Monday, February 17, 2014

My mother - Jeanine Ameloot

The night from Wednesday to Thursday, after seven years of dementia, my mother softly slipped away shortly after midnight... Thursday turned out to be a long day. Family council with the undertaker, practical decisions. My daughter and her husband were a great help. Then the pastor, a good man, came on Friday since my parents are/were catholic in order to organize the service which will be held next Wednesday. Tuesday she will be cremated.
The pastor had an interesting exercise: two pages with words in a long list. The family then had to say whether that word was a fair description of my mother. I know all family members hold a different position within the family and have different experiences and thus different views of her as husband, daughter, granddaughter and the granddaughter's partner. With each word that sounded nice her husband said yes, yes she was kind, yes she was simple, yes she helped people ...  My daughter having had the best of my mother was nuanced because she also knew, saw that it was different for me. This psychological exercise was very hard, trying to to find a balance between fair and honest. I have been touched by the kindness of my daughter and her husband and my friends, writing me, coming to the service next Wednesday, being there as support, sharing their experiences. I feel gratitude for this.
Photo by Bram Goots


  1. Dearest Annmarie, I'm with you today, day of the cremation. I will be with you tomorrow. Wat een mooie foto! Alsof voor altijd aanraakbaar. Jammer dat ik jouw moeder niet gekend heb en je lijkt erop, die (nog) mooie huid, die ogen, het haar. Ik omhels je. Rose

  2. Thank you Rose, you have been with me from the start of her dementia, guided me through difficult passages. Forever grateful that you shared your experiences wit me.