'My mum is terminal so I’m asking her this list of questions before it’s too late.'

It's a sad truth that most people never say how we truly feel about a person until it's too late.

Often the nicest things said about people are at their funeral.

But Samantha Aimes-Costa, 32, is making sure that's not the case for her and her beloved mum, Susan. 

Susan, 65, was first diagnosed with cancer 17 years ago and, after overcoming it twice, she is now battling stage 4 cancer which has spread to her lymph nodes, stomach and lungs.

And so when Samantha came across a list of questions to ask your parent before it's too late, she took the opportunity to ask them. And in doing so, the Adelaide-based lash technician unwittingly brought comfort to millions of others when she shared the answers online.

WATCH: In her shoes, Lea's cancer story. Post continues below. 

Video via Mamamia

"I was taking Mum to Queenstown for a week in April — it has always been on her bucket list — and I came across the list of questions on TikTok to ask your parents, so I saved it," Samantha tells Mamamia

"I thought it'd be nice to have a glass of wine and ask her the questions. She was really happy to do it and she'd just gotten a new Lusta Hair wig... so I set up the camera sort of like a podcast. There was no pressure to her. But I never intended for it to be as big as it was."

The videos went viral on TikTok.

@keepingupwithsamandjesse Part 4/5 ❤️ questions to ask your parents before its too late. @Lusta Hair #cancer #motherdaughter #hairloss #wigs #stage4cancer ♬ original sound - Keeping Up With Sam & Jesse

Dressed in matching pink pyjamas, Samantha asked Susan, "What is your happiest memory of us?", "What was the moment you felt most proud of me?", "What were those first few days of motherhood like?" and "What do you want or wish most for me?"


In a video that got more than 2.9 million views, Samantha also asked, "What do you want me to remember after you're gone?"

And Susan’s answer was as poignant as it was gut-wrenching.

"How much I love you," she said simply. 

"Even though you can't see me, I'm in your heart, and if you ever question yourself, stand still for a minute and listen and it'll come to you. We're together in our hearts, they can never take that way.

"We don't die we just go to a different realm where you can't see me but I'm still in here," she continued, pointing to Samantha's heart. "I don't want to go, I want another 20 years of sass — look at me, I should still be climbing my mountains."

Samantha didn't expect the overwhelming response she got from thousands of strangers in the comments. 

Samantha and Susan on their Queenstown trip. Source: Supplied. 


Many wished they had done the same with their parents before they passed.

"Thank you so much for posting this. It's almost a little bit of healing for people like me who didn’t get to ask the questions. It felt like a message from my mum," one wrote follower. 

"My dad died last year suddenly from a out of the blue heart attack. He was only 51 and my best friend. I wish I had the chance to ask him these questions. Cherish every last minute," another said.

Others took the videos as a sign to ask their sick parent the same questions, which has given Samantha great comfort. "I can be down about our situation but there are so many people who never got the chance to do this because their parents declined too quickly or some people told me they were in denial and wished they had," Samantha said. 

The videos have now taken on a much more special meaning than she ever could've anticipated.

"I didn't expect [Mum] to be as raw and honest as she was, in a good way, obviously it's a very difficult conversation to have," Samantha said.

"I wasn't thinking about how much I would appreciate these videos later, but having these for myself is going to be so sentimental."

@keepingupwithsamandjesse Part 1/5 ❤️ questions to ask your parents before its too late. @Lusta Hair #cancer #motherdaughter #hairloss #wigs #stage4cancer ♬ original sound - Keeping Up With Sam & Jesse

Questions to ask your parents before it's too late.

Samantha shared the full list of questions she has asked so far as well as ones she plans to ask Susan:

  • What is your happiest memory of us?
  • What was the moment you felt most proud of me?
  • What were those first few days of motherhood like?
  • What do you want or wish most for me?” 
  • What do you want me to remember after you're gone?
  • What’s the nicest thing I've ever done for you?
  • Is there anything you wish you had done differently in your love life?
  • What were some of the happiest times of your life?
  • What were some of the most difficult times of your life?
  • In what ways do you hope I turn out like you? Or not like you?
  • Is there anything you regret not doing or learning?
  • What is something you wish you hadn't worried so much about?
  • What makes you feel at peace?

Feature image: Supplied/TikTok - @keepingupwithsamandjesse. 

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