Read about Sonia and her mum’s hilarious antics, where she tells personal stories and highlights the issues of growing up with a mentally ill parent.
Sorry – for walking in front of you. Sorry – for you letting me go first. Sorry, sorry, sorry. Why do we Brits say it all the time and rarely mean it? It’s a bit like ‘fine’ when we probably mean the opposite. Funny old thing, language. Tony & I have come to Spain for a couple of weeks and when I told Mum she said “Sorry you’re having to go all that way”.read more
Mum is enthralled with watching a repeat of the the royal wedding, but thinks the venue is rather odd. "It's a bit of a knockdown place don't you think?" sniffs my Mum. A knockdown place Mum? I'm not sure what you mean. "Knockdown, you know!" She's sounding...read more
A little pile of plain digestive biscuits, a cheeky smile and my mum's soft hand encasing mine - these are the presents I love. In the old days she used to buy the most extraordinary array of gifts from extravagant to plain loopy. Everything had a reason somewhere...read more
When did your mum tell you the REAL story about the birds and the bees? in front of the school? In the middle of a film screening? No? You do surprise me. Forget trying to watch a film or a TV show with Mum around. Anything on screen only serves as a trigger for...read more
Flower arranging - such a lovely sounding activity. Peaceful, colourful, relaxing unless you grew up with my flame-haired volcano of a mother. Spring is here and the daffodils are nodding, the snowdrops are peeping, blossoms are warming up for their big entrance. ...read more
“The Hurling” is my and Mum’s code for a situation where you get so frustrated, angry and irrational, the only thing to do is hurl things. “I had a hurling last week, Sonia darling” Mum told me once with a mischievous giggle in her voice. She’d hurled two cups of coffee over the care home fence as it had got too cold – no doubt losing essential temperature while she was throwing biscuits into the laps of her fellow residents. She referred to another hurling recently, but couldn’t quite remember why she’d done it; something to do with clothes. Knowing not to directly question or contradict her I told her that I felt like having one myself last Friday. She went quiet for a while, breathing hard into the telephone, took a sharp breath and asked “But you didn’t though, did you? Promise me you didn’t”.read more
Whenever Mum has travelled, she’s done it in style; her style. No itineraries, formal arrangements or the usual panic about getting everything sorted before leaving the house, oh no. Mum just ups and offs. Or used to. When I sorted her house out I found extraordinary accounts of her adventures, some of which I knew about and many I didn’t. She annotated everything and even made up her own travel albums about MY adventures too, replacing actual photographs with clippings from magazines and pictures of women who looked a bit like me.read more
As Mother's Day in the UK draws to a close, I can honestly say that there's never been a day like it. Having spoken on Jeremy Vine's show on BBC Radio 2 a couple of days ago about this blog, my precious mum, her lifelong mental illness struggles and our...read more
Tell your story!
My precious mum, Margaret Beldom, passed away peacefully on 12th November. She loved hearing all the stories that people shared about their own lives with people with mental health issues. A new conversation is starting, and it’s extraordinary. Please read “Surprise, surprise” and share some stories of your own.