Dear mum, I may never recover from this illness. It’s been a year now since I suddenly got ill. So much has changed. Some days when the fatigue and pain gets too much and I can’t do anything else, I feel like my body is broken. Other days, I feel I have come so far in the past year, I am so proud of myself and feel on top of the world.

I’m aware of the impact this has had on you and everyone else in the family and I feel guilty. I took so much of everyone’s time and energies and caused so much worry. But I am so thankful that you were there for me. It must not have been easy for you.

I wonder mum, how is it for you now?

From here, where I am, it doesn’t seem any easier. I am sorry for bringing this on you, I really am. If I didn’t get ill… but that is a wishful thinking.

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Illness and mother and daughter relationships. B Babcock 2016

I wonder if you may never recover from this

It seems hard for you. Sometimes the way you look at me, it looks as if you don’t quite believe me when I say I don’t feel well. I know on the outside I look like the ‘old me’. I look fine, well even.

But on the inside, some days I feel awful. The crushing pain and fatigue I feel is like a heavy heavy blanket that I cannot push off. On these days I can’t do much even if I look ok. But know mum, I’m not faking it. Trust me. If I could just jump up and go out with you to do something fun or to help you around the house, I would.

I see how hard it is for you when you refer to me as the ‘old me’ and the ‘new me’, that wishful look in your eye.

When you refer to me like that, it hurts. I wonder if you don’t like who I am, how I am now. I have changed. That didn’t feel like a choice. No longer can I be the high-achiever. I simply do not have the strength physically or mentally. My achievements made you proud. I hope you are still proud at what I am achieving, despite the achievements being so much smaller.

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Mothers, daughters and illness – The wish and the guilt. B Babcock 2016

Maybe you can’t accept what has happened

Some days I am not sure I can accept it myself. Mum, please understand, I didn’t want this to happen. If I had a choice, I would go back to the ‘old me’. But I don’t have that choice. What has happened has happened. I have to deal with what is in front of me. And I am doing that the best way I know how.

You could not have prevented what had happened to me and if you could have, I know you would have tried everything possible.

I need your help now mum. Because I may never recover.

I need you to dispose of the wish for what was. Please trust me when I say I am not well. Because I may never recover from this illness. The doctors don’t even know. I sincerely hope this won’t be it, but it might be. And if I will always be as I am now, will it be enough? Will I be enough for you?

You’re my mum. I need you. And want to know I am ok as I am in your eyes despite my body not working as it once did. That you still love me. Know that I love you. This love is all I ever want for us.


Your daughter

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You are my daughter, you are enough. B Babcock 2016

What’s it like for you?

Do you have an illness, condition or injury you may never recover from? And has that fact impacted your relationship with your mother or daughter? What was your situation like and what did you do? Feel free to share your story below as it can resonate with other people and help them see that they are not alone.

If you are living with a challenging health issue or are caring for someone who is, and would like support on any of the issues discussed here, have a look at how we can work together and get in touch for a free no obligation consultation.

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This blog has been inspired by several individuals I’ve spoken to regarding the impact of their illness or injury on themselves, their mothers and acceptance (or not) of the situation. This is their story, the story of a daughter to her mum. It can equally apply to a father and son, to the son and mother relationship or the daughter and father.

© Copyright Barbara Babcock 2016

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