A woman speaks on how she found her strength after her 72-year-old mother was diagnosed with a "dreadful illness".

Cassie Swift, 38, of Wallington, has co-authored a book with 14 other inspirational women. 

'The Girls Who Refused to Quit' focuses on the stories of women who have overcome adversity in their life. 

Swift's story focuses on her journey alongside her mother who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and Vascular dementia in 2017.

"It had been going on for quite a few years before, but people said mum was just getting old and forgetful although I suspected there was more to it," said Cassie.

"Gradually, she got worse until seeking medical advice was the only option.

"As a daughter, watching mum go through this whole journey is nothing short of indescribable pain.

"Living grief day in and day out as you grieve for the person who is slowly fading in front of you.

"It is traumatic- your mum/best friend is becoming an unrecognisable person who is unable to do anything for herself."



Cassie was 34-years-old when she had to learn how to balance being a single parent, while looking after her family home and her mother.

Business owner Cassie, took on all responsibilities including her mother's appointments, bills, medication, shopping and more.

"I was on auto pilot just going through the motions and monotonous routine," she said.

"It wasn’t until the emergency hospital visits and late-night confused phone calls and worrying for mum’s safety, that I said I needed help.

"That is when the Admiral nurses support and help was introduced along with carers for my mum."

She added: "The journey with mum has completely changed me as a person.

"The quiet, timid person was replaced by a strong and determined woman who didn’t put up with any rubbish.

"It isn’t what I chose but how I had to change and adapt to get through the challenges and hurdles that were constantly in front of us."

The book aims to encourage meaningful conversations that break the silence of mental health.

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"Reaching out for support has to become second nature in society as a whole," she said.

"Whilst mental health is being spoken about a lot recently, because of the pandemic. I feel there is still such a stigma surrounding it.

"We are human and can only deal with so much before people start to suffer with ill mental health in the form of depression, anxiety and unfortunately in some cases suicide."

She added: "I guess it was lucky in a way that I had dealt with ill mental health many years before, so I knew and recognised what I needed to do for my children, my mum and myself.

"I had reached a point where I had done all that I could, and I was reaching burnout where I would be no good for anyone.

"So, luckily, I had the strength to reach out.

"The book shows peoples raw stories in all sorts of situations, that I am sure everyone will be able to relate too in one way or another, but they all end with the author coming through it and being stronger than they were before.

"We all speak our truths and show how love, life and hope always shines through and show that you never quit, no matter how hard things get."

The Girls Who Refused to Quit, volume 3, can be purchased via Amazon here