be able to let go at the end of the day. At this point in my career, I was pretty much a stay-at-home typist transcribing court transcripts for Alberta, Manitoba and Federal Court. We were wrapping up the Residential School claims, and my focus was starting to shift. My girls were getting older now and in full-time school. I needed just a little more to fill my days.
I remember looking through Pinterest one day and seeing a crocheted blanket, and the rest is history. I self-taught myself how to crochet. I wanted so bad to make toques, and through many tears and upsets, I was able to make my daughter an owl hat and it kind of just of snowballed from there. I went on to make family and friends all kinds of crochet hats. I tend to obsess over things. I would dream of yarn and patterns. It became my passion. I needed all the wool. I needed to make all of the things.
Aren't they just the cutest?
Which brings us to ...
The Knitting Stenographer
I secretly had a "knitting" board on Pinterest. I wanted so badly to be able to be a knitter, but every time I picked up those darn needles, it felt awkward, so I would always give up. My girls were getting older yet again, and crocheted owl toques were just not cool anymore. So after seeing all of these beautiful knit toques, I looked up a YouTube video and decided that was the day I was going to become a knitter. No failing. No quitting. It was a must. (I will do another blog post on my beginning knits to now. Some definitely are cringe-worthy.)
I persevered. I did it. I became a knitter. Now what feels like thousands of toques later, I'm sure it's only been hundreds, but nonetheless, a lot of knitting has taken place. My knitting journey has taken me from itchy wool that your grandma used to make you the itchiest sweater at Christmas to acrylic based yarns to now only using high quality merino wool and a few other very expensive wools.
During my knitting journey, I had decided that it was time I go back into the real world of shorthand reporting; my girls were well into their school careers and they didn't need their mama at home anymore, so here we go ...
I will never forget the first case I was assigned to in the Court of Queen's Bench. It was a sexual assault/stalking/domestic violence trial. The accused is a self-rep, yay for everyone involved.
Please, and I repeat please, if you are charged with a crime, please get a lawyer. Criminal trials are not DIY projects.
I can't remember exactly what I was knitting during this painful trial. I was sitting there minding my own business, knitting, and who peeks their head over the dais? The accused. OMG, please no. I hope he's not talking to me.
THE ACCUSED: What are you knitting?
THE STENOGRAPHER: Oh, you know, just a toque.
THE ACCUSED: That's nice. My mom taught me how to knit...
Then proceeds to talk my ear off during the break about knitting, to which, I would like to say I am not interested in talking to you and just want a moment to myself after hearing you ramble on for hours and hours about your innocence and how she was a gaslighter and she was the crazy one and she was actually stalking him. But I don't. I do the usual awkward nod and smile waiting for the adjournment to be over.
This man and his erratic behaviour will forever be etched in my mind. How he tormented this poor lady and her children. He proceeded to sue her in civil court for custody of HER children. She had lost her spouse and befriended this man, to which he believed it was a romantic relationship.
Of course, the victim viewed their relationship of one of a friendship - not a romantic one. Over the course of a few months, he had inched his way into every aspect of her life. When she tried to break it off, he would break into her home and her place of business. He would follow them on their family vacations, and then pretend it was only a coincidence or that the kids invited him when she would run into him. She got countless protection orders. This guy was seriously delusional. It was a very sad case. His EX-wife sat in the courtroom every day in support of him. I wonder where he is now?
So that is where my knitting and court reporting journeys collided.
I hope you will follow along as I delve into the world of stenography and what an average day looks like being a Court of Queen's Bench Court Reporter/freelance stenographer and how the fibre arts fit into my daily life. I will share stories of courtroom drama, Zoom mishaps, true crime, what I was knitting, where I was knitting, where I get my knitting supplies, et cetera.
I would love to hear what you think - leave me a comment and let me know how I did. If you have any questions or topics you'd like me to cover, send me an email at email@example.com. Make sure to sign up for my newsletters to stay up-to-date on blog posts and upcoming stock launches.
Until next time...