I was a long and hard winter. This winter seemed to be a season of loss for loved ones. Or maybe with the loss of my own mother in January, I’m just hyper-aware. In any case, it was a winter that, emotionally at least, I want to put behind me.
This isn’t a eulogy or memorial. In fact, she expressly forbade that. Her written last wishes declared that she did not want a ceremony, or memorial, or service of any kind. “No Eulogies and No Poems,” it stated. It was the only part of her final wishes that was actually printed in bold. I don’t know if she intended it, but that part still cracks me up.
I am glad I was there, however sad it was helplessly watching her deteriorate. But no matter how much pain she might have been in, I do know that she was happy to have us all with her. And I am thankful that it was mercifully quick – she lasted about a week from terminal diagnosis.
Even so, in her style, my last conversations with her were not about her or her illness, but about my weaving, my new loom, and what was happening here at the new place. She always had encouragement and support for whatever I happened to be doing in my life. And when I expressed an interest in weaving at the age of 40, she kind of went into overdrive. For that, I am grateful.
Close up of the new loom. The rug in the background is Rug No. 1 – the first one I made back in 2007. In addition to encouragement, my mother gave me the yarn for this rug – wool yarn for the weft (Monte Tate yarn) along with the cotton warp. But more than that, the loom, the shuttles, and even the books I used as reference (most notably Peter Collingwoods “Techniques of Rug Weaving”) – all the equipment needed to make this rug – came from my mother. When I was done, I gave her the rug and she proudly put it in a place in the family room where everyone walked on it for almost 10 years. My step-father thought I should keep it. I only hope that its new prominent position – on the direct path to to the bathroom – will live up to its honorable past. I think that would make Mom laugh.
Coming up: Back to work.