My name is Lena Moleka. I am originally from Belgium/DRCongo. I founded “Piece of Cake, a small baking business, out of my love for baking and creating new recipes. Baking brings me a lot of joy, motivation, and energy.
I was born with Sickle cell disease a group of disorders that affects hemoglobin, the molecule in red blood cells that delivers oxygen to cells throughout the body. People with this disorder have atypical hemoglobin molecules called hemoglobin S, which can distort red blood cells into a sickle, or crescent, shape.
Signs and symptoms of sickle cell disease usually begin in early childhood. Characteristic features of this disorder include a low number of red blood cells (anemia), repeated infections, and periodic episodes of pain. The severity of symptoms varies from person to person. Some people have mild symptoms, while others are frequently hospitalized for more serious complications.
The signs and symptoms of sickle cell disease are caused by the sickling of red blood cells. When red blood cells sickle, they break down prematurely, which can lead to anemia. Anemia can cause shortness of breath, fatigue, and delayed growth and development in children. The rapid breakdown of red blood cells may also cause yellowing of the eyes and skin, which are signs of jaundice. Painful episodes can occur when sickled red blood cells, which are stiff and inflexible, get stuck in small blood vessels. These episodes deprive tissues and organs of oxygen-rich blood and can lead to organ damage, especially in the lungs, kidneys, spleen, and brain. A particularly serious complication of sickle cell disease is high blood pressure in the blood vessels that supply the lungs (pulmonary hypertension). Pulmonary hypertension occurs in about one-third of adults with sickle cell disease and can lead to heart failure. I had 3 stroke, the first two was between the age of 9 and 11 years old, but I recovered through Intensive Physiotherapies session. But at the age of 16 years old I had the final stroke, that is why my mom decided to leave our house, her two cars, her job …. behind and decide to come stay in Cape town. When we arrived here with my family, after two weeks I developed a Pneumonia we had to rush into Constancia Mediclinic they put me in “I See You” with a Noisy Oxygen machine I spend 3 weeks after that I start to feel better,we went back home. In 2012 I got my feets surgery, and I continuing my physiotherapy With this Awesome Physiotherapist Juliane Van Dick I see the progress years after years.
I know it would be easy for me to just give up on life, but I am a fighter and a dreamer. My passion is bigger than my limitations, so I have chosen to follow my heart and start my own business. I am a strong believer that you can do anything you set your mind on. For now, I work from home, but my dream is partner with local bakeries and restaurants to learn more about bakery and eventually promote my brand through them. I spend a lot of time watching the big french bakers on tv. My ultimate dream is to attend one of those courses.
Currently based in Cape Town, South Africa, “Piece of Cake” offers a variety of pastry from simple cookies and everyday birthday cakes to the finest french pastries.
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