Terminally ill mother helping young daughters to pick out the prom, wedding dresses

A terminally ill mother-of-two has taken of her young daughters prom and wedding dress shopping – because they are not around to see the great days.


A terminally ill mother-of-two has taken of her young daughters prom and wedding dress shopping – because they are not around to see the great days.

Dawn Wilson, 34, has been given less than a year to live; while, in a cruel twist of fate, the girls’ dad, Ian, will also be the death within a few months if he is up against the late stages of Huntington’s disease.

Devastated that her children will soon be orphans, the Dawn, of Hengoed, South Wales, has gone on “memory days” with Imogen, 12, and Madeline, eight, ticking off the important milestones in the future that they will never get to be a part of.


The couple had Ian’s devastating diagnosis as the Dawn, a former teacher, was only 26.

Huntington’s disease is a disorder of the brain that affect movement, judgment, and behavior. The situation is getting worse in time.

Six years later, after their marriage had ended, Dawn found a lump in her breast and was diagnosed with the stage of breast cancer, which eventually spread to her lymph nodes.

Dawn said: “I know that none of us will ever see of our beautiful daughters grow up, so I wanted to create beautiful reminders of all the things that I will miss out on with them.

“I have a memory of the day with each of them separately where they got to choose the wedding dress that they like, and their prom dresses.

“We even went and chose for their first cars and first homes. It was very emotional, but I’m so glad that we did.

“I’m proud of them, they are very special girls and I love them. I hope the best for them and I’m so sorry, I will not be there for them on these days.

“It is so difficult. No one makes themselves, they leave their children before they grow up.


“I want them so much of me and so many beautiful memories of me as I can.

“Their father Ian is very, very sick. The time will come very soon when he can’t acknowledge our daughters.

“He is too poor to take part in one of the fund-raising now that he is in the advanced stages.

“We have about the same life expectancy, which is really something of a few months to a year. I am looking for about 11 months.

“The girls have split up about everything, but really they are fantastic.”

Shortly before her diagnosis in 2014, Dawn, went out with a new partner, Stephen Wilson, 34, whom she married in 2016.

Steve has now promised to take care of Imogen and Madeline after they’re gone.

Dawn and Ian will report on parental control, so that Steve can be their legal guardian. He also has a young daughter of his own, Yvie.

“What hurts the most is that I’m not for the girls when they checked for both the cancer and Huntington’s disease genes,” admitted Dawn.

“When their father gets sick, I told them everything they needed to know was that I will always be here to nurse. But I can’t do that now, and I find it terribly difficult.”

She added: “For me, it’s about giving the girls the chance to bond with Steve.

“He is relatively new in their life, and I don’t want Steve to be regarded as a step in the father – I want him to be seen as a third of the parents.


“He’s been absolutely great.”

Dawn believed until a little over a month ago she was in remission, but the cancer is back.

She had a double mastectomy, radiotherapy, chemotherapy, and other clinical studies – but then she discovered another lump.

Dawn immediately went to the hospital and was told that it had returned and is incurable.

Two of Dawn’s friends, Rebecca Paginton and Marie Sidoli, set up a JustGiving Page with the aim of raising £10,000 to help the family with the making of beautiful memories.

So far it has collected more than $ 5,200.

Dawn said that she was “overwhelmed” by the enormous generosity shown by friends and strangers.

In spite of her horror ordeal, encouraged by the unwavering support of family and friends, brave Dawn is the refusal to give up.

She is using the time she has left to raise awareness of breast cancer and to urge other women not to ignore any abnormal changes.

Dawn said: “I really believe this was to avoid completely, because I went to my DOCTOR as soon as I found the lump. It was about the size of a pea when I found it.

“After 10 weeks, that is the time that I waited until my scan, it covered a 12cm area.

“Cancer has stolen so much from me and my family, but I am determined to fight for as long as I can.”

To make a donation, visit Dawn’s JustGiving page.

This article first appeared on The Sun.

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