OLYMPIA, Wash. – Heidi Fredericks doesn’t know why it works, but it does.
When her son, 8-year-old Oscar Caesar, is having a bad day he wants to go to Olympia’s Capital Mall, specifically Ben Bridge Jeweler. He doesn’t care much for the diamond jewelry or the old style clock in the store windows, he’s most interested in the sign.
“I just wish we could bottle it and reproduce it at home,” said Fredericks.
Caesar has autism, and his mother says he can act out in public.
“We don’t always get invited back to places,” said Fredericks.
But there’s something about Ben Bridge Jeweler that’s different.
For the last four years, she’s walked into the store to get a post card prominently featuring the cursive Ben Bridge Jewelry logo.
She said giving Caesar something with the logo on it relaxes him during a doctor’s office visit or a family trip.
Some days he’ll ask to go to the mall three times in a day to stare at the sign.
Last month he went inside the store for the first time, thanks to Ben Bridge employee Maria Coe.
“It just pulled on me,” said Coe, who first offered Caesar candy and a gift bag featuring his favorite logo.
Then she invited him in.
Now he likes to go to the jewelry showroom to play with My Little Pony dolls. It’s the first time he’s played in a public place, said Fredericks.
“I think he feels really safe here,” said Fredericks.
She’s thankful to the staff who she said have become friends of the family.