Above: Odogwu Anene Nkemdilim runs a small grocery store and opted for an IUD to take control over her reproductive and professional life.
When they got married, Odogwu Anene Nkemdilim and her husband decided they would space their children five years apart. But after getting pregnant the second time when their first child was less than two years old, she realized they needed family planning.
She learned about DKT Nigeria’s Honey & Banana Connect Call Center from her doctor. She called and, with their guidance, selected a Lydia IUD. She now recommends the call center to her friends.
Anene and her husband still want one more child but now that they have the IUD, they are going to do it on their terms. She has big career plans and doesn’t want to be distracted by having another child too soon.
Anene, 28 years old, has a college degree in medical physiology and wants to use her training to open her own pharmacy. She had to put those plans on hold due to a lack of money and the birth of two children. Instead, her husband helped her open a small grocery store in Ago Palace, an up and coming middle class community of Lagos; he sells drinks in another shop. But Anene’s dream of having her own pharmacy never died.
“By God’s grace, I’m planning to stop selling provisions and start selling medicine in my own pharmacy,” she says confidently. She says her pharmacy offerings will include DKT products like condoms and oral and emergency contraception.
Anene lives with her family, one son and one daughter, in a two-bedroom apartment in Lakeview Estate in Ago Palace. She’s a devout Christian, who prays with her children every day and loves Christian music. Every weekday morning, she wakes her children at 5:00, bathes them, prepares the food for the older one and cleans the house. She drops the baby at a day care center, the older one at school and is working in her shop by 9:00.
Starting contraception a year ago has been a huge boost to Anene’s life. “Family planning has changed my life very well,” she says. “Before, if I’m with my husband, I would be fearing for myself whether I might get pregnant. But after the Lydia IUD, I have a free mind.”
Her doctor told her that when she is ready to have another child, all she has to do is come in and have the IUD removed. She encourages other women to try family planning. “Nigeria is not a place where you want to be giving birth all the time because things are hard now.”
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