By Bankole Wright
Singer, Jodie in an exclusive and emotional interview with Linda Ikeji TV, revealed all she went through during childbirth and after discovering that her son was diagnosed with Lissencephaly and Cerebral Palsy after two weeks. This is the first time Jodie opened up about how she’s dealing with raising a child with special needs.
“When I was having my baby, I thought I was going to die at a point. I was in an emergency CS and at a point, when they put.., the I don’t know what they call it medically, to induce me, my husband at the time was in the room, and I said; ‘Is Chinua ok?’ because we named him before he was born, I just wanted to know If my baby was fine. I could barely know what was happening. Is he fine? He said, yes.
So I was like if I’m going to die now, my son is fine. I just slipped into unconsciousness. And I felt I was in an empty space. A void. I was me, myself and I for real. And I was Jodie, at this point, you are either going forward or going back oh. I started remembering some songs I wrote then that I had not released. Honestly, and they were christian songs. I said Ahh God, if I go now, those songs will just waste? Laughs.. I mean it. Thats one of the things that happened, amongst other things. The summary of it all is that I’m happy I’m alive.”
How has this experience joining into motherhood shaped you?
“I’m learning about myself. Yes oh. I am learning to love myself much more. I love my son and my boy is unique. I’m saying this not for pity but because some mothers find themselves in my shoes. my boy, after labour it affected him. He didn’t cry for 9 hours that first day, 9th of April. So he cried miraculously at the time his father and my sister were running around by 2am or whatever am running around to get a hospital to admit him because they had to refer him. He was admitted and the doctors said he’s going to be this, going to be that. We finally got home and weeks later started noticing a depression in his head. They referred us to another hospital and eventually we had to this scan, that scan, that test.
Eventually, they said he was diagnosed with Lissencephaly and Cerebral Palsy. Lissencephaly is a rare brain disorder, Cerebral Palsy is the more popular one. The doctors said there is no cure, manage it, we’re so sorry. That came with its own ripple effect. At some point, some doctors would say just leave this baby with your mother. Do you have a mother? Because you’ll run crazy. When they told me to leave my child. I wasn’t trying to be a supermom but at the same time, I didn’t know how to cope initially with all that news. They’ll tell you your child may not walk or talk, may die before he’s two-year-old, he may die so so so so and they are telling you with more certainty than not.
Then at the end of the day, they’ll say there’s nothing prayer can not do, so that it won’t be that they didn’t add that part. You’ll hear different people say, don’t take him out, don’t let people see him oh, don’t snap him pictures oh, because your child is special.”
“I snap my child. His head is not perfect, the skull shape is not what people call perfect but it’s the most perfect skull that I’ve ever seen. I take him out when I want to. His cry is the perfect one.
I’m saying this because of mothers who have special kids. Be proud of your child. Sometimes we don’ know why certain things happen. We really don’t know.
Be proud of your child, Take him out and spend money on him If you don’t have, work. pray for God to bless you. It’s much more expensive taking care of a special child than an average child. We go to the hospital every week, the gadgets. the medications, is much more expensive. If you can’t afford it, pray and work. Don’t just say they said the child is going to die, so you just leave the child. I would do my own as a human being. Being a mother to that special boy has made less afraid and has made me willing to live. More willing. It has ,made want to enjoy myself.
The birth process made know that life is short and you can go anytime. Don’t let any doctor discourage you from enjoying your child.”
“Africans generally are not outspoken when it has to do with stuff like this with people, I realized why am I hiding it? I am not ashamed of my boy. I’m not. People can learn, be encouraged. Be proud of you child. Don’t be ashamed. I got a nanny, Initially I got two nannies. because that was the most realistic thing to do. When he was younger, when he was awake, he’s crying and you cannot sit down and carry him. You must stand up in a certain way. Initially.. But now, he sits down, he’s growing. The doctors tell you that your child might be able to do some things that we initially said he can’t do, God willing. But development may be slow. Just be patient.”
On how her child’s father has been of support, Jodie said, I don’t want to talk… Watch the video below.