The Brightest Star in the Sky #SheHelped

#SheHelpedWhen Canesten invited me to take part in their #SheHelped campaign, and share a personal story about an amazing woman from my life, I didn’t hesitate to get involved. One lady will always shine through the rest, the brightest star in the sky.

My Grandma

To say that she was incredible would be an understatement. When my Grandfather was killed in an horrific car accident while they were living in the States, my Grandma – who was six months pregnant with their sixth child – came back to the UK to raise her family alone. She was ousted by her in-laws, because in their bitter grief they blamed her for ‘making him go to America’. She worked full time to ensure there was always a roof overhead, and food on the table.

Although there were thirteen grandchildren, I know that she had a soft spot for me, and we shared a very special bond. When things were rough at home, I’d pack a little bag and say I was ‘running away to Grandma’s’. I used to sleep over at her house regularly, and she would spoil me rotten with her amazing food and warm affections. Over time my memories have become blurry, but I clearly remember her cooking. She used to make soul-warming chicken soup that could disappear a cough or sniffle after one mouthful. Her desserts were divine, and there was always plenty of peanut butter in the cupboard because she knew the grandchildren loved it on toast.

Over the years many people have asked me how I managed to end up so ‘normal’ after my severely dysfunctional start in life. I have no doubt that it was because of my Grandma’s influence.

One day when I was seven or eight years old we were at her house and my step-father pulled up outside in his car. My mother went out to see him, cue lots of shouting and crying. Then she came back inside and made me go out to the street to say goodbye because ‘daddy was going to kill himself’. He had a shot gun in the passenger seat and was absolutely paralytic drunk. He didn’t go through with it, and it was my Grandma who picked up all the pieces as she usually did back then.

During my childhood, down was up and right was left, but my Grandma was my stability. Unfortunately cancer took her away from me when I was eleven. I’ve often wondered if my life would have turned out differently had she stuck around for longer. What I do know for sure, is that my early years were enriched by her presence. I was lucky to have her, even if she did leave too soon.

Share your own story of being inspired by an amazing woman for your chance to win a £75 John Lewis Gift Voucher! 

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**Disclaimer: this post has been supported by Canesten, but all thoughts are my own. Click here for my full disclosure policy.**

“Canesten are helping women around the world, providing education and solutions for their intimate health. We are helping those women who are less fortunate than most of us. That is why we wanted to support, in any way we could, refugee women affected by the Middle East crisis who are living in sub-standard conditions in camps and settlements in various countries. So we offered a substantial donation of Canesten thrush products (around £320,000 worth) to International Health Partners, Europe’s largest charity coordinator that organises the safe and responsible donation of medical products and supplies to developing countries.” 

Listing this giveaway on: The Prize Finder, Super Lucky Me and U, Me & The Kids Blog Competition Linky

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  1. Chloe Ellis
    April 29, 2016 / 10:45 pm

    Sister always looking out for me and giving me advice

  2. April 29, 2016 / 10:45 pm

    My inspirational lady is my mum who raised my sister and I all on her own without any help. She recently fought and won against breast cancer. She is my rock!

  3. Gem Cook
    April 29, 2016 / 8:32 pm

    My inspiration is my mum. No matter what life throws at her, she picks herself up and always smiles. She is my rock and does everything for her family.
    She has tought me ‘Not to sweat the small stuff’.
    Fantastic Giveaway!
    Thank you for the chance.
    I love reading your blogs. Keep up the great work!

  4. Lauren Old
    April 29, 2016 / 6:33 pm

    My mum is my inspiration. Despite being bullied as a child for a scar on her face, she is the strongest woman I know and doesn’t let anything bring her down

  5. Ann Robinson
    April 29, 2016 / 5:34 pm

    My insperational lady is my mum who is always there for me, she has shown me the way to live a good life and to help other

  6. Tina Glover
    April 29, 2016 / 4:10 pm

    My grandma is the most inspirational person I have ever know. She died at the age of 84 . My grandad died when i was just 8 leaving my grandma with 9 children. My grandma moved to Bootle from Ireland when she was 8 with her younger brothers and sisters and had to raise them from the age of 10 – during the first world war! It doesnt even bear thinking about. Over the years she suffered from many serious elements including battling breast cancer and having her gall bladder removed and she never complained once. She always put on a brave face and always looked immaculate.

    Such a lovely blog post and it has made me emotional xx

  7. Sarah Wilson
    April 29, 2016 / 1:59 pm

    My grandma is the most inspirational lady I’ve ever met! She had 14 children, and after my granddad passed away at a young age, she was left to bring them up alone. She never complained, and did a fantastic job. She passed away aged 90, and I miss her every day.

  8. Kay Broomfield
    April 29, 2016 / 1:16 pm

    My mum is an absolute inspiration to me. Just recently she’s given up smoking after over 50 years. It’s that ability to continue to set herself goals and achieve them that I really admire in her!

  9. Melanie Burton
    April 29, 2016 / 11:41 am

    My mum is my hero. My dad passed away 5 years ago, but she has remained strong for us all. Also, I nearly died in Germany and as soon as she heard she got the first flight out and paid for all my hospital bills!

  10. jessica cook
    April 29, 2016 / 10:30 am

    My darling mummy who is unfortunately no longer with us, she is my inpiration as a strong woman and as another and has always taught me to believe in myself and love myself

  11. neringa pakulyte
    April 29, 2016 / 10:23 am

    my sister edita is my insperation i have 20 month old twins aron and harrison sadly aron has an inoperable tumor my sister has helped from day one organising babysitters taking all her holidays to help staying in the hospital in london with us she has been my rock and i cant begin to say how much i love and cherish her

  12. Cathy O
    April 29, 2016 / 9:43 am

    My amazing woman is my sister. She has three of her own children and has been fostering for nearly ten years and has put so much energy to transforming less fortunate childrens’ lives. From new born babies collecting them from hospital, to emergency placements of siblings at very short notice, to longer term placements of young boys and girls who are now enjoying their lives with their new adopted homes she selflessly has made possible. A twenty four hour job, seven days a week every week of the year and ensures her own family is never neglected too. She is always working and has total commitment and never gives up on a child.

