Friday, 25 July 2014

Childhood treasures ....

I know ... I haven't been around over here for quite a while.
Those who follow me on Facebook or Instagram already know, but by a very sad event in my life, blogging wasn't on my mind at all.
But as the weeks passes by and recovering a bit of my energy I feel the need to share my past weeks with you. I have said this before but this blog is a part of my life, and therefore this post is a very personal one.

Before I tell you more I need to say that whoever says that social media makes life impersonal .... I so disagree.
Even though I've received a lot of support from my immediate environment I'm also disappointed in it by some people.That's why I was so surprised that people I have never met personally still occasionally enquire how I'm doing via FB and IG.
So heartwarming and a great support, huge thanks for that!

My last post was all about our lovely holiday in my beloved England and how I was swallowed by daily life again.
What sadly also implied that the health of my mother had gone even more backwards during my absents and needed urgent attention.

Sadly her willpower didn't make it to her fragile health and she, still unexpectedly, died in the vicinity of me and my sisters on May 24.
It all went so very quickly that though we were all there en she still was approachable we have not been able to really say goodbye.
She went like our relationship has always been .... unattainable.
A feeling that has always been there but now sadly irreversible.

The past few weeks were dominated by cleaning her house and the stuff that you
encounter .... they gave me a rather unexpected warm glow.
That might sound weird without knowing anything more about my childhood.

My mum wasn't always around, not in my childhood and also later as an adult. But , I should say isn't there always, a story lurks behind. A story that's no ones fault, for me it's just fate.

My youth wasn't unscathed. My mum became ill when I was a little girl and couldn't take care of us and was admitted in a mental institution. At that time a father was not considered capable enough to take care of his children and therefore my sisters and I were placed in a children's home.
That was to say the least not the happiest time.
Being so unhappy our dad finally brought us , against advice of all social workers, home but being at work the whole day we (understandable) missed, for a child so much needed, attention.

While everyone had given up on her, my mum recovered miraculously after nearly three years of absence and returned home.
With all her regained strength she tried to make us a happy reunited family again but the gap in the marriage was already to big and to briefly summarise, we ended up just the opposite.
After turbulent years of which we all have our own memories a divorce put an end to our family life and at the same time having a family home and surroundings.
All the family items and pictures went with our parents to their new homes. And if they got a new place at their new home, it was one without the associated memories ....

Why I'm telling all this is because going through all the stuff what used to be in my family home gave me such a warm feeling .... as if my youth wasn't that bad at all.
And at the same time a great need to give it a nice place in my own home, the ultimate proof of the existence of us as a family once.

All in all, I can say that my parents have done well given the circumstances.
Me and my sisters, we're very close. All happily married and having a warm family of our own.
It's always hard to explain my feelings towards my parents to anyone else, but not to them.
I'm so grateful to have them in my life and they know me so very well.

Also during emptying my mums home they came up with items they thought they belonged to me, like this vase ....

I still remember very well how as a little girl I admired the lovely lady on the front and now also love the (hand painted) details on the back ....

Another lovely keepsake, this little wooden box filled with buttons gathered in a lifetime and even with a few of which I recognise as mine when I was a child ....

I can't recall my mum wearing this but it is already my most favourite necklace, this beautiful cross ....

Even though my mum didn't like to talk about her upcoming end , about one thing she was very clear, she wanted me to have the clock who has been in our family for a very long time.
She had decided this because according to her it would fit best in my interior than my sisters.
At that time, I had my doubts about her "styling advice", but because of the family history behind it I went along, knowing how important it was to her.
I remember the clock therefore the best, hanging in the hallway at my grandparents home.
My mum told me that during the war my grandfather often nearly decided to exchange the clock for food but could not bring himself to do so because it already had been so long in our family.
The clock was very important for my mum and not only because it reminded her so much of her dad. She was convinced that if the clockwork was somehow disorganised emotional times were on their way.
At the time I always made fun about it but now it felt a bit creepy at first , hanging it in my home.

I'm now used to the sound and my mum will be so very pleased when I say this .... I think she was right, it fits in my home.
Just like with my grandparents, in my hallway ....

And of course lots of old pictures , but this one is still my favourite.
My mum and me, a very long time ago ....

