The Coming and Going of Life
I met Anita in 2008, a 36-year-old unmarried mother who provided economic and moral support for her two daughters (the youngest daughter has a brain tumor), granddaughter and aging mother.
During my research, I was not aware that Anita was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1998.
Anita never complained about her illness. Instead, Anita relentlessly continued to weave baskets, an activity she loved doing since childhood. Only now, Anita must weave baskets so she would have money to pay for chemo treatments, doctor visits and to provide
for her family.
Over time, sitting to make baskets became difficult for Anita, yet it was her only means of income. In my time of quite
reflection, I often thought of Anita and the challenges she endured. My last interview with Anita is when I noticed her manner was different. Anita had a quite resolve that only she and God knew and understood.
When I asked Anita about weaving baskets, in her tranquil state she said, "I keep going until God says it's time to leave". God said it was time to leave when Anita made her final basket and final transition in 2012. In her vacant
space, Anita left behind baskets filled with rich and endearing stories weaved together by her unwavering faith in God, love for Jamaica and devotion to family.
As I hold in hand the first and only basket Anita weaved for me, I feel tremendous gratitude that Anita entrusted me with her story. This is a story that I hope to share with those interested in learning more about the value of story. An undeniable value that continues to nurture and sustain indigenous cultures, and generations of women inside and outside Jamaica.
My life is richer because Anita lived!
Dr. Binta Masani
In the United States, October is officially Breast Cancer Awarebness Month! At Masani Consulting, LLC, we believe breast cancer awareness should be promoted everyday! Please join Masani Consulting, LLC in supporting breast cancer prevention, research and a cure! Click on the links below to find out how you can help "Fight Breast Cancer".
American Cancer Society
Jamaican Cancer Society
World Health Organization