Tuesday, September 15, 2009

WHAT IF YOU COULD CHOOSE WHERE YOU WOULD BE BORN?




I am about to be born.

You probably wonder what is news-worthy about the above statement. Every day, hundreds of thousands of women give birth around the continent, and hundreds of thousands more babies, somewhere around 262,500 to be exact, are made. So, you ask – what is newsworthy about the statement that a new baby is about to be born to some family in some part of the world?

The newsworthy part of the statement has not even been made yet, the full form of the statement reads somewhat like this – “I am about to be born to – a Nigerian woman, in a Nigerian hospital”.

For the reason that my head and feet are wrongly placed, I will be delivered via Caesarean Section. The whole thing could have been over by now, but power supply got cut off a few minutes after the decision to operate on my mother was made, via telephone (much thanks to MTN – whatever the letters stand for). My mother is so scared that I can feel her negative vibrations through the amniotic fluid that is supposed to insulate me from her world, with all their dirt and stuff. Well, funny enough – the lights come back on a few minutes after. I hear some of the people around shout ‘UP NEPA!!!’, and others scream ‘UP PHCN’, and I wish someone would please breakdown the acronyms for me. Are NEPA and PHCN equivalent bodies or things or whatever they are? Ok, someone down the stairs just said – ‘NEVER EXPECT POWER ALWAYS’, and someone else said – ‘PLEASE HOLD CANDLE NOW’. I guess these are what the letters stand for! I wonder how they could name national agencies such defeatist names. Well, I will later find that those are not their real names and that in fact - there is no such an agency as NEPA...



There is a nine in a hundred probability that my other ‘friends’ who get delivered through natural means will die at birth, but I guess the odds that I will not see the light of day are higher for me – seeing that I will be delivered via surgery. Fact is that the odds favour my death in this process.

Very early on in my life, if I have one yet, I am about to learn the power of connections in this society. Nurses are on strike, and well placed calls to nurses my father and mother have met over the years bring a few of them rushing to the hospital, in mufti. A few other calls secure the attention of foreign trained surgeons, and from different areas of the state, they hurry towards the hospital. Would someone please tell me what the word foreign means? I have not been able to place a contextual meaning yet, other than that it has something to do with these guys not being trained in this country, but I guess that wouldn’t really do for a meaning. I am soon to find that this country’s ivory towers have long since become ivory dungeons, and that even Nigerian leaders are afraid to use Nigerian hospitals. If you are like me, you are probably asking why.

As my mother is wheeled to the operating room, the lights go off, again. However, thanks to God, the hospital can afford those white things (I later find out they are called generators) and they kick into work almost immediately, a time lag of 5 seconds to be exact. The nurses and surgeons hurriedly change into white gowns, and surgery is billed to start in 15 minutes.

I sense all sorts of vibrations coming from these people, and from their environment, and so I try to get a feel of my new environment.

I learn that one of the nurses lost her husband in a car accident a few weeks back, and that the other nurses have doubts about her taking part in this surgery – because they are not sure that she is emotionally strong enough to play her part to the full. From the woman, I learn that her husband was a promising engineer, who had great plans for developing a local telecommunications company that would offer high quality service at some of the lowest tariffs possible. I find that he was of the opinion that offering high quality service at low prices would help to crash prices and make communication more affordable. I am soon to find that this country loses her best brains in road accidents every day of the year, and that her economic environment is best fitted to serve as an incinerator for great ideas.

Someone in this room is wondering how long turtles live. Amazing! I wonder why he/she doesn’t just get on the internet and bing or google it. I will later find that internet access is a preserve of the elite here, and that most Nigerians have not ever heard of Mozilla Firefox. Interesting! Hello, would you please forget about turtles for a while and concentrate on bringing me into your world alive? Yeah, and by the way, while the smaller ones live for 30 years, and the bigger ones for 60, some captive giant tortoises have lived for over 200 years. Pity you can’t hear me.

One of the nurses is just arriving; she was robbed on her way here. Everybody is sort of happy that she was not raped. I wonder what that means, will someone
please tell me? Anyway, they took her phone and a few other personal effects. I am soon to find that a sense of security here is an illusion, and that you cannot ever trust in the government to secure your life and properties. Sure, you cannot ever trust in the government, you have to put your trust in God.

Another one of the nurses is obviously joyous; I try to find the reason. I find that she is happy because the 13 month ASUU (I wonder what this means, too) strike has been suspended, and her younger brother will finally go back to school and finish his last semester. Eewo! Poor boy! To think that the Federal Government would finally capitulate and allow them have every one of their demands. Anyway, I can sense that my father plans that I attend a foreign university. It is funny how one word common to everybody’s thoughts in the past 5 minutes is the word “foreign”.

I remember the news I heard a while back that a newly born baby was infected with HIV/AIDS in this country. I don’t know what the word means, but seeing the turmoil that the incident generated - I sure hope I will not require a blood transfusion at anytime in the future, far or near!

I pick up vibrations from someone outside the room. He is a beggar, and he is sleeping under the sidewalks in this terrible cold (yeah, I can feel the cold even inside here). Wait, this guy was just like me once! His parents had great plans for him once, and he had great dreams once, so what happened? Is it that he was not strong enough to carry through his plans, or that the system brought about his downfall? I think I once heard my mother read something by one Barack Obama to the effect that if you are favoured by God, and you work hard and take responsibility – you will have a chance for a better life. Yeah, one more question – who is Barack Obama? The whole black race seems to be in love with the guy. I sure don’t envy that guy, being in the spotlight and all, or do I?

(This post is continued down here...)

2 comments:

  1. koye! u'r jst a....
    i dnt evn kno wat 2 say..nice one
    evn though i must admit d child is most unusual..lol

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  2. if babies could use their brain this thoroughly,then something dangerous is about to happen.they mostly were sent to terrorise/punish that family."gbeborun" child.really tight.hope this child has heard of militants too.there seems to be an endless list,but-NIGERIA WILL RISE AGAIN.

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