Goodbye Mum

Margaret Gladys Barnett (nee Milburn) 1919 – 2010

This past month has been difficult with my 90 year old Mum was admitted int Kingston General Hospital following another stroke… only this time not just a TIA. It was touch and go for a while then she was asking to go home, chatting and laughing and recognizing my Dad, my sister and me. 
I wasn’t here but on vacation at the time after a long and arduous March and April, preparing for and participating my big Spring shows, Kollaboration  Kingston and teaching in both Minneapolis and Hamilton.  By the time May 5th came around and my husband and I hit the road I was exhausted and sooooo looking forward to our annual trip to the group rented beach house on the Outer Banks. After a week however my sister Skyped me to say Mum had had a stroke and was in hospital.
We had a wonderful send off for her yesterday with soooo many of Mum and Dad’s friends, colleagues, patients, colleagues and friends of mine and my sisters. I think most of Kingston was there!

My Roots
Both Mum and Dad were influential in my career. Mum taught me to knit as a kid in England…and so did Dad a bit too. Mum’s Mum knit all the time along with other needlework. While Dad supported me in my fledgling business, Mum always wanted me to get a ‘real job’, she worried, but she owns several of my sweaters, some from 25 years ago! I’ll bring them back into the fold when my sister and I pack up her things. 
I’ve already retrieved some hand spun yarn that I will incorporate into some felting, bags of yarns have gone to Value Village (giving me several stamps on their Summer discount card… can’t wait for my 30% off shopping spree!). My friend Sonja took away  a couple of fleeces, shared some others with another fibre artist. I was going to give away a book on Spinning Weaving and dying but found too much interesting stuff in it… I’d love to do some dying some day….so that’s gone on my bookshelf.
I’ve taken back the old hand turned Singer sewing machine that I made many a dress on in my childhood and teens, with it’s curved lid. My studio is filling up with bits and bobs of knitting paraphernalia that Alzheimer’s had taken her away from. New lease on life here.
 Note the wine glass next to her urn…. now we won’t run out quite so quickly, she sure did love her white wine!!
Even though she was dealing with Alzheimers (as were we, mostly Dad), I miss her, I miss our coffee dates, having her in my studio and looking after her when I could (Dad did it all)…. not enough time.
Now she’s gone home….. Love you,  Mum.

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