Joan Lawrence says “every single day is a nightmare” since her daughter disappeared in 2009.
The mother of missing Claudia Lawrence has said she is in “utter shock” and “very, very churned up” about a new police search for her daughter.
A popular fishing spot, near York, is being searched by police investigating the suspected murder of Ms Lawrence.
The 35-year-old’s disappearance has remained a mystery since she failed to turn up for work at the University of York in March 2009.
Joan Lawrence said “every single day is a nightmare” since Claudia disappeared.
“It’s so much to take in in a short time and nothing seems to happen for a long, long time then everything came together and I haven’t had time to really digest it,” she said in an interview with BBC Radio York.
North Yorkshire Police said its latest search at Sand Hutton gravel pits, about eight miles (13km) outside York, was expected to take a number of days.
The force said it could not disclose what had led officers to the location.
Mrs Lawrence said she could “not think of any connection that Claudia would have” with the site.
University chef Ms Lawrence was last seen at 15.05 on Wednesday 18 March walking towards her home on Heworth Road.
Later that evening she spoke to both her parents, Joan and Peter Lawrence, by phone, but the following day failed to arrive for her job at Goodricke College.
A friend who became concerned when she failed to meet at a local pub that evening contacted Ms Lawrence’s father, who reported her missing on 20 March.
Peter Lawrence, died earlier this year without knowing what happened to his daughter.
Mrs Lawrence said the search for her daughter was “very personal” as it was “about me and a daughter I haven’t seen for 12 years, every single day is a nightmare”.
Her staunch faith would give her “the courage and strength to get through”, Mrs Lawrence said.
“It will support me no matter what has gone on, it’s there, it is always there,” she said.
“If you give up hope you might as well give up altogether.”