Last weekend I was at my mom's memorial service and people kept telling me, "she's always going to be with you," and to look for the signs.

Seven days after she died she said hello.

I wasn't expecting a sign; I thought it's just one of those things people say to make grieving folks feel less alone.

And then I used my toothbrush.

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Let me backup a bit -- at the end of January, I was moving. All my things were in boxes, and when I went to use my electric toothbrush and found the batteries were dead -- I just used it the old fashioned way.

It went like that for the week of the move, which was also the week my mom was admitted to the ICU. Every time I went to use the toothbrush, I would hit the power button out of habit. Nothing, as expected.

By the end of the week, Mom was home from the hospital and conversations about Hospice were happening. I had done zero unpacking, and let things like changing the batteries in my toothbrush go by the wayside.

Every morning and night though, I still hit that button out of habit. Nothing, as expected.

Any time between working and homeschooling were spent with mom until the day she died. The Sunday after her memorial was the first time I hadn't gone to her house in months.

On Wednesday night -- a week after she died -- I went to use my toothbrush and out of habit, hit the button. But this time it started right up...fresh batteries!

I texted my fiance to thank him, because I figured he must have had enough of watching me hit the button on my toothbrush to no effect for six weeks. It also made me think something like that is something my mom would have done.

When he eventually came up to bed he looked at his phone and said, "I didn't change the batteries."

And then it hit me. She said hi. And she was still taking care of me.

If you've seen "Surviving Death" on Netflix, you know there's a theory that spirits of our loved ones -- our surviving consciousness -- can affect electronics.

Because my mother knows I'm not into subtleties, she said hi again the next day.

I have my mom's cell phone, and the day she died, looked at the last few of our messages. Last week when I looked there wasn't anything there I hadn't seen before.

When I checked again yesterday, I saw this:

Credit: Val Townsend
Credit: Val Townsend

Just because I can't see her, that doesn't mean she isn't here with me -- and thankfully, not afraid to show it.

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