  13. Sarah Hughes
    April 29, 2016 / 8:54 am

    My mum who is in remission from cancer. She had treatment all last year and didn’t complain about it once.

  14. Jessica Hutton
    April 29, 2016 / 6:53 am

    My mum is my inspiration because she literally gave me back my life. I have a very rare disease that leaves me in constant pain and is nicknamed the suicide disease. It had put me in a wheelchair. I was taking 32 tablets a day, off sick, fainting from the pain and basically housebound. I was majorly depressed and the doctors had no idea what was wrong with me they just told me to live with it and offered me morphine. My mum refused to accept this and did a LOT of research, she emailed doctors round the world, drove me to appointments round the country, joined groups on the internet and after 6 months she found a possible answer and the doctor that could help. Took me to see him and I had a diagnosis. Since then she has looked after me during 2 spinal operations when I couldn’t do anything for myself. She has supported me financially, emotionally and been my rock. I’m no longer in a wheelchair, back at work part time and have my life back. My mum did all this while going through a divorce and having a very stressful job. She is so strong and my hero. Xx

  15. Jamie Millard
    April 28, 2016 / 10:41 pm

    my mum. always showing unwavering patience in the face of utter chaos. and chaos has been a regular event over the years. even now, with health fading (and having a scare with a bad fall) she’s still there, looking after everyone else before herself

  16. April 28, 2016 / 4:52 pm

    My auntie Val. She isn’t really my auntie but she helped my dad and his brothers when their mother (my nan) died when he was 13. She has always been there for our family and still in her 80s she travels alone to San Francisco to see my uncle and family. She is a lovely lady and never had kids of her own and her husband died over 25 years ago she is always the life of a party and just a wonder lady.

  17. Elizabeth Gurney
    April 28, 2016 / 1:53 pm

    My nana. She’s 94 but still continues to inspire me daily. She has always looked after me my whole life, nursing me when I’m sick, letting me tell her my thoughts and reassuring me. It’s her that has given me confidence and made me the woman I am today. She still cooks me and my husband a full (and thoroughly delicious) roast dinner every Sunday and still tells fantastic stories. She has a wonderful insight into the world and really proves that age is just a number!

  18. liz ferguson
    April 28, 2016 / 1:52 pm

    My Mother who is a bit of a Mary Poppins for kids and adults alike.
    She attracts people like a moths to a flame.
    I admire her kindness and honesty xx

  19. Victoria Prince
    April 28, 2016 / 7:38 am

    My mum has both helped and inspired me 🙂 she has been a fantastic role model and such an inspiration to me, and when I turned out to be severely disabled and require a high level of care she has continued to do that uncomplainingly and so selflessly – she never puts herself first. Of course she isn’t perfect 🙂 but I couldn’t ask for a more wonderful, caring and inspirational mother

  20. Jane Middleton
    April 27, 2016 / 10:26 pm

    My grandmother was an inspirational woman, always sticking to her principles, a very strong woman.

  21. Penelope Hewitt
    April 27, 2016 / 7:31 pm

    My Nan is my inspiration at 86 she has outlived 2 husbands who both died from Cancer she nursed them both for as long as she could. She is always there for us, she keeps my Mum in line and lets me get away with anything, well not that I do anything bad. She always knows what to say, is strong and still lives happily on her own. She has a better social life than I do, I could go on and on she is amazing and is a fab great-grandma. I can’t wait to see her in August and spend lots of time with her

  22. Danika Lloyd
    April 27, 2016 / 6:49 pm

    Earlier this year my Auntie donated her kidney to my Dad who was very poorly. She’s amazing.

  23. April 27, 2016 / 6:02 pm

    My mum has helped me through some rough times and I am constantly inspired by her

  24. Jennifer Badger
    April 27, 2016 / 5:00 pm

    Mymum is inspirational. She always made me believe growing up that I could do anything I wanted to. She was a full time carer for my grandmother whilst still looking after my little sister yet always finds time for me

  25. Ian Campbell
    April 27, 2016 / 3:41 pm

    My mother and grandmother are my biggest inspirations. Two generations of women whose ideals and morals helped shape me into the person I am today. Their stoicism, warm natures, and sense of humour showed that life can tackled with positivity and verve, no matter the situation, with plenty of smiles and laughter along the way 🙂

  26. Sarah Mills
    April 27, 2016 / 8:48 am

    My mum shes so strong and generous. She comes in a small package with a big heart x

  27. Dale Dow
    April 26, 2016 / 6:01 pm

    my Mum is an inspiration, despite being about to retire when my sister died, she took in her 4 kids, she would always put others above her needs despite us telling her to spoil herself for once, we lost my Dad last year and despite her dying inside she was a rock for us

  28. Jayne Townson
    April 26, 2016 / 12:35 pm

    Mine was my Nan, she was amazing woman and always ready to lend a hand.

  29. olivia Kirby
    April 26, 2016 / 11:45 am

    My mum is everything I aspire to be – clever, kind, funny and caring – she is there for her family at all times.

