Zoleka Mandela’s brave fight against breast cancer

By Drum Digital
13 August 2014

Friends and family members have reacted with kindness and love to the grand-daughter of the late Nelson Mandela, Zoleka Mandela, who is recovering from breast cancer.

Friends and family members have reacted with kindness and love to the grand-daughter of the late Nelson Mandela, Zoleka Mandela, who is recovering from breast cancer.

It’s now more than eight days since Zoleka had a breast reconstruction, where her breast tissue was replaced with implants. “On Monday I had the stitches and drainage tubes removed from my breast area. I thank my grandmother for holding my hand throughout this painful procedure,” Zoleka said via her Facebook page.

She will return to Milpark Hospital in Johannesburg after three months to undergo her third stage of surgery – where doctors will reconstruct her nipples.

She said a doctor will remove skin from her stomach to make new nipples. “For now, I have to wait for the implants to settle and for the swelling to go down before I can go bra shopping. No exercise for a month, no showering or bathing for 10-14 days to keep the wound area dry. But I can walk to introduce more oxygen to the breast area,” she said.

Her Facebook post on Wednesday resulted in friends and relatives sending Zoleka words of encouragement.

Tumi FaceUs Morule said: “Hey Zo, hang in there. You were born to be a fighter. Sending you lots of God’s blessings. Wishing you the best with the procedure and keeping you in our hearts and thoughts during this challenging time. Warmest regards and wishing you a speedy recovery!”

While Mpho Mauda’s message was simple yet encouraging: “Wish you a speedy recovery. You are in my prayers. Lots of love Mpho.”

Zoleka is the author of When Hope Whispers, the book that narrates her journey through her bitter fight against drug addiction and alcohol abuse, and the tragic loss of two of her children –Zenani Mandela (11 June 2010) and Zenawe Mandela (23 June 2011).

“I thank my son (Zwelami) for the pictures he took and my life partner, Thierry, for filming the procedure towards my upcoming documentary film on my journey with breast cancer,” said Zoleka.

And her message to other breast cancer survivors is simply: “Early detection saved my life. Breast cancer changed my life for the better. Onwards and upwards, the journey continues ...”

?#?BreastCancerSurvivor, ?#?CancerCanBeBeaten.

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