Remembering Mom

Barbara Walker, Feb 2001 color, cropped

Four weeks ago my dear mother Barbara Walker left us. The photo above was taken in 2008, before dementia took over. Although she did knit, she wasn’t the Barbara Walker of stitch dictionary fame. Instead, her artistic medium of choice was clay. She took a pottery class when I, the youngest of her four children, started first grade. By the time I was 10, she taught for the local potter’s guild. By the time I was 16, she co-founded an art cooperative called the Lodestone Gallery here in Boulder, Colorado. By the time I had children of my own, she was an accomplished sculpture.

I photographed my Park City Cowl on one of her spectacular pieces.

Beauty 2

A few days before she died, I held her fragile fist in my palm. Despite my efforts, I couldn’t coax her fingers open. I so wanted a photo of us holding hands. Instead, I got a tender shot of my hand supporting hers. Poetic proof that life is, indeed, a circle.

Holding Mom's hand

Shortly after she died, some dear friends send me a pair of miniature brass hands in recognition of Mom’s talents as a sculptor, and to commemorate the photo above.

Brass hands from Lori

These tiny hands rest on my desk where I can see them whenever I type. I rearrange them daily and don’t mind that tears of loss that well up in eyes when I look at them.

For decades, people have told me that I look like my mother. I didn’t care much for the comparison when I was in my teens, but now I take it as a lovely compliment.

Please take a few minutes to give your own mother some love. If not for yourself, do it for those of us who are unable to do it anymore.

16 thoughts on “Remembering Mom”

  1. This is a beautiful tribute to your Mom, Ann. The hands of a Mother are so important to her children and what a lasting memory you have with your poignant hospital photo. Your Mom’s hand were not only tender and strong once but so talented! I can see why you are so proud of her art and how fitting that you posed your art with hers for that cowl. What a talented family! My thoughts are with you daily, Ann.

  2. Beautiful tribute.
    Yes, your faces are similar in structure.
    Wish I had more years with my Mom, but that loss was a very long time ago.

  3. What a lovely memorial for your mom. Please accept my sympathy for your loss because losing one’s mom at any age is such a terrible thing and I know because of her disease that there were times you felt her loss many times. I hope the give of the hands will bring you great comfort. God bless you Ann.

  4. So sorry for you recent loss Ann. What a beautiful legacy she left with you, as did mine when she died two years ago. Continue your art as she would have wanted you to do.

  5. My deepest sympathies on the loss of your dear mother. Your post today is a lovely tribute. I, too, lost my mother to dementia. And I, too, have beautiful memories

  6. Oh Ann, my heart goes out to you as I lost My father 8 weeks ago. By the time I got to him 1/2 way round the world his hands were doing the same and I never got the last squeeze I hoped to share with him, either. Thinking of you.

  7. Thank you for posting your beautiful tribute to your mother, Ann. As you are proud of her accomplishments, I am sure she was equally proud of all you have achieved in the knitting world.

    My thoughts are with you.

  8. Wish I had held my Moms hand like you did when there was still time, it is a treasure of a picture. My mom was a painter, she loved to paint, watercolor or draw trees. I do have one of her last drawings of trees, she had drawn them for people at her rest home, they were on a lot of walls…

  9. Your mother’s art work was beautiful. I am so sorry to hear about the loss of your mother. I do understand about giving love while you have them, I lost my mother some years ago.

  10. We never get too old to need our mothers, do we? My heartfelt condolences to you on the loss of yours.

  11. I’m so sorry for your loss Ann. May the lovely sculpture– the work of your mother’s hands– keep the memory of her forever close to your heart.

  12. I am not aware of the cultural differences, but we say: May she rest in peace!
    I also hope that in time you will also find more peace and joy in her memory than the sadness of her loss… I miss my grandmother (she was the person I was attached to as others are to their mothers), but when I think of her I feel the peace and the joy she was spreading around, not sadness.
    I hope the beautiful memories will get stronger than the sadness in shorter time.

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