Today is #WorldCancerDay, and I want to take a moment to recognize my mom, who passed away from Multiple Myeloma, a rare blood and bone marrow cancer, five years ago.

There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think about my mom.

This is a picture of us when I was about 4 years old. My mom was smart, driven, kind, and she helped shaped who I am today.

I visited her one day at New York Presbyterian Hospital about a week before she died, and she said to me that I would always be okay, and I could do anything to which I set my mind and that she admired my resiliency. Well I got it from her.

I know I’m not alone in losing a loved one to cancer and still dealing with grief.

Let’s remember those who lost their fight with cancer and celebrate those who have beat it.

I also want to acknowledge the amazing work that doctors, researchers, nurses and families do every single day to help in the fight against cancer.

It’s not easy to lose someone to cancer or to any illness. But we must soldier on.

My family is everything

Each year on the anniversary of her death, my amazing family (with some new members she never got to meet) recounts our favorite memory of her and toasts her with champagne. This has been a wonderful new tradition in my family, and I highly recommend it to those who are also struggling with grief but want to do something uplifting on the anniversary of a loved one’s passing.

While my mom is gone she is most definitely not forgotten. She lived an amazing life, and I just wish she could see her family now and meet her grandkids. But I know she’s looking down on us.