  30. kimberley ryan
    April 25, 2016 / 1:32 pm

    my mum, she has had 3 major strokes and other serious health problems, yet she raises thousands of pounds for charity and she is the first person to offer help to any one who needs it

  31. Caroline Cordery
    April 25, 2016 / 12:34 pm

    My mum is always thinking of me, cutting out snippets from the local paper and magazines that she thinks are of interest and bringing them in a little pile when she visits.

  32. fozia Akhtar
    April 24, 2016 / 4:34 pm

    My best friend…she has always been there for me. Her support and love are unconditional.

  33. Sue Price
    April 23, 2016 / 11:54 pm

    My mom is my inspiration, she’s the bravest, strongest and most caring woman I know. She got us through domestic violence by my father, and one day managed to get us out and away, free and safe at last! She was a rock, whilst suffering so much herself. She supported me and my siblings through thick and thin. I admire her selflessness and her determination to get us the love we wanted and deserved. She is my hero.

  34. Valerie Seal
    April 23, 2016 / 7:54 pm

    In 1998 I had breast cancer and went to a self help Cancer support group. There was one lady in particular who was a shining example with her positivity, wisdom and warmth. She had survived for 16 years, which was all I wanted to hear at that point. She has been an inspiration ever since even though her poor health has not made it easy for her.

  35. Monika Szabo
    April 23, 2016 / 10:17 am

    My mum has to be my inspiration, she is strong and good-hearted, opinionated, determined and never gives up

    April 22, 2016 / 7:52 am

    My 25 year old daughter who has such a great positive attitude to life

  37. April 21, 2016 / 9:49 pm

    My nan, too. She was brought up in a large, poor family. She was bombed out during WW2 and evacuated hundreds of miles away from home. She had 8 children, one of which died in infancy. Her and my granddad were so poor they couldn’t even afford a funeral or a grave for her. My nan was very ill with thyroid problems and was a tiny 6 stone. She worked nights whilst my granddad worked all day so they could support their children. Eventually they both became very successful, and continued to run a business together in retirement. They hired out their 6 Rolls Royces for weddings, and even today, my granddad and all the ex-chauffers talk about how my nan was the head of the business and it wouldn’t have been a success without her. Now, at 84, one of the eldest of all her siblings, she is in the best physical condition, is incredibly strong willed, opinionated and stubborn, she loves to dress up and go out fine dining, she loves her bottle of wine. She just inspires me in every single way because she is incredibly strong.

    xo Millie

  38. Jodie W
    April 21, 2016 / 7:50 am

    My mum is my inspirational woman. After the birth of my son i was devastated when Dr’s forced me into giving him formula from a bottle, (i wanted him to be cup fed by they wouldnt allow it) and was unable to breastfeed, got no help on the ward either. I left the hospital on day 2 not being able to breastfeed which is something i felt very passionate about doing for my child and giving him bottles feeling like a failure and crying a lot. My dad drove my mum the 8 hours to see us all and left her with us and she knew just what we needed and got me and my son breastfeeding successfully by day 4. Thanks to her I was able to feed my son in the way I had wanted to for as long as we wanted to and am certain she made the difference in me being able to give my son what I thought was the best start in life.

  39. Isabelle Smith
    April 20, 2016 / 11:57 pm

    nicole kidman

    beautiful, smart, talented, just love her

  40. Tammy Tudor
    April 19, 2016 / 11:30 pm

    My mum is such an inspirational woman she helps with my life and she has always helped others. She puts everyone before herself and helps children who come from disadvantaged backgrounds

  41. karen
    April 19, 2016 / 10:52 pm

    My Aunt has lived the most unlucky life yet has never given up, and has always just carried on. She has lost 3 of her 4 children all suddenly, all at different ages and all from different things, two of them being on the same date, 40 years apart. She has battled cancer herself, lived through a violent and abusive marriage but has never lost her faith, never turned to drugs, drink etc to support her and has somehow managed to hold on to her home, a successful career and her sanity

  42. Marianne Daniels
    April 17, 2016 / 9:10 pm

    My mum is tough as nails. She taught me to persevere, to cry for a bit, then to build a bridge and get over things. She taught me to improvise, to be eloquent, to be brave, not to depend on anyone and to be self-sufficient, but also not to be too proud to love or to fail to see your own faults.
    She’s amazing.

  43. April 16, 2016 / 3:40 pm

    My mum became a single mum when I was 10 and my brother was 8. She worked any hours we could whilst we were at school to give us great birthdays and Christmas and although I don’t remember this being a particularly hard time for us, it was and because of Mum’s upbeat attitude and her determination she made it a pleasant child hood for us, she’s truly inspirational! 🙂

  44. Demi
    April 16, 2016 / 3:15 pm

    My mum raised three of us alone, she worked full time at a supermarket alongside an open university degree so that she could get a better job to support us the in the future. She put her social life on hold for so many years just to make sure we had enough money.

  45. Sam Goodwin
    April 15, 2016 / 10:36 am

    My mum who works full time as an NHS nurse, despite her crippling arthritis! Also she still helps look after the grand children and so much more!

  46. Stevie
    April 14, 2016 / 9:38 pm

    My German grandma was being abused in the war, grandad stepped in to help. They eventually married and she moved to England. People spat in her face but she stuck it out to raise a little family.

  47. Helen Humphries
    April 14, 2016 / 3:46 pm

    Like another commentor I think Emmeline Pankhurst and the early suffragettes were amazing, the courage they must have had to stand against the social order and their self belief is inspirational.

  48. Keri Jones
    April 13, 2016 / 8:30 pm

    My Gran was my inspirational lady. She helped my dad raise me from when I was 2 and a half years old. She worked in a playgroup/nursery and after that she did cooking lessons at my school. She taught me right from wrong, how to cook, iron, make the bed and so much more. My friends all loved her and a lot of them called her Gran too 🙂 She always played with me, whether it was Monopoly or badminton, she was such a great lady. I am so sad my son never got to meet her 🙁

  49. Adrian Bold
    April 13, 2016 / 6:16 pm

    My Mums been through such a lot in these last few years. But even during some of her harder times, she’s always been there to support me through my own highs and lows.

