En nu is ook mijn moeder dood

Posted on 19 March, 2020 at 7:00

Mijn ouderlijk huis bleef bestaan toen mijn vader overleed. Ik was al meer dan 25 jaar het huis uit, dus mijn dagelijks leven veranderde niet met zijn overlijden. Niet dat ik hem niet miste, of niet om het minste of geringste vol kon schieten – nee: eigenlijk wèl bij het minste en geringste: juist bij heel kleine dingen, bij het heffen van een glas op -toen nog- koninginnedag met zijn woorden (Dat zij leve!), of als we een saucijzenbroodje aten, stonden vaak de tranen in mijn ogen. Niet bij de grote dingen waarbij je het zou verwachten, zoals een verjaardag of met Kerst. Want Kerst in mijn ouderlijk huis ging nog steeds door, de tuin was nog hetzelfde, en de keuken was al minstens 40 jaar niet veranderd.


Maar nu is ook mijn moeder overleden. En met de tweede ouder die overlijdt schuif je een generatie op. Ik ben de volgende. Dat zagen we al heel lang aankomen en tòch kwam het met een klap binnen op het moment dat ze overleed: mijn broer en ik zijn nu wees.

Al ben je al 35 jaar het huis uit, ben je zelf al hoog en breed moeder en ben je al heel lang niet meer van je ouders afhankelijk, het voelt vreemd genoeg anders als je niet één, maar je beide ouders niet meer hebt. Natuurlijk wist ik dat wel, maar nu ervaar ik het zelf.

En ook als je moeder zo oud is geworden als de mijne, ook als je er vrede mee hebt zoals wij, ook dan is het nog steeds je moeder die overlijdt, en dat maak je maar één keer mee. En hoort daardoor bij de grote dingen van het leven. En dus bij de dingen die lang op mijn netvlies zullen blijven staan.


Een andere ervaring deelden mijn broer en ik ook: we waren direct na haar overlijden nog meer van slag door de 50 jaar aan herinneringen die aan ons voorbij trokken, dan van het overlijden van mijn moeder zelf, zo opgelucht waren we dat ze niet langer hoefde te lijden.

En zo was het tegelijkertijd heel vervreemdend èn heel nostalgisch om haar huis leeg te halen, spullen te verdelen die je eigenlijk niet kunt gebruiken maar toch wilt hebben, oude fotoalbums door te bladeren met jeugdherinneringen, te lachen over haar belachelijk grote knopen- en garenverzameling, en haar, voornamelijk uit prullaria bestaande, sieraden uit te zoeken, die op wel tien plaatsen in haar slaapkamer verstopt waren. Met mijn moeder gewassen en opgebaard door mijn schoonzus en mij achter ons, hadden we allemaal het gevoel dat ze ieder moment kon vragen waarom we toch aan het rommelen waren in haar spullen.


Met dat de verhalen en herinneringen meer naar boven kwamen, werd mijn moeders huis leger, en takelde mijn ouderlijk huis af tot een leeg huis met schrootjes en foambehang; en realiseer ik me steeds vaker dat ik met haar spullen ook een deel van haar karakter heb gekregen, meer dan me soms lief is. Mijn man is het met me eens.


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