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Traditions: 45, 20, 25

Happy Birthday Cameron!

Today we celebrate what would have been Cam’s 45th Birthday. It’s hard to imagine what he would have thought about being 45. He didn’t really like the focus and attention on him, and liked to keep his birthdays very low key, but he always seemed younger than his age, as he was always so full of energy and was hard to keep up with. 

We’re still pretty new to this gig of celebrating his birthday without him, and every person who has lost someone they love would understand that “Birthdays are hard!” is an understatement. Some of us visit him; some of us go out to his favourite restaurants to have lunch in his memory; sometimes we work in the garden; almost all of us will smash out some birthday push-ups for him.

We also have a little birthday tradition that has evolved out of the shared responsibility that is the custodianship of legacy. In the weeks leading up to his birthday, we talk about what memories or stories about him we would like to share with his following. That includes people who read this blog and his Facebook pages, his Paragon blogs and pages, and his other legacy projects, such as Be Kind Plant Trees and The Bullying Revolution. Our efforts to get our ideas on paper, our thoughts and memories colliding and conjuring up memories that are hard to think about, that bring both joy and sadness, almost always ends in us sitting down together on Cam’s birthday morning, and putting our finishing touches on the story or message that we want to share. This is our birthday tradition, and it makes us happy to think how much he would love to see us working together on sharing his legacy.

Depending on what we end up writing, we post the original piece in different places. Sometimes here, sometimes on his Paragon website, and then share it as much as we can so it reaches everyone who will benefit from seeing it. What we wrote this year was a best fit for the Paragon page, but as we reflect on his life and legacy, it also feels right to share it here.

We hope you are all celebrating Cam in a way that would honour his memory.

Nathan and Teresa

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