  50. Farhana
    April 12, 2016 / 9:02 pm

    It has to be my mum. She helped me through post natal depression when dealing with very ill baby.

  51. Zoey P
    April 12, 2016 / 5:07 am

    My gran, strong caring lady who even at 88 had a presence about her. Heart of gold and whom i learnt so much off

  52. Clare Davies
    April 11, 2016 / 9:47 am

    growing up I had quite a turbulent childhood spent in and out of care My mum wasnt very well – so it was hard to feel settled and i always felt i didnt belong to anyone and was passed from pillar to post too much. One of my foster parents was a wonderful woman who give me assurance in myself and give me the strength to believe in myself. She was an amazing woman who was loving, caring and nurturing and im so thankful for this she really gave me a sense of family and home and shes my #amazingwoman

  53. marie powell
    April 11, 2016 / 6:20 am

    My childrens grandma Amy, when I was young and had two little ones we would visit her daily, she was only little but was one of the strongest women I have ever met, she taught me that it no matter what it costs you must stand up for what you believe is right and she had so many cooking tips on how to feed on a budget. The memories still make me laugh and cry, she was taken when my daughter was around 10 to 11 years old but she had such an impact on her that my granddaughter is named after her.

  54. leanne perrett
    April 9, 2016 / 5:38 pm

    my mum is my inspiration in life after being taken to a foreign country by my dad for his new job she sank into depression and alcoholism when she found herself alone with no one to talk to and 3 kids to make matters worse my dad left her for another woman most women would have completly given up but she descided to take a chance moved back to the uk as a single mum and became sober all on her own she has been sober for almost 22 years now and is enjoying life with 3 kids 8 grandkids and one gteat gran daughter everytime things get tough she stands tall and fights and im very proud of her

  55. Bryanna M
    April 7, 2016 / 1:59 pm

    My mum and my grandmother made me the woman I am today. They showed me how to be strong and not give up, to bring humour and kindness to every situation, and how to keep on keeping on even during the toughest times.

  56. Sandra
    April 5, 2016 / 9:43 pm

    My Nan is an inspirational woman, still working at 71, doing charity work, I hope I have the energy when I’m that age, she’s amazing!

  57. Beverley Cousins
    April 5, 2016 / 6:00 pm

    My grandmother was my salt of the earth and my rock, she brought me up,looked after my children when i went to work, cooked every meal and picked me up when feeling dowm!…She gave me the strength to carry on in this world..

  58. Rich Tyler
    April 5, 2016 / 10:47 am

    My nan, she’s 93, proper northen women, still active!

  59. April 5, 2016 / 6:47 am

    My Mum-in-Law has been my inspiration over the years- she helped me when my children were born, my Mum had died quite a few years ago so when I was pregnant she offered to come & stay with us after the boys were born to take care of me, she cooked and shopped and let me take care of my boys – and didn’t interfere, she was – and is, wonderful.
    If/when my boys settle down I hope I can be like her, supportive but not interfering,

  60. Keshia Esgate
    April 4, 2016 / 9:35 pm

    My mum..she didn’t have much money but baked and decorated my wedding cake and make my five bridesmaids dresses! She did the same for my brother’s wedding too! She is amazing and very talented! #SheHelped

  61. Jess Mary
    April 4, 2016 / 5:44 am

    The most inspirational woman in my life is my grandma, I’ve always loved the way she takes care of the ones who are precious to her. She loves unconditionally, she’s a good listener and she gives the best advice in the world! I love her so much x

  62. Gill Mitchell
    April 3, 2016 / 10:52 pm

    My Grandma, who sadly passed away last year. She lost her site 20 years ago but did not let it beat her and continued to live a full life, remaining in her own home. She helped at age concern and many other charities, despite being more in need than some of those she was giving her time for. She had so much strength of character and zest for life, nothing phased her and she always battled through.

  63. Vicky Varley
    April 3, 2016 / 8:55 pm

    I’d have to say my mam, she’s just perfect and always there for me through the good and the bad 🙂

  64. Rebecca Austerberry
    April 3, 2016 / 5:31 pm

    Does Anne Frank count – read her diary whilst a young child and it inspired me to remain strong through life no matter what obstacles happen to you.

  65. Ema J Lowe
    April 1, 2016 / 10:10 pm

    my grand nan, was always there for me.

  66. Becci cleary
    March 30, 2016 / 8:50 pm

    My partners nan got cancer at 85….previous to that she was a strong determined lady….when she got it she did the waver. She was given 6-9 months to live, 7 months after she first found the lump. 9 days after she was given the prognosis she was getting sicker. She was living with my partners sisters at the time so I told her I would stay there the night and stay up through the night so she didn’t have to keep one ear open for her Nan and she could have a good night’s sleep. That night Nan really perked up and was laughing and joking and scooping ice cream up and sucking it off her fingers…I couldn’t wait for everyone to see her the next morning……
    Around 8am she got really tired and fell asleep….she didn’t really come round again and that night was given 24 hours to live…the next day at 1.20pm…11 days after her 6-9month prognosis she passed away. I realised I had gotten the ‘best’ of her that night and if I hadn’t have been there all night next to her bed would she have been lonely? Because of this #SheHelped me realise just how many people go through this on a day to day basis and how much of a shortage we have in the area for home help/Palliative Care nurses – I am now a Marie Curie nurse in training!

