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Here I would love to share with you our travels and adventures as international mushroom consultants. MEMOIRS about husband Pieter Vedder, who was a SCIENTIFIC PIONEER in Mushroom Cultivation Education. His practical handbook is in 8 languages and is called the MUSHROOM BIBLE: https://mariettesbacktobasics.blogspot.com/2020/08/modern-mushroom-growing-2020-harvesting.html

Sunday, January 10, 2021

My Angel Sister who Died TWICE


Cute decorative grocers nostalgia
These two boxes date from the first years just after World War II when the margarine was delivered to the grocery store in large blocks in a box. At the customer's request, the desired quantity was cut off and packed in a greaseproof paper or bag.
Parts of the production stamps are still present.
The lidded boards are missing, but the boxes themselves are in good condition.
Dimensions: 34 x 24.5 x 9.5 cm or 13.4 x 9.6 x 3.7 inches
Production stamps still present
On Wednesday January 11, 1950 my Angel Sister Mariet was born...
At least, she struggled hard for making it into this world!
She was the very FIRST GRANDCHILD on Dad's side of the family...
Here in the house (photo courtesy of brother Jan Van den Munckhof) where seven of us are being born, except the youngest who was born in the hospital...
Mom had to manage doing this with the assistance of a midwife, which was normal for that time.
My Angel sister had been too active and twisted around, so she had the umbilical cord wrapped around her neck and arrived looking BLUE
None of them acted rapidly for giving AR (artificial respiration) to the baby, for saving it.
WORSE, it got taken away from Mom, she NEVER got to see her own daughter... 
It would be better for forgetting and getting over it FAST, they reasoned.
How CRUEL. The baby clothes also got taken away.
Thirteen months later, I got born and again, I had the umbilical cord around my neck but the midwife came timely.

But now back to those Blue Band boxes...

Dad put the tiny body of my Angel sister inside such a wooden Blue Band box and put her under the fast-binder at the back of his bike.
My Angel sister Mariet was not allowed to be buried on blessed ground of the real Catholic Church's graveyard but instead on a small parcel of ground next to it.
When I was a toddler and a bit older, often Mom would take me there for a visit.
She told me about my older sister that had my name... I could feel her unprocessed grief. 
I've for that reason, always felt so very close to her and in a way tried to live for her as well.
Maybe that's why I got two crowns on my head, a funny way for trying to part my hair when making two tails.
Later on that parcel of ground, an iron shop got constructed, also selling household goods.
My Angel sister has been always very close and I often can sense her presence. 
She has been watching over me.
When I talked to Mom over the phone after she got hospitalized, it was on my Angel Sister's Birthday, January 11, 2015. 
Mom had been weeping all night, so scared and feeling so lonely.
Then around 7:00 AM Dutch time (1:00 AM our time), I called and a gracious nurse lend her the phone for half an hour.
I started by saying to her: Congrats with the Birthday of your first born today!
Oh, she said, is it?... I had not realized that and her voice changed.
I then went on that SOON she would finally be able to hold and hug her and SEE her for the first time.
She did so on January 27, 2015.
It felt so good for sharing these thoughts with her, her innermost thoughts and even for me myself, they'd been pent up feelings for so many years.
When Dad himself, was still active as the family patriarch, Mom's obituary came to be like above:
My Angel sister is listed at the very top, strange though with her baptismal name, one of three and she never got baptized...
Guess they found it odd for listing twice 'Mariet'...
Dad had arranged a solemn requiem Mass at our local Catholic Church, where also the choir sang, in which Mom was a member for over 25 years and lately, together with Dad.
Organ music and all.
Again, this got done by Dad, the patriarch!
The patriarch had died himself so now my sister Diny took the lead and she omitted our Angel sister!
So that is WHY she Died TWICE!
She did however add her significant other to whom she was not married...
Worse, there was NO requiem Mass, nothing, not even a chance for condoleances.
And that for Dad, who got his Royal Certificate for being a Choir Member for exactly 81 years to the date of his death. He got a Certificate for 70 and 80 years; unique in The Netherlands!
Over the weekend we heard that our honorary member has died
Piet Van den Munckhof
Piet has until this day been a member of the Horster Men's Choir; he joined in July of 1938 and was by far the oldest member of our association.
Although he has not been actively singing in our choir for many years, in May we were able to enjoy his singing qualities when singing the old Horster Anthem. As an accomplished performer, he recited this song at the St. Lambert Church.
"Horst can boast of scholars, shine because of their great talent", he sang then.
Piet was our teacher for many years as a 1st tenor and we are grateful to him for his contribution and commitment.
Board and members
Horster Men's Choir
In the guest book of the Horster Men's Choir I replied to the above:
Deemed board of directors and members,
From Dublin, Georgia we would like to bring the following to your attention.
We had a certain premonition and therefore we were during Papa's last days in Horst and thus have been able to say goodbye.
We cannot take the thought out of us, how wonderful it would have been if his very beloved Horster Men's Choir would have graced his Requiem Mass.
We do not doubt that the singers would have liked to have done so.
Unfortunately, my younger brothers and sisters have denied you this opportunity because they decided not to have a Requiem Mass...!
We congratulate the board of directors and members of the Horster Men's Choir for the well-chosen words in the newspaper report of Hallo Horst aan de Maas.
With respect and warm greetings from the U.S.A.,
Mariet(te) Van den Munckhof-Vedder
Pieter Vedder
PS The American law first uses the maiden name, then that of the spouse.

