Thursday, November 3, 2011

Let's skip it

I look at my calendar, and it approaches rapidly. December.
Or what used to be my favourite month of the year.

- Sinterklaas, still celebrated in our family, even if I stopped believing in the holy man long time ago. Mom baked gingerbread every year, I received little chocolate figurines.
- Our wedding anniversary - last year, my parents surprised us with a breakfast basket that morning.
- The Christmas market in Leuven. My mom and I made a tradition out of it. We went every year, ate oysters and drank champagne first, followed by pancakes and hot cider.
- My birthday. She made my favourite cake year after year. Last year, she brought it to Brussels through a snow storm. Almost none of my guests turned up, and I had to throw most of it away.
- Christmas, spent every single year together with my parents on holiday in a chalet in the Ardens.
- New Year, or lunch at my parents', and exchanging all the gifts under the Christmas tree.

I want to run away from it all. Of all the memories it will bring, of all the "missing" I will feel.
No, December will not be pretty.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


An email: "beautiful pictures darling. Didn't know you took one of me as well. Kisses, mom"
A text message : "Big hug, and welcome to the little man from grandma & grandpa".
A card : "dear children, happy 2011. May all your wishes come true".
A picture she took of me, the last one, with my big belly.

Everywhere I find little pieces of my mom. Just like the bread crumbs Hansje & Grietje left behind to find the way back home in the Grimm's fairy tale. I open my closet, and I see all the clothes we bought together. I go to the supermarket with my dad, and the self scanner greets my mom.
She's everywhere - and at the same time, she's so far away...

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


Does it make any sense to give flowers if the person for whom they're for, cannot receive them?
I don't know.
It's the first of november, meaning that the cemeteries in Belgium are abundant with flowers. And I don't know what to do. Yes, I want to give flowers to my mom. But I want her smile when she gets them. I want her to take them in her hands, unwrap them, and put them in a vase. And I want to hear her say "oh, how beautiful" and "you shouldn't have done that". Now all that is left, are silent pictures.