  67. angela jones
    March 29, 2016 / 9:22 pm

    My Mum, who sadly passed away 16 months ago will be the only inspirational lady in my whole life! She was diagnosed with cancer and given weeks to live, yet never cried once or complained when she became bed ridden and I nursed her at home. Whenever I cried she would tell me off and say she was having none of it. I miss her so much, but if I can gain some of her strength then I know she would be proud of me.

  68. Kate Knight
    March 29, 2016 / 4:57 pm

    My mum is the most inspirational woman I know, she is so strong and kind

  69. March 29, 2016 / 2:08 pm

    My mum is inspirational, no matter what life throws at her she keeps on carrying on

  70. Amy Lee
    March 29, 2016 / 11:57 am

    Your grandma sounds like she was such an amazing woman 🙂 My mum is the most amazing woman that I know as when i was 18 I became seriously ill and she was there by my side for 4 years while I fought to get better. She fed me, carried me up the stairs to the bathroom and refused to go on holiday without me as she didn’t want me to be left with someone other than her. I have now recovered and can never thank her enough. I just hope I will be as loving a mother as her when then time comes.

  71. Kay Panayi
    March 28, 2016 / 6:14 pm

    Has to be my mum I would never of got through my last labour without her or the other two she was so calm and collected even when things were going wrong X

  72. Nat thomason
    March 28, 2016 / 3:54 pm

    My mum has always been there for me as for years I’ve struggled with bi-polar two breakdowns and three children . In jan she was diagnosed with advanced ovarian cancer . She’s fighting it as best she can I just hope I can be there for her like she was for me .

  73. Sue C
    March 28, 2016 / 12:10 pm

    Great story! My inspiration isn’t just from one woman…it’s the way women collectively help eachother. I live in a great community where is mums all really support one another with raising our children. Most of us are juggling what often seems impossible…, kids, activities, extended family and without support from other women it would be so difficult. It’s a good job I have my women friends!

  74. aaron broad
    March 28, 2016 / 11:23 am

    My mum is always there for me, sacrificed alot to raise me by herself

  75. March 27, 2016 / 10:04 pm

    My friend emily, my best friend infact. Whatever she decides to do in life she does 100%. Move to a new country without knowing the language to work as a childrens nurse? yep. Help me when I need it? yep/ Help out her 7 brothers and sisters when they need it? yep.

  76. March 27, 2016 / 12:43 pm

    My mum is my hero, it was a time when we struggled and mum had to work on 3 different jobs so that we were fed and dressed. I think she did a pretty good job!

  77. Kristy Brown
    March 26, 2016 / 11:06 pm


  78. Lyndsay-Rose
    March 26, 2016 / 3:22 pm

    My aunt is my inspiration. She has so much to deal with on a daily basis and never stresses about it. Nor does she ask for anything in return.

  79. Sophie Foulds
    March 26, 2016 / 12:23 pm

    My inspiration woman is my nanna, always putting everyone before her. Even in her late 70s, she will always be an inspiration to me.

  80. Emily Clark
    March 25, 2016 / 11:22 pm

    MY inspirational woman is my boss at work. She’s in a hugely stressful job – head of a whole department – but she’s young, she’s positive, and she’s such a fair manager. The best I’ve ever had. And she makes my working life so much better than it’s ever been! I used to get stressed at work, but her management has helped me enormously.

  81. Solange
    March 24, 2016 / 10:27 pm

    The best thing about my Mum is her bravery and tenacity. She has been through so much in her life, including being left a single mother when my Dad died. She never complains, and is always there for anyone. She’s never got any money because she will invariably give her last pound to someone who needs it. My dream is to be in a financial position to look after her for a change. I’m not ashamed to say that she is my heroine and the person I look up to the most in this world. No matter that I am an adult and a mother myself. She’s not perfect, I know that, like the fact that every piece of advice she has ever given me (especially in regards to parenting) has
    been 100% spot on is pretty annoying.

  82. March 24, 2016 / 6:19 pm

    My mum is inspirational! When she was in her 50s, she jacked in her full time job and decided to become a consultant instead, taking on short term contracts. She’s earning loads more money as a result and is much happier – it’s proof that no matter your age, there’s still always time to do things differently! I followed in her footsteps and changed industries completely – rather than working in insurance I’m now a food writer, and I couldn’t be happier!

    March 23, 2016 / 1:29 pm

    my mum who is always there for me and is an inspiration to me to always keep going when times are hard

  84. Maureen findley
    March 22, 2016 / 3:29 pm

    my mother single handedly raised six children and made sure each of them had a wonderful education.

  85. Emma Gibson
    March 22, 2016 / 11:54 am

    My mum has always taught me to be positive in times of hardship.

  86. Anthony Harrington
    March 21, 2016 / 11:10 pm

    #SheHelped My late Mother-in-Law was a fantastic lady, she was an inspiration to me, such a kind,genuine, sincere and very brave lady, I miss her so very much.

  87. Leona S Fisher
    March 21, 2016 / 10:34 pm

    My wonderful Mum!
    She created a business from scratch with no help from anyone else (she wanted to do this herself) making the most wonderful knitted/crochet hats and other items and then patterns too. Three years on she’s made a real successful business for herself which inspires me to try myself. She proves with hard work and belief in yourself you can achieve your dreams! She’s truly an inspiration!

  88. Soph H
    March 21, 2016 / 6:51 pm

    My mum because she keeps on going regardless of what tough situations she faces.

  89. Siobhan Davis
    March 21, 2016 / 6:30 pm

    My mum inspires me every single day, She has been with me through everything and truly is my best friend.
    My mum always has a smile on her face and never looks down on anyone.
    She is so inspirational despite having kidney failure she always remains positive and enjoys every minute of life.

