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Winning entry – Young Carer Poetry Competition 2017

I just hold her hand.
The voices that say ‘Make sure you look after your mother, this is really hard for her’ spin around in my head.
My mum is dying.
I never thought the feeling of being five years old and losing my mother in the shopping mall would become so familiar.
Another bad result, the sound of her distress fills the air.
My eyes keep scanning the room for an adult.
I realise I am that adult.
I attempt to remember how my mum comforted me as a child.
Inconsolable, I just hold her hand.
Providing care is easy but caring about my mum is too easy.
So easy that there is never an escape from it.
A testament of my love for her, I guess.
My life is meant to be just beginning while my mother’s is coming to an end.
Prematurely.
That feels so contradictory to me.
As a young person, I am expected to be succeeding and developing.
Meanwhile, my mother seeks closure and ultimately, is preparing to farewell this life.
I realise how beautiful it is to even exist.
But on the difficult days, I just hold her hand.
And silently, I yearn to be mothered.

– Young Carer, age 20

Sometimes reading other people’s stories can make us feel many emotions including; inspired, sad or stressed. It is important that we all look after ourselves! Please remember that if you feel like having a chat about how you are feeling, you can contact the YC team on 1800 242 636.