I was thirteen when I got my first bra and I was already a C cup. Unlike most other people I knew, who started of with training bras before moving up the alphabet scale, I never saw my breasts grow. I woke up one day and they just appeared and since then, they have never stopped growing. I recall memories of being teased in secondary school that when I have children all I would have to do is fling my breasts to my back and breast feed from behind. There were also fond memories of my brothers reciting the anthem “Bobbie won tear shirt” anytime I wore a shirt with buttons.
In some strange way, my breasts have formed a huge part of my identity to both myself and other people. As perverted as it sounds, everyone looks forward to those cushiony hugs and however much I complain about the aching back its induced, or the fact that it doesn’t permit me to wear all the clothes I would like, I have never envisioned a me without these moulds of H cups that adorn my chests and make me obsolete every now and then. As I was once told “There will be no Wana without the boobs”
In the past I have been opportuned to speak with women who have had their breast taken out and one question I tend to ask is this; “What goes through your head when they tell you that your breasts have to go?” The response often sounds as though at the time of diagnosis, they are placed under an autopilot hex, so some of their replies go along the lines of “If the breast is going to kill me, just take it out”. The thought in itself is harrowing and I can barely imagine a fraction of what a breast cancer victim goes through. From what I am told, treatment is a sickness on its own not to talk of loosing a large chunk of who you are.
This October, I will be raising funds for women diagnosed with breast cancer who cannot afford their treatment. I will be collaborating with a charity called Sebeccly Cancer Care and Support Centre. Through a campaign titled 1k4Cancer, The hope is that as many people that can support the cause by donating one thousand naira, the better chance some of these women have at surviving.
To collect the funds, I am doing an office and church tour, where I go to offices doing the day for collections and churches on Sundays to seek donations as well. We are also encouraging direct donations to the Sebeccly account. I will take photos at the offices and the photos will form part of my weekly diary that will be published here on BellaNaija.com. Besides detailing the emotional and psychological ups and downs attached to convincing Nigerians that I am not running a scam (I almost gave up during planning stage), the photographs would add some form of accountability and transparency. I will also give daily updates on twitter on funds being raised.
I currently have a list of 7 women whose treatment comes to a cost of 8 million Naira and one lady’s treatment alone runs up to 5million amongst the lot. I remember her speaking at a cancer workshop telling the audience that she was better off dead because she could barely afford two meals a day.
According to Andy Warhole, everyone will be famous for 15minutes but I feel opportune to have been allotted a few extra minutes. I don’t know how successful this will be but I reckon I might as well put the little popularity I have to good use, whilst I still have it.
Someone asked me when I harassed him for a donation, “Why breast cancer?” My reply, having a pair I believe is a good enough reason.
If you would like to support the “1k4Cancer” campaign, you can donate directly to
Sebeccly Cancer Care And Support Centre
Guarantee Trust Bank 0010849209
If you would like me to come to your office or church or perhaps you would like to help gather funds from your family and friends, (I call those office and house prefects) you can call me on
Email [email protected]
For daily updated on funds raised, follow MissWanaWana on twitter
One persons one thousand Naira can turn a victim into a survivor.