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This 12-year-old caregiver to his mom experiences the holiday season differently each year

This young boy has a lot of responsibilities on his shoulders at a young age after his mother had a stroke.

This 12-year-old caregiver to his mom experiences the holiday season differently each year
Representative Cover Image Source: Pexels | Sassen, BBC

The holiday season does not pass the same for everyone. For 12-year-old Ash, Christmas holidays go by a tad bit differently than those of his peers. The reason behind it is rather sad. Ever since Ash turned five, he has taken up the role of caregiver for his mother after she suffered a stroke. "When I was two, I remember my mom mumbling her words and losing her words and then her arms dropped. She got taken to the hospital and I didn't see her for three to four weeks," the little boy told the BBC.

Representative Image Source: Pexels | Andrea Piacquadio
Representative Image Source: Pexels | Andrea Piacquadio

Throughout all these years, the dutiful son has not only provided reassurance to his mom, but he has also been doing all the necessary physical tasks around their home in Wellingborough, Northamptonshire. Ash's mother, Sharon, revealed that he always makes her a cup of tea and also assists her mentally and physically. "If I get stressed out then he is there for me. It is a lot for me," Sharon told the outlet.

But all his homely responsibilities have not prevented Ash from maintaining good attendance at school and even winning a prize for it despite it not being easy. "Sometimes I don't want to go to school to make sure my mum's okay and make sure she doesn't have a funny turn and fall. Sometimes I just can't stop thinking about her in lessons, when I was in primary school I cried because of how much I missed her," he continued.

Representative Image Source: Pexels | Sergey Platonov
Representative Image Source: Pexels | Sergey Platonov

When it is time for holidays like Christmas, the responsibility to put out decorations in the house and purchase food for the family has fallen on the shoulders of little Ash. "He made a wreath for me, and that's my Christmas present," Sharon mentioned. "It was a wreath I made out of real branches and real holly. It took two hours," Ash added. The young man also aspires to become an actor when he grows up and often turns his house into a theater to entertain his mother.

"I have a rehearsal space, which is in the back room and the front room, where my mum sits, is my stage and sometimes I put on pantos for her and musicals and shows that I've created. Recently, I've done Aladdin and it went well because we have this little perching stool in the back room and I put many pillars on it to make it seem like a magic carpet flying through the sky," he shared. Ash has faced added difficulties as well since his father also suffered a stroke in March 2023.

Representative Image Source: Pexels | Gustavo Fring
Representative Image Source: Pexels | Gustavo Fring

"It's going to be different this year because we can't afford a lot in the house, but Ash doesn't mind. We're going to make Christmas just for the boys," Sharon said. Ash is also planning to pay a visit to his Grandma who is in a care home and he won't be forgetting about going to see his granddad as well. "I'm going to see my Grandad," Ash informed the outlet, "We've got a cross wreath and we're going to put it on his grave for him."

"I get very anxious and when I go on one, I do go on one - I won't let it go until I've had my say. He says 'take breaths, mum, take breaths' and calms me down. He's a good boy," Sharon revealed, adding that she might get a tad bit stressed during the holiday season but she has her loving son Ash by her side who is always there to help her cope with anything and always standing by her side as a strong support system.

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