My mum is busy organising her own funeral.

This is probably a good thing for I know she is doing a much better job of it than I would. I get easily distracted, I have so many ideas that I struggle to chose, even when decided I tend to procrastinate and I find it extremely hard to ask people for help.

My mum however has none of these problems.  She has already planned out the event and organised people to participate.  Here is an abbreviated extract I stole from one of her emails.

“I am so thrilled you would take part in the Celebration we are preparing.
I do want it to be musical ….
I am being buried by the family in a local Green Wood Burial site so a quiet humanist ceremony but
We have this wonderful Arts Centre with a lovely auditorium usually closed on Mondays and it could hold enough and has a bar and food facilities in a spacious foyer
I don’t want a wake but want people to remember me for fun doing, learning and sharing.
I am not certain who I could persuade to come and perform? Who I would love is yourself and any other of our Hampstead musicians
I have two wonderful friends who are harpists…
Our Halesworth Community Choir… our local Ukulele group….”

You can see from it the typically ambitious scale of any event planned by my mum from the most recent Hooker Centenary Celebration weekend to the ‘Book Bangs’ she used to organise as a deputy head in London all the way back to the huge residents barbecues on the estate where we lived.

Also her remarkably enduring warmth, charm, enthusiasm and vision. Combined these make her quite an irresistible force. One person said to me recently

“your mother gives you this look and you know instantly you are about to agree to doing something. But she is so lovely you don’t mind. ”

I like to say that I have the distinction of being the one person who can resist her.

But the facts tell a different story

  • when I told my friends I was moving to Austin they said ‘you should write a blog’ – I thought about it but I didn’t.
  • when we got there and I wasn’t working my husband said ‘you should write a blog’- I argued against it.
  • when I was trying to work my way through the US health and Education system to support my kids my sister said ‘you should write a blog’ – I agreed but I didnt.
  • When recently my daughter was encouraging me to go back to work she told me ‘you should write a blog’ I really intended to but never quite managed to actually start.

Then my mum got her cancer diagnosis and she said looking at me firmly ‘ you should write a blog’.

By the end of that day I had created this website and posted my first blog entry.

So this is for you, mum.



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