    As her job she volunteers to get people into rehabs around the UK that are batterling addictions and 99.9% of the time she manages to get the funding and changes peoples lives for the better.

    As well as being so special to me and my sons she is very special to lots of other families too as with the help she provides to others it makes there quality of live so much better.

    My mum is a remarkable mum, Nanny and friend to others and I love her very very much x

  90. March 21, 2016 / 5:02 pm

    There have been many inspirational women in my life including my mum and nan. One of the other ladies who stood out as being totally inspirational to me was my midwife when I gave birth to my son. She gave me the strength and confidence to be the mum I am today!

  91. Naz M
    March 21, 2016 / 1:24 pm

    Wow, your grandma was an amazing woman. I’m glad you had her in your life.

    My mum inspires me everyday, I’ve been dealing with depression and anxiety problems since I was a young child (about 20 years I guess?) and she was and still is my rock and my best friend. I only went to my GP a few years ago because I couldn’t stand it anymore and she went with me and held my hand. We had a difficult relationship at times during my teenage years mainly because of my mood swings and insecurities and I wish I realised how much she did for me all those years ago, I don’t know what I’d do without her.

  92. Ann Robinson
    March 21, 2016 / 1:09 pm

    The women who currently inspires me is a women called Shelly Roche who runs a voluntary organisation called TinyKittens ( She rescues stray and feral mama cats so that they can have their kittens in safety. The kittens are then spayed/neutered and adopted out as are the stray mama cats who are usually used to humans and friendly. Tinykittens also feeds stray cats in a local colony, as well as feeding them they also trap, neuter and return (TNR) the cats so they can reduce the population, they also rescue any help any cats with health issue, they also provide some shelter and toys for the cats to play with. TinyKittens has recently had a lot of success socialising feral cats well past the age thought possible. All of this can be seen at

  93. leanne weir
    March 21, 2016 / 12:41 pm

    My mum is a star. She’s had such a difficult life but is always smiling and positive regardless x

  94. Hannah P
    March 21, 2016 / 12:36 pm

    My grandma is an angel – always helping others and putting those she loves before herself.

  95. rachel h
    March 21, 2016 / 12:27 pm

    My Auntie Alison was an amazing woman – she never let life get her down and always followed her dreams now matter how much difficulty and risk she faced in the process. I wish I could be more like her – I am risk averse and don’t cope well with change . If she were still around maybe she would help and encourage me but sadly she died in an accident when I was 17 and she just 36 – I miss her every day but she will always be part of my life.

  96. Alica
    March 20, 2016 / 8:07 pm

    I have been inspired by my amazing Mum who sadly passed away last July aged 81. She was a formidable woman! A strong lady with opinions you couldn’t change and a heart of gold. She made me the strong independent woman I am today with her Victorian values and firm beliefs.

  97. Olivia M
    March 20, 2016 / 2:57 am

    I’m severely ill, and as I turned age 18, my mum had to give up work to become my full time carer. She’s my mum, carer, best friend, chef, therapist, cleaner, chauffeur, advisor, bank manager, I don’t know what I’d do without hermxx

  98. March 19, 2016 / 6:06 pm

    my mum as she always fights my corner 🙂

  99. Kelly Donald-Pattullo
    March 15, 2016 / 9:49 pm

    My grandma was such an inspirational woman. She worked So hard helping others. I hope i have done her proud x

  100. Eva Vida
    March 15, 2016 / 11:59 am

    My 81 year old Mum who lives alone now in a big house and even though she has arthritis and difficulties to walk,she goes for swimming every week with our relative in to the town.She is an inspiration for me

  101. Gwyn Sharps
    March 15, 2016 / 11:04 am

    My mum, because she lives by the true values in life which include kindness, love and a pure heart.

  102. March 14, 2016 / 9:02 pm

    my mum is beautiful inside and out. so hard working, and has had a tough start to life but continues to strive for more

  103. Andrew Petrie
    March 14, 2016 / 8:11 pm

    Emily Pankhurst. She is widely associated with the suffragettes of course, which in itself guarantees her immortality but She was also a huge influence on Women’s efforts to help the war effort in 1914 – 1918. If only there were more like her.

  104. Hannah Scudder
    March 14, 2016 / 3:19 pm

    My step mum is an amazing woman. I first met her when I was 6 and she has always been very good with me. My father died when I was 10 and since then she has always continued to make an effort with me and to really see me even though it has been 13 years since dad died and she has since got married. I really appreciate it.

  105. Dawn Gould
    March 14, 2016 / 1:26 pm

    My Mum is an amazing woman. She had me quite late on in life and around the time I was born my Grandfather had a serious stroke. She didn’t hesitate to take him in because nobody else would and she couldn’t bear to see him in a care home, despite the fact that she had a baby to care for too. He lived with us until a further stroke took his life when I was about 8. To this day we think that living with us gave him that extra lease of life to see his baby Grandaughter grow up.

  106. Natalie Crossan
    March 14, 2016 / 12:57 pm

    My mum is inspirational because she’s battled lupus since I was born, raised me on her own and as an adult, she’s been a huge source of support as a mother and a grandmother to her grand child xx

  107. ElizM
    March 14, 2016 / 11:19 am

    At 9 years old my daughter was already inspirational. I broke my foot that summer when we were moving house and was on crutches all summer. I live alone with my kids and our new house had the kitchen a long way away from the dining room. It took me 20 minutes on the first morning to lay out the breakfast things. The second morning I came down and she had done everything except deal with the hot kettle which she knew she mustn’t touch. All summer long she looked after everything for me that I couldn’t do. Completely unselfish.

