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The Joseph sisters Sherrelle, left and T’Chelle, right, with their mother Ria Jones talk to the Guardian at their home in Sangre Grande yesterday.

Jesse Ramdeo

For those waiting only on Mother’s Day to relish the moments with the woman who has cared for you unconditionally, don’t!

It’s the advice of Sherrelle Joseph, 22, who has watched her mother reel in pain for years but never allowed her love for her daughters to fade.

Ria Jones, 49, has been everything to Sherrelle and Tchelle all their lives, in an interview at the family’s Picton Road Sangre Grande home.

Sherrelle recounted how courageous and inspiring her mother has always been, especially in the face of countless obstacles, “resilience, inspiration, she is the epitome of motivation. This woman motivated me a lot, I wouldn’t be who I am today without her.”

Seven years ago, however, Ria’s life and by extension her daughters changed drastically. The accounting assistant would be diagnosed with stage two breast cancer, the news, while terrifying, trumpeted the start of a battle they were all ready to win. Months of gruelling chemotherapy was followed by a mastectomy, but just as she thought she was out of the woods, Ria suffered a relapse in 2017, this time being diagnosed with stage four breast cancer which spread to her brain, lymph nodes, chest and skin.

Despite her prognosis Ria continued to be a beacon of hope for her daughters.

“Some days she asks me to walk through to Grande with her because she feeling so dizzy, her nails will get black, her teeth will get weak, yet still, she was going to work every day because she wanted to see about her girls, so that was another challenge, having cancer, doing chemotherapy, and still pushing on.”

According to Sherrelle, cancer has left her mother a shadow of who she was before, but her jovial spirit sines on, “she won’t ask she would get it done and it was a challenge for her when she couldn’t walk anymore, her speech became slurred, now it’s pretty bad.”

It is said that a mother’s love endures through all and it is something Sherrelle and her sister do not take for granted, “every day after work I would be here, get home at 8…and start the day all over again..I am always here with her for me it’s like Mother’s Day because I don’t know when I’d lose this beauty.”

While she already has plans to make this year’s Mother’s Day celebrations special despite the curveball thrown by COVID-19, she has this special message for her superhero, “you have been a great mother to us, we would not be the girls we are today without you, you enforcing all your beliefs and everything upon us, we can never repay you for that. you did so well mummy.”

True to her superhero form, Ria was able to sum up her unconditional love for her girls, look them in the eye and say, “I love you too.” Sherrelle is now encouraging people to mend broken relationships especially with their mothers and shower them with love and adoration while they are blessed with life.