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Suzy Webster

  1. Suzy Webster Pippa Kelly 1:05:52

Suzy Webster is very special. She’s a mother, daughter, wife, and for many years carer to her mum, Barbara. In 2012, after Barbara developed dementia, she and Suzy’s dad, Gordon, came to live with Suzy and her family in Chepstow. 

When I first met Suzy over a decade ago, I was struck by her quiet determination, her love for her family and her wonderful way with words.  I can still remember her telling a conference that her parents had moved in with her and her family so that they could have “the dementia adventure together”. So simply put. Yet behind the phrase lay the endless reserves of love and courage that those of us who have followed Suzy and her mum’s story have witnessed over the years. 

This is Suzy’s third appearance on Well I Know Now and there is a sadness to this episode and a reason why Suzy is joining me once again.  For late in 2022, having weathered the dangerous and turbulent years of the pandemic, Barbara died aged 75.  Her death has, inevitably, left a massive void in her daughter’s life.

“Who am I now? What do we do without her? I began to grieve more than one mum; I missed holding her hand – as a little girl on the school run, as my go-to person in my young adult life, and her warmth as the constant presence in our lives as her dementia progressed,” Suzy told me. Adding, “Does that make sense?”

It absolutely does, Suzy. And I’m sure it will resonate with many listeners. The death of a mother, a mum, touches places deep inside us, exposing emotions we didn’t even know existed – at least that’s what I found, and I’m pretty sure I’m not alone. In fact, whenever I talk to Suzy I know that I’m with someone who really understands, who knows what I went through with my mum, and I think this is why Suzy has proved such a popular guest. Others feel this too.

Suzy and I are here today to talk about her loss, but also her future, her hopes and plans as she enters a new chapter of her life.

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Pippa Kelly Podcaster & Dementia Campaigner

Pippa Kelly is an award-winning dementia campaigner based in London. Host of the popular Well I Know Now dementia podcast, her articles have frequently appeared in the UK’s national press and she has her own website http://pippakelly.co.uk/. She also speaks publicly on old age, dementia and the power of stories to influence change. Her debut novel Invisible Ink, published by Austin Macauley, contains a small dementia thread based on her late mother who lived with the condition for over a decade, and is available from Amazon.

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