I don't know anyone who fought in WWII~ my paternal Grandfather did but I didn't really know him. My father was impacted by war by being an Army brat, he has boxes of slides from all over- Germany, Italy, Korea. I don't know anyone in Afghanistan. It's hard to find your place on Remembrance day when you have no rock to say 'this is who I am remembering for and who fought or died'. I also struggle with showing support but not making it about showing. For a long time, I didn't get In Flanders Fields and it didn't matter how many times I read it- until I had that moment I wasn't going to really get it.
And sometimes I feel overwhelmed. One of the reasons I became a teacher was so that history wasn't a joke- a wash. We learned all about WWII and the Underground Railway but it wasn't until college that I learned about Canada's interment camps, how we kept slaves, residential schools- and when I did I hated Canada. I felt so betrayed. Now I don't hate Canada, but it's not the brainwashed love I had when I was young. I love this country so much and I am so proud of being Canadian. I could list things I've done to prove it- but again, this isn't about showing others. It's about remembering. I know that it's ALL Canadians that are remembered today~ those who fell at Vimy Ridge, and those who fell on our ground here.
And, I'm getting choked up here so if the cheese factor gets too high I'm not to blame, my rock is my family. I remember because of them. They teach me empathy and compassion in everything they do.