Have a lovely Friday and a great weekend!



  1. Thinking of you Anita x Love the vase! a lovely keepsake. Take care...

    1. Aw .... thanks Maria, and yes the vase is my favourite too!
      Enjoy your weekend, Anita xx

  2. What a beautiful post Anita, thank you for sharing.

    1. Thanks Magda , I hope it goes well with you and Marika.
      Have a lovely weekend with your family, Anita xx

  3. Hello Anita! I enjoyed reading this post from you. I'm so sorry for your loss. Losing a parent can bring so much unexpected thought and emotion. I wonder if many of us enjoy the beauty of a domestic life so much more because of our unhappy youth. And also the connection through blogging. You have expressed yourself so well. My Mom passed fifteen years ago. We weren't close either. But I often think of her. It's nice that you can keep a few of your Mother's lovely things. Blessings to you.

    1. Hi Jaqueline,
      It's good to know that I'm not the only one with that emotion. And although I probably will make other "mistakes" my main goal has always been giving my children a warm home and that has brought me so much happiness.
      Thanks for your warm comment, Anita xo

  4. Oh Anita I did not know. {{hugs}} I send you my deepest sympathy. I am not on FB and just joined IG, so I did not know of this loss. Your memories are so valuable. I have tears in my eyes as I type. I understand the sorrow of having those disconnected relationships with your parents. I have them with my own...but like you, can collect memories of happiness in my childhood too. How very meaningful to be given the items you were passed down with. It must touch your heart to know that your Mom knew you deeper than maybe you ever felt. I know one thing...your childhood made you a more loving adult! You love your husband and children so deeply...I see that, I hear it, I know. How thankful I am to know you through blogging. Now I will go find you on IG. xx Kerrie

    1. Hi Kerrie,
      Thank you .... for your sweet words.
      I think your right by saying that my mother knew me better than I ever felt. And the feeling that now prevails is that I'm so sorry for her that she could express her feelings so little and and as a mum myself know she missed out so much....

      And how fun, not only the connection through blogging but also IG, look forward to follow you! Anita xo

  5. Lieve Anita,

    Wij volgen elkaar nog maar kort op Instagram. Ik kan mij herinneren dat je over je moeder schreef...Wat een groot verlies.... Fijn dat je zulke mooie herinneringen aan haar hebt. Deze houden haar levend!

    Veel sterkte en liefs,

    Madelief x

  6. What a moving post Anita, I'm so sorry about your sad loss. It seems that you have done very well in making a happy life for yourself despite past sadness and difficulties. You should be very proud at how well you have done. CJ xx

  7. sorry to hear about your loss in so many ways. It saddens me deeply your mother went through such mental anxiety. I'm sure she really wanted to be there for you and your sisters when she was in the hospital. How beautiful you and your sisters were able to be with her until the very end. So touching. xoxo Jen

    1. Hi Jen, thanks for your comforting words and yes we're still so very happy with the fact that we were there when she past away. As if it was ment to be .... Anita xo

  8. A beautiful post Anita and a real tribute to your mum. Please accept my condolences and be proud of your achievements. Now you can remember fondly with each tick of your clock. xx

    1. Ah thanks Chel, and you're so right about the clock, It stands for her rememberance and at the same time that live goes on.... Anita xx

  9. Anita, what a touching post, one that I am sure was hard for you to write. I am so glad that you got some comfort from the things from your childhood. I love the beautiful clock and am glad that you kept it. When my mum died, in difficult circumstances, I was so grateful for my brothers and sisters, we helped each other through it. I hope you will get a sense of closure from dealing with all the stuff in your mum's house, and find yourself more at peace.
    I know from your blog and fb that you are a lovely gentle person, with a beautiful family, so your mum and dad didn't do too badly at all! I find parenting is the hardest thing I have ever done in my life and I can understand my parents better now because of it.

    Thank you for your lovely comments on my blog Anita, you are kind. Wishing you a wonderful Wednesday, with much love, Linda xx

    1. Hi Linda, thanks for your warm words. Even though we've never met it feels like we've got a like minded soul.
      It was indeed hard to write but also something I had to do. And the doubts I had to share this are completely gone by all these heartwarming comments! Thanks again Anita xo