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  1. How tragic for your parents to go through that. I feel sure once your found out what was used for her little coffin, you never looked at one of these boxes in the same way. Wouldn’t it have been wonderful for you to have had that big sister, but sounds like you continue to feel her presence.

    1. Dearest Janey,
      Especially for my Mom, never having seen her first baby, neither touched or cuddled, it was devastating. She talked with me about it a lot and it always did weigh heavy on me.
      Certainly would have loved to have that big sister but in a way, she's always very close to me!

  2. Hello Mariette, What a sad story about your older sister, and how heartbreaking for your mother to lose a child that way. I am sure that as the first Mariet's "replacement" you were doubly precious to your parents. Moreover, you must have absorbed part of her spirit, giving you the strength and impetus to do the work of two people as you have always done!
    p.s. Your old house looks like a wonderful place to grow up!

    1. Dearest Jim,
      For my Mom it sure was heartbreaking and I've never understood why they let her not hold her... Her sharing this with me has always weighed heavy on me and I've tried my entire life to kind of make up for that.
      This photo is a treasure as things have so changed with lots of new homes around and the elderly house is painted white now.

  3. How very sad to lose a baby at birth, and how traumatic it must have been for your mother and the family. You are precious and must have been really loved by your parents and family.

    Praying for you all.

    God bless.

    1. Dearest Victor,
      Yes, it was sad and very traumatic for my Mom and the entire family...

  4. The story of your angel sister is so heartbreaking.. I’m sorry your mom didn’t get to see or hold her. You must have been such a wonderful gift for your parents after the tragedy and you did live for her as well. Now your mom is with your sister, both watching over you xoxo

    1. Dearest Tamago,
      Yes, it is very heartbreaking. Mom no doubt rejoiced after finally meeting her in heaven! I've tried to not disappoint my parents and also to live for my sister as well.
      She is very close to me!

  5. This post is beautiful in so many ways ... and so sad ... and another wonderful insight into YOU.

    1. Dearest Helen,
      Thank you and yes it remains sad, till we finally meet in heaven.

  6. Vuelvo a la actividad, después de tomarme unos días de descanso.

    Debe de ser muy duro para una madre, ver a una hija morir.


    1. Querida Antónia,
      Supongo que lo más difícil para mi mamá no fue llegar a ver a su hija en absoluto... Eso para mí es pura crueldad.

  7. How hard it must be for a mother to lose her newly born first baby and not be able to see it and cuddle it! But then you came and gave your mom so much love! I can understand your feelings for your angel sister! Now they are re-united with your beloved mom and dad.
    Many hugs,

    1. Dearest Marie-Anne,
      Guess it is one of the hardest things for a mother to go through and not cuddling your baby... Thank you for your words!


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