Mother of three starts skincare business WHILST undergoing Cancer Treatment!

by Ian Gabbidon on Aug 19, 2022

Edith Gabbidon in front of Iuvo Skincare stall

How does a mother of three with no formal profession other than being a housewife suddenly start her own skincare business WHILST undergoing Cancer Treatment? PART 1


This is one of the questions I have asked myself ever since my mother passed away in July 2020. It's strange because I was always involved in the business but from somewhat of a distance. The levels of involvement must have been unreal for my mom, all I can imagine is that her passion drove her each and every day.

We are going back to 2010 now, I was studying for my Master's in Architecture. From what I can remember I was in Birmingham having just come back from Ghana after a very unsuccessful Part 1 work experience search.

I had never really had much luck with my studies, I mean I LOVED Architecture and still do, but I was not a natural at it so when completing my work I knew I always had to work extra hard at what I did just to get average grades. Now going back to my mother I decided to complete my master's in Birmingham after my father got the opportunity to work away in Amsterdam for better financial prospects. My two little sisters would have been one and three years old. Both myself and my mother worked hard on raising my two bigheaded sisters, I mean more so my mom but from how I remember it, it was a joint effort but it wasn't haha!! My mom was a soldier but it became apparent that things were not quite right. She would ask me to finish University early to pick up the girls or come home and cook as she was too tired. Going to the hospital for appointments quite regularly.

My mother was basically going through her Chemotherapy without my knowledge which I am very sure is ill-advised! My father against my mother's wishes told me what was going on, and I was in shock, not at the news, but at the fact that my mother chose not to tell me. She was such a private woman but we were so close! Anyway, once she knew that I knew it was a lot easier to help her and accommodate my studies along with our home requirements and the girls. Mom had her good, bad, and really bad days and she started to "look sick" I say "look sick" with quotation marks as only her close family would have been able to notice at first. She wore gloves and fully covered her skin in the summertime as the Radiotherapy worked its dark-colored die through to her fingertips, hands, and feet. Her face got darker too. I remember her telling me that I just want to feel gorgeous again, not being so fussy about the sickness or loss of appetite at all, she just wanted to look herself again.

Once her multiple rounds of therapy had taken a pause she started using a natural butter that was recommended to her. It was Shea Butter. Now at the time, I had no idea or understanding of this product or what it could do. I just saw how my mother would layer it all over her body at night time and in the mornings gradually her skin looked more supple, lighter, and much more hydrated.

Now my mom made me promise that my studies would always come first and that I made sure I did what I needed to do regardless of her needs and aspirations. So I did. My father cut his contract short and I graduated and went to China to work. From that point on I realised that my mother did not want to be known as only a mother of three, she aspired for much more.