  108. Freya Knudsen
    March 13, 2016 / 10:38 pm

    I have been lucky to have lots of strong women in my life and I think that’s helped me to make some important decisions in my life and understand my value. That I need to follow my hopes and dreams and what I want for a career. Those women are my nan and mum 🙂 both wonderful in their own ways

  109. Clare Munden
    March 13, 2016 / 9:08 pm

    Goodness me, your grandma sounds incredible that moved me to tears. I lost my Nana in October, she suffered 5 strokes and 9 bouts of pneumonia in just two years. She fought until she couldn’t anymore. She inspires me to be determined and succeed

  110. March 13, 2016 / 7:50 pm

    I find it really hard to say this, but unfortunately I haven’t really had the strong influence of a particular woman in my life. However in recent years it has started to change for me, and there are two lovely ladies who come to mind for different reasons; my counsellor, and my friend Fiona, both of whom have provided me in their own ways with inspiration, confidence and direction that had been missing previously.

  111. laura banks
    March 13, 2016 / 5:27 pm

    mine is my mum even though she was ill all of my life she still made sure i had the best childhood and tried to do every thing the others mums did

  112. March 13, 2016 / 4:25 pm

    For me, the woman who has left a lasting impact on me and who I carry in my head and my heart everyday is my maternal grandmother.

    She died almost 18 years ago. This means I have lived the same amount of time without her now as I lived with her in my life. How is it then that I still remember everything about her? Those memories are as vivid now as they were the day she died.

    Did she have an extraordinary career? No she did not. Was she famous? No she was not. Was she an international peacekeeper? No she was not. She was however, many wonderful things and above all, she was a strong matriarch.

    She had so many qualities I thought were vital for a woman to have. She was fiercely independent, she was determined, she was loving and caring, she would help anyone, she was a fixer, she was honest, she was witty and she was the most awesome multitasker! She did everything at lightning speed and never sat down.

    I have lived the last 18 years without her, thinking what would she think, what would she do, what would she say about so many things. Whilst of course I have my own thoughts on all of these situations, it helps to have her voice in my head to debate the tricky stuff.

  113. Nichole
    March 13, 2016 / 12:18 pm

    My dear friend Abby inspires me to be a stronger and more loving woman. Abby and her family have had some unfortunate events in the past four years. Her young husband, was left disabled and unable to work after an accident which has made their family finances extremely tight. Through their struggles she has remained a strong follower of Christ, an incredible mother and wife, and an amazing friend. She inspires me with her continuous positive outlook on life and her strong faith.

  114. Jane Berrow
    March 13, 2016 / 10:03 am

    My Mum always encouraged and loved me. She suffered many years of ill health but we always enjoyed our time together. A wonderful woman who is sadly missed.

  115. ELISHA
    March 13, 2016 / 12:37 am

    My nan, has 8 children many grand kids (including me) and great-grandkids. She was the one that was and is there when the mother was not interested, she knew what motherhood was about and has taken all 3/4 generations on and is still standing strong like an ox, still has her wits about her and does not take no prisoners.. I love this woman to pieces.

  116. rebecca beesley
    March 13, 2016 / 12:11 am

    My best friend from university, jackie, was an incredible woman – so strong, brave and not afraid to speak the truth, yet also vulnerable, caring and kind at the same time. she lost a 3 year battle to cancer in december but she has influenced me so much in my life that i am forever grateful to her.

  117. March 12, 2016 / 11:03 pm

    Your grandma sounds like a wonderful woman! I think I’d have to choose my nan too, she had such a huge impact on my life. She would always listen to me, and treat me seriously, and encouraged me so much. I miss her lots! x

  118. Karl Borowy
    March 12, 2016 / 10:05 pm


  119. Hazel Rea
    March 12, 2016 / 8:17 pm

    I was doing a commercial teacher’s course and one of the lecturers was the most amazing teacher. She was always dressed immaculately and her hair and makeup was always perfect. She demanded excellence and managed to make us achieve a much higher standard than we thought we could. She told me that my work was much more mature than she would expect and that she felt I could achieve a lot. I subsequently went on to do an Honours Degree and a Masters in Developmental Psychology – and I certainly wouldn’t have had the confidence to do that if it hadn’t been for her.

  120. iain maciver
    March 12, 2016 / 7:32 pm

    my wife who has helped me through illness no more to say I owe her so much

  121. Bev
    March 12, 2016 / 7:05 pm

    A lady named Julie. She was my breast cancer care nurse and she made life bearable.

  122. Kerry Locke
    March 12, 2016 / 6:56 pm

    My mum is the most inspirational women I know …. Independent, hard working with enough love and forgiveness for the entire world. She is why I am the women I am today.

  123. Carol Thomas
    March 12, 2016 / 5:56 pm

    My Mom. She taught me family was all. She stood by me and my 4 (her Grandchildren) emotionally and financially (to her detriment at times) helping me to bring them up as I was in a very dysfunctional marriage to the ex and biological Dad of my 4. We finally fled domestic violence. Mom was there for us all the dark days of the aftermath that went to places that would fill a book and right throughout the system of this country.
    When I met and married my husband (the man I have been with for 13 years now) Mom started to relax. She was 73 then. When we married in 2007 my Mom was like ”phew” my work is done now. She passed away 3 years late. Mom was diagnosed with alzheimers in 2008 the year after our marriage.

    Mom was a quiet tough strong lady who was ”the wind beneath our wings” and we still miss her

  124. ashleigh allan
    March 12, 2016 / 5:52 pm

    My mum is my inspiration – she is such a fab mum and always there for me and my family. I just hope I can be as good a mum to my own children!

