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With the unwavering support from your grandmother, your aunt Zenani and your mother that you have expressed throughout the book, what caused you the emptiness and depression that fuelled much of your painful experiences? Apart from the abuse from loved ones, it would be my relationship with my parents and being born into the political family I belong to especially in that particular era. I do believe though, that all these life changing experiences have made me a better person today. The loss of your daughter Zenani and all that was related to it, was a traumatic and an excruciatingly tragic experience that you are still dealing with, what helps you get by? The road safety campaign work I do in her memory and that of all our children who have lost their lives on the road. As well as, being a better parent today than I was to her. I know the work I do and the changes I have made to become a parent would make her proud and that helps me get by. Contrary to Zenani’s unexpected death, you had a chance to say goodbye to Zenawe, has this meant anything for the healing process? I suppose in more ways than one. I was even robbed of that opportunity due to the injuries she sustained to her face and my family refused to let me see her that way, I think they were only trying to protect me and my last image of her. Your journey with breast cancer was another overwhelming part of the book, what is the biggest lesson you have learned from battling and surviving cancer?

“ I have never felt more liberated in all my life than owning my bald head. I’m a survivor of this life threatening disease and I conquered it, I did that with unashamed pride.”

Breast cancer has honestly changed my life for the better. I have learned that early detection really saved my life and that through my own experiences, I can help change and save someone else’ life. While many women who have survived breast cancer worry about hair, your obsession, following your mastectomy was with breasts, why was this? I think it is because the result of my last breast surgery would then be indication that I had won; that and being declared cancer free. The obsession developed in shopping for sizes, I guess and it was exciting just thinking of the final result of my new man made breasts – my trophy. I still have my breast tissue expanders and yet to undergo two surgeries to replace the expanders with implants and to have my nipple reconstruction done.

What is the significance of the unashamed showing of your bald head during and after chemotherapy? I have never felt more liberated in all my life than owning my bald head. I’m a survivor of this life threatening disease and I conquered it, I did that with unashamed pride.

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Profile for Afroelle Magazine

December Issue 2014  

Our December Issue is packed with the Best of 2014 featuring interviews with Zoleka Mandela, Hollywood actress Lisa Raye, Zimbabwean writer...

December Issue 2014  

Our December Issue is packed with the Best of 2014 featuring interviews with Zoleka Mandela, Hollywood actress Lisa Raye, Zimbabwean writer...