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Mary's Moments Blog Post

Our Silent Cheerleader

You know the one relative who always encourages and cheers you on; supporting each and every one? They are positive no matter what and make sure the whole family stays connected.

When I think about my Aunt Trudy, a flood of warm memories fills my heart. She was more than just an aunt (and god mother); she was a beacon of love, support, and encouragement for everyone in our family. She was the kind of person who made you feel like the most important person in the room, even if she was quietly battling her own struggles. Her life was a testament to the power of silent strength and unwavering support.

Aside of my mother, she was one of the first people to read the chapter I wrote before it was published. I remember the nervous excitement I felt, waiting for her feedback. Her response was everything I needed and more. She was so supportive and encouraging, praising my work and insisting that everyone in the family should read it. Her words were a balm to my anxious heart, filling me with the confidence I needed to move forward. Aunt Trudy's support wasn't just about my writing; she was a cheerleader for all, always there to lift us up and to celebrate our achievements.

Everyone in our family felt like the apple of her eye. She had a remarkable ability to make each of us feel special and valued. Whether it was a small accomplishment or a major milestone, Aunt Trudy was there with her trademark claps and cheers. She was a silent force of confidence, asking for nothing in return and often going unnoticed in her quiet acts of kindness. But we all knew that she was the glue holding the family at large together.

Christmas and other holidays were always magical. She thought of everyone. Her gifts were always thoughtful, and her presence was a source of comfort and joy. Aunt Trudy was the embodiment of holiday cheer, transforming her home into a magical wonderland for Easter, Halloween, and Christmas every year. Her decorations were legendary, with every corner of her house brimming with festive flair. At Christmas, she donned the most whimsical sweaters, and her big bunny slippers were a staple during Easter.

Her bubbly personality was infectious, bringing joy and laughter to everyone around her. A die-hard Disneyland fan, she carried that same sense of wonder and excitement into her everyday life, making her the life of every party and a beloved figure in our family. Aunt Trudy's zest for life and holidays made every gathering special, leaving us with cherished memories of her boundless enthusiasm and unwavering love for celebration.

The past few Christmases with Aunt Trudy were nothing short of magical. Gathered around our holiday table, we were fortunate to share delicious meals and enjoy the family togetherness. Each celebration was a cherished opportunity to catch up on all the family happenings, with Aunt Trudy's excitement for the season adding an extra sparkle.

Even as she faced illness, she managed to put everyone at ease, often joking to lighten the mood. She mentioned that yellow was her favourite colour but that soon changed and despite her diagnosis, she still found a way to laugh, showing us all her incredible strength and resilience.

Aunt Trudy was the most positive person. She would never speak ill of another and was a big fan of everyone in the family. She told my husband to never change his sense of humor, which she enjoyed when visiting. She accepted our neurodiverse daughter as one of the gang, never made her feel different or excluded in any way and shared in the excitement of seeing my oldest daughter in magazines. She was equally happy when that same daughter graduated with honours from McMaster following a family tradition. She had a knack for noticing things and acknowledging everything, making each of us feel seen and understood.

She kept the family updated on the latest happenings with the Toronto Raptors, Blue Jays, and Maple Leafs. Her email updates were eagerly awaited, not just for the sports news but for the sense of connection they provided. She kept us all informed and united.

Aunt Trudy's three boys were the center of her world, and her love for her grandchildren knew no limits. She had patiently awaited the arrival of grandchildren, and once they came into her life, she embraced her role as a grandmother with unparalleled enthusiasm and joy.

Fun fact which I knew nothing about until I was much older. She shared with me the two names she had chosen if she were to have had girls. The same I had named my two girls. What are the chances?

My early memories are vague as I was so young at the time, but I do remember summers at Uncle Claude's cottage with grandparents, baby cousins, aunts, and uncles. I remember playing on the beach, the sand between my toes sitting at the table with the family eating cob corn and the quiet moments just sitting and talking with Aunt Trudy in one of the cottage bedrooms while she nursed. Uncle Claude’s calendars, well, let’s just say they were very artistic and eye-catching, often sparking giggles among the grown-ups.

Though she was a teacher by trade, more importantly, she was a teacher of life's essential lessons: kindness, resilience, and the importance of family. I witnessed and learned a lot in those early impressionable years from my Aunt.  She celebrated every victory of every child, no matter how small, with the same fervor and joy. Her genuineness overflowed.

She never forgot important dates and events, always making sure to acknowledge birthdays, anniversaries, and other special occasions. Each of us felt equally treasured by her, whether we were siblings, in-laws, nieces, or nephews. Even family members who had separated due to divorce were not forgotten. Aunt Trudy's love was unconditional and inclusive, reminding us all of the importance of family.

Her life was filled with passions that brought her much joy. Aside of her children and grandchildren, she loved going on cruises and was proud to have achieved Diamond status. She looked forward to all the travels. She was also an avid crafter, always working on a new project, I still have an angel she made (it has been on my dresser since the day she gave it to me).

The casino was another of her favorite places, where she enjoyed the thrill of the games and the company of friends. And her faith was a cornerstone of her life. She was deeply involved in her church community, always ready to lend a helping hand.

One of Aunt Trudy's most admirable qualities was her ability to recognize the underdogs and shed light on their efforts. She had a big heart and a keen eye for those who needed encouragement and support. Whether it was a family member, a friend, or a stranger, Aunt Trudy was there to offer a kind word and a helping hand. Her compassion and empathy were boundless, and she inspired us all to be more understanding and supportive of others.

Aunt Trudy's life was a masterclass in quiet strength and unwavering support. She faced her illness with courage and grace, never letting it diminish her spirit. Her ability to find humor even in difficult times was inspiring, and her love for her family remained her guiding light. She taught us all valuable lessons about resilience, kindness, and the power of a supportive word.

She had a special talent: for the young and old alike, she always made us feel our best. Every moment with her was a unique experience.

As I reflect on Aunt Trudy's life, I am filled with gratitude for the countless ways she touched our lives. She was always there to lift us up and celebrate our successes. She will remain in our hearts, reminding us to be kind to each other, just as she was always kind to us.

It has been awhile since she passed and her

spirit lives on in the memories left behind. I am thankful to her for being our silent force of confidence and our never ending cheerleader.

Everyone needs an Aunt Trudy in their life – she touched many and her legacy will continue to inspire us all.


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