I can never forget my experience birthing my first baby. Oh Lord, it was an experience indeed!
Prior to my delivery, during the period of pregnancy, my husband and I scouted for the best hospitals to birth our bundle of joy. Apart from the fact that we wanted to make our first experience memorable, we also wanted a safe space where our bundle of joy, and we ourselves, would be treated with love, respect and care.
We had heard gruelling stories of things that happened in the delivery room. How women, and babies, lost their lives due to carelessness and negligence. How midwives had treated primies, in deed and words, with utmost disdain and cruelty. So, to avoid becoming the next big news in the headline and grapevine, we did our due diligence before finally settling for the hospital of our choice.
Well meaning friends and family members suggested hospitals, of their choice, to us but in the end, it was our decision to make. It was OUR baby that was going to be birthed after all, so the onus was on us to choose – and choose wisely.
Finally, the day of delivery came. What better day than the 1st of January – New Year’s Day – to welcome our first bundle of joy. However, the experience was far beyond the jollification associated with New Year’s day. It was a jollification on another level!
And the midwife? She was way different from those “why you dey shout for me? I follow you when una dey do am” nurses. I will never forget how I kept screaming intermittently “Come and rub my back! Come and rub my back!” (the drama no be here.)
The amazing thing was that this midwife never complained. The way she beamed with smiles every time I called had a way of easing the pains; maybe, not physically, but psychologically.
Her hands had healing power. It was soothing! She rubbed my back in a way that, for a moment, I think I slept off! She was that amazing!
And, on top of that, she stayed beyond her shift all because of me. Her shift was over, but she chose to stay with me until I birthed my baby. I didn’t ask her to stay, but she knew that her presence alone was therapeutic for me. At the end, she took the delivery of my baby.
And guess what? Because of the awesome experience, I didn’t have any fears going back to the same hospital to birth my second baby.
I’ve realized that my job as an editor is similar to that of a midwife; I’m a key factor to helping authors birth their dreams. So, I put in my best to make the experience memorable and worthwhile. I’ve also learnt that by my deed and actions, I can either kill their dreams or give life to it, so I apply myself accordingly.
Recently, when a client reached out to me to edit the manuscript of her children’s book, which is actually her first ‘baby’, I knew exactly what she expected. It was a marvellous experience for me, and I was excited to work with her on the project. What thrilled me the most was that, just like when I was about to have my first baby, she also did her due diligence before making a decision.
In her own words: “At first, I was sceptical, especially as it was a contact from online. Then Nigerian, ha! The fear of my original ideas being taken and used. That was my concern. My husband said life is a risk, either you keep it under your pillow or in your closest and wonder what could have been or you take the risk and give it to an editor. I was sent four options of editors, three females and one man..their Instagram handles and Facebook pages. I just asked God for guidance, he is my trust and then I randomly selected one person. Apart from the fear of the work taken, the fear of the person not being skilled enough and then releasing a book with so many mistakes (especially grammar and proper punctuation)..Well God led me to you and I said to myself “what do I have to loose?” I just went ahead and said life lived too carefully is most usually later designed with “what ifs” so here I am with a fabulous editor, Ziziwrites, and with no regrets. I am mighty glad I chose you. My first interaction with you showed you know what you do. I will recommend you to my friends and family, any day any time. Your attitude to your work is non-Nigerian. You have a listening ear, your advises are spot on. Not full of excuses and timely delivery is apt.”
Immediately I finished editing the manuscript of her first book, she didn’t hesitate to send me the second one.
What more can I say?
Thank you for trusting me. It is a pleasure working with you. Let’s keep birthing these ‘babies’ together!