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Today is Remembrance Day in Canada, but it’s also the day I lost my Mom, on November 11 2012. 3 Years ago. In some ways it doesn’t feel like it’s been 3 years yet. In other ways it feels like a lifetime ago. Time is strange that way.

My Mom was an amazing oddball and I was actually looking forward to seeing how much more crazy she’d be as an old lady. We had our differences and fought a lot, but I think most daughters and moms do. But at the end of the day I knew she loved me and I know she knew I loved her.

There isn’t a day that I don’t think of her in some way. And I’m sure there will never be a day I won’t think of her. I miss her. And I love her. And for me, Remembrance Day is about remembering her as much as those who fought for our country.

So I wanted to share some memories of my Mom.

The first being the shirt in the pic of this blog post. Her famous purple vest. It started out as a sweatshirt she bought from Value Village that had “Against Women Violence” (or something similar) on the back in big pink letters. She didn’t like it being long sleeves so she cut them off. Then she decided she didn’t like it being a sweatshirt and cut the front to make it into a vest. Then, because she’s my mom, she added fringe to the bottom. It’s one of my fave memories of my mom because it’s her in a nutshell.

She was also strange with her made up words for things, like “Tinchy bugs” which are spruce bugs, and the weird nicknames she gave people like “Katrin” for my friend Catherine, and “O’Shaunessy” for my husband Shane.

I also like to remember her as the loving giving person she was. Every year she would take my husband’s work coat to the dry cleaner. And when he was off he’d visit her first at work, and then at home after she retired, for treats or snacks. When he had major dental work she picked him up and plopped him on my parent’s couch to watch TV til the medication wore off. And she was always dropping off snacks or treats for us. She even bought us Advent Calendars every year at Christmas.

She was also really loved by others, and I still think back to how packed her funeral was, spilling over into the back room, full of people who were going to miss her dearly. As I do.

Losing her was a big shock and cut deeply and the wound will never fully heal, but I can fill the hole with her memories and love, and think of her voice telling me how much she loved me, and it makes it bearable.

Cherish your family. Tell them you love them. And always hold their memories close in your heart.