Shropshire Star

Poppy facing her adversities has helped me strive to be my best, Shropshire mother says

When Vicky Evans sees her 15 year old daughter, Poppy overcoming the adversities life has dealt her, it makes her determined to strive harder in life herself.

Vicky Evans with husband Karl and Poppy, left and Lyla

As a mother to not one by two strong teenage daughters Vicky, from St Martins, says all she wants is for them to be happy - and for her to be a good role model.

And Poppy and younger sister Lyla, are proud of their mum, who has raised many thousands of pounds for the Hope House Hospice, where Poppy enjoys respite care.

She also works full time and is the founder of an online women's running and support group, Girls On The Run.

Her eldest daughter was diagnosed with Dravet syndrome just before her fifth birthday. The rare condition that causes life-threatening seizures means Poppy also faces other difficulties in her day-to-day life.

"She definitely changed my life," Vicky said.

"She made me want to do the best I can in life. Her adversities have motivated me to strive that much harder in my own life."

Vicky admits that having a child with Dravet's Syndrome has not been easy and she and husband Karl often have to 'tag team' their lives, one concentrating on 13-year-old Lyla, the other on Poppy.

"I have lost friends along the way - it is not easy to take Poppy places and so social life and holidays as a family are limited.

"But I have gained so many more friends, and so much more from having two, strong daughters, now young women. I hope I can be a good role model to them and encourage them to be healthy, mentally and physically."

"There is lots of positivity - Poppy loves dressing up and I make sure that Lyla and I have mum and daughter time with trips to the theatre."

Lyla, a talented artist, says she is proud of her mum.

"She is the strongest and best female character in my life," she said.

"She inspires me that as well as having time for both her kids she works and is so involved in the running group. I love our mum and Lyla time and love helping with her fundraisers."

Poppy said: "I like that mum works at college and she does first aid at college. I like it when we are in the garden, and when we make pizza. I like the summer holidays in the garden."

Vicky worries that mothers stress too much that they do not do enough for their children.

"I think all mums get guilt, we beat ourselves up too much. We think life has to be perfect. But kids don't want perfect, they just want to know that you are there and that you have time for them. It doesn't matter if they have chicken nuggets and chips three times a week occasionally.

"If they are happy then I am happy. All you can do is love them and guide them. If I know they are safe then my work is done and I can sleep at night."

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