  125. March 12, 2016 / 5:15 pm

    My Grandma too, for different reasons you have (and what an incredible story by the way). She turns 92 this year and she was a working woman back in the days when women didn’t work too much. She was a teacher and went back to work after marrying which was unheard of in the 1940s. She also went back to work after having her daughters which she faced a huge amount of criticism for from her work colleagues. A full time working mum was rare in the 1950s. She went on to become a headmistress and I remember her as a bit headmistressy with us at times! She’s a clever woman and after her retirement she did a Phd. She’s always been an inspiration to me.

  126. Leeanne Clifford
    March 12, 2016 / 4:48 pm

    My mum. She had breast cancer the first time at 32 then again at 58 but sadly passed away when she was 60.
    She taught me how to appreciate how beauty is only skin deep and to let your inner beauty shine, that scars aren’t ugly and are part of what makes us strong

  127. Sinead ORourke
    March 12, 2016 / 4:21 pm

    My mum broke her hand and she just carried on without any painkillers

  128. claire griffiths
    March 12, 2016 / 4:20 pm

    such a nice post .
    the most inspirational woman in my life as always been my grandma she as always been the one person that as been there for me through all the bad and good times. She was like a second mum to me she had me at the weekend and took me on holiday every year , she taught me right from wrong and learnt me good values

  129. Jennifer Haden
    March 12, 2016 / 3:02 pm

    My babysitter was so kind to me while I was growing up. She knew I was from a rough, abusive family, so she tried it make life a little brigther for me. She always made sure I had healthy, good food to eat at her house. A nice, warm bath. She would randomely give me a gift and always on my birthday. She played with me. And told me I was loved x

  130. Tracy K Nixon
    March 12, 2016 / 2:07 pm

    An inspirational woman in my life was my college tutor – she supported me during my nursery nursing diploma and helped me make the decision to go a step further and train to be a primary school teacher at Uni!

  131. March 12, 2016 / 1:56 pm

    The inspirational lady in my life is my girlfriend, because any one who can put up with me is inspirational.

  132. Sandra Bald
    March 12, 2016 / 1:28 pm

    Doreen is a swimming instructor who has taught over 13,000 people to swim in Milton Keynes over the last 35 years and was still doing so at the age of 75. She has taught 3 generations of people to swim often with entire families having been taught to swim.
    I know that she has provided one on one swimming lessons for at least 2 disabled children in Milton Keynes which she refuses to take any money for. The lessons have been on a Friday evening and Doreen willingly gave up her own time to do this. One of these children is my 5 year old daughter, Alexandra who has Down Syndrome. Alexandra now attends Doreen’s Quest and has recently achieved her 100 metre swimming badge. She is extremely proud of this and tells everybody about it and at every opportunity she shows off her 100 metre badge and certificate.
    As parents of a child with learning disabilities, Doreen has truly exceeded our expectations over the last year or so and we are so grateful to Doreen for her unstinting support and commitment. She has really gone that extra mile for our family. Doreen is admired and respected by so many people, both young and old, able bodied and physically and mentally disabled. She is head and shoulders above other swimming instructors and gives her time, expertise and wholehearted support to anyone irrespective of their age, social standing or abilities.
    She is inspirational and has made a huge impact on the lives of so many people in Milton Keynes, including my own daughter and our family.
    Doreen has now taken a well earned break & retired from teaching swimming.

  133. Harline parkin
    March 12, 2016 / 1:04 pm

    I never really liked school has a child but one teacher changed that and i looked forward to her lesson every week. She made me feel someone she tried to learn me to sing I still can’t! But she gave me a small singing part in a play I’ve never forgot that teacher

  134. Lisa Rowsell
    March 12, 2016 / 1:01 pm

    My childhood physiotherapist who helped me so much with all my joint problems, and cheered me up whenever I was feeling down. If it wasn’t for her I wouldn’t be able to walk properly today.

  135. Kelly Hemmings
    March 12, 2016 / 10:19 am

    My inspirational women is my friend and colleague Mandy. She’s a full time midwife and absolutely works her sox off. She runs a house with 4 children and is a amazing mum and no matter how busy her life is she will always have time for you despite struggling with depression. She is beautiful inside out and I honestly don’t know how she does it.

  136. March 12, 2016 / 10:11 am

    *hugs* what a wonderful woman!

    I’m lucky to be surrounded by strong and amazing women, however the most inspirational has to be my aunt and Midwife. She went from a messy home life with her parents to marrying my uncle, having three children (one with Aspegers syndrome and severe bipolar depression) and changing her life by becoming one of the most wonderful midwives in my area. She delivered all three of my babies and I wouldn’t have had it any other way. She now works with pregnant teenagers who are in difficult circumstances, giving them the help and support they need to give their babies the best start in life. X

  137. March 12, 2016 / 2:39 am

    Such a lovely post, certainly tugged my heart strings.

    My motivational lady has got to be my Mum. She raised three children pretty much on her own, she worked her socks off and she never let us go without. She’s a great Mother, a fantastic Nanna and my best friend #SheHelped

  138. March 10, 2016 / 2:13 pm

    Your story has actually made me well up honey. I’m now crying big fat tears thinking about the bond between you and your much-loved grandma. It’s made me think about my own great grandmother, who was such an important role-model in my life. She was tiny, and even my petite self was taller than her from the age of 11. She would sit with us for hours and hours chatting, loving us, listening to us. Thinking back, and with more experience, I now realise how difficultl her life must have been, living through 2 wars, giving birth to nine children and losing three in infancy. She didn’t have it easy: my greatgrandad drank and gambled, so much so that they lost they bakery, and all other possessions when she was in her 40s. She would never complain. She was a rock. She passed away at 90 years of age, when I was 17 and I miss her terribly. I still ‘talk’ to her when I go through difficult times. Xxx

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