I think about my mom a lot this time of year. Usually around the end of October I start to realize that the anniversary of her death is approaching. I am finally to the point where it doesn't result in random bursts of emotions. Don't get me wrong, that still happens every once in a while. But it is definitely not as fresh as it used to be and definitely not as hard to get through the month. I get a call from my friend Dylan's mom today and she tells me she is thinking about me and just wants to make sure I am okay. I guess November 12th is different for me than people might expect because it was really the day my mom's suffering finally ended. She collapsed on November 1st and was admitted into hospice the next day, so the subsequent 10 days was very painful for all of us to go through, but mainly because we were all waiting for her suffering to end. We knew it was over on the 2nd and while I feel fortunate to have had the next 10 days to get more used to the idea of life without a mom, it was very hard for me to watch the last transition of her life. She taught a course where they discussed end-of-life care and I remember watching a series of videos called "on your own terms". The videos discussed the legal aspects preventing medical professionals from "helping" people die even in the case of terminal illnesses. So I knew how she felt about the topic and I felt so helpless during her last few days. So November 12th is really almost a celebration for me. While I still wish every day that she was still here, I am so thankful that she is finally at peace. I love you Momma!