We had the good fortune of connecting with Anita Wikina and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Anita, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
Hi there! My name is Berry Dakara, a Nigerian woman who lives in Atlanta, USA and I have the most energetic threenager daughter. I also happen to be the founder and host of the Mommy Oyoyo podcast. In 2016 I publicly shared (on Youtube and my lifestyle blog) that I had been trying to conceive for almost a year and a half without success – unexplained infertility. While waiting and trying, it occurred to me that there were so many other women like me who were also struggling but felt like they were alone and couldn’t speak up about their struggles – they were suffering in silence. I decided to talk openly about my TTC experience openly – and in a way, that was the beginning of the Mommy Oyoyo podcast. African women are indirectly taught by society to be quiet and not allowed to speak openly about certain topics. As they say, “we don’t air our dirty linen in public.” We are meant to be ashamed if and when we have issues surrounding marriage and motherhood. I chose to speak out and provide a platform for other African women to hear real and unfiltered conversations about motherhood. Additionally, there were so many podcasts on motherhood but I couldn’t find one that I related to as an African. The Mommy Oyoyo podcast officially started in June 2019 and is a safe space for the Modern African woman to talk about ANYTHING and EVERYTHING relating to Motherhood. We have covered topics that range from Divorce to Homeschooling, Mom Guilt to Being a Single Mother, Trying to Conceive due to Endometriosis and PCOS, Giving Birth like the Hebrew Woman, Raising Biracial Children and so much more!
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I had listened to podcasts on and off for almost 8 years and never had an idea that I could become a podcaster myself. I had a blog as my creative outlet and a currently-on-hold YouTube channel to share about my life. The idea that I could start podcasting didn’t cross my mind until 2018 and then it took a good year to actually get started. In late 2018 while still dreaming about the idea I decided to see if I could come up with topics to discuss on the podcast. I wrote down 40 topics and that was the first time I thought, “Wow, I might be onto something here.” By June 2019 though, I still hadn’t started the podcast. I had spent the previous months trying to find the perfect time, gear, launch plan, etc. And one day it hit me like a ton of bricks that I’d been talking about starting a podcast for 8 months with absolutely nothing to show for it. I grabbed my phone, opened the app I use for podcasting, hit record, published and announced on social media that I had started a podcast! My number 1 lesson through that process is this: JUST START! We can make all the plans in the world and not implement anything out of fear or doubt – those things will remain in your head or on paper until you just start. Podcasting has been fun but not without its challenges. I’ve had to record one episode 3 different times because the audio files had technical issues. I’ve had a guest who changed her mind about being featured after weeks of chatting with her and finally recording – that was painful. I’ve gotten overwhelmed with podcasting weekly while having a full-time job and being a single mom. Marketing and promotion are a hassle in my very humble opinion – why can’t millions of people just magically find out about and love my podcast from thin air?! LOL But I love the Mommy Oyoyo podcast! I love bringing stories of motherhood to my people from our unique experiences. It’s such an easygoing podcast that even when I have had conversations on heavy topics like Autism, Infant Loss, Divorce, Vasectomies, the outlook is still positive and hopeful.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Gosh, Atlantic Station used to be my favorite place to take visiting friends and family. Shopping, Dining, Activities all in one! I haven’t been in a little while though – thanks rona. I live on the border of Acworth and Kennesaw and I have to say pre-rona, there were so many activities to choose from: festivals, museums, the beach (Yes, Acworth beach is a real beach people!), cute restaurants, and don’t get me started on the parks. I love taking my daughter to the playground at Logan Farm Park in Acworth and can’t wait for warmer weather to go back jogging on the many trails. For the summer months, the monthly concert series in Marietta Square are a MUST! The music, the crowd, the atmosphere are always so much fun! Marietta Square on it’s own is such a gem – very nice for photos, amazing restaurants and cute shops for everyone!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
All thanks first of all, be to God, the Master Creator! I need to thank Ozoz aka The Kitchen Butterfly who sparked the possibility of podcasting when she shared a podcasting competition/opportunity to me way before I had the nerve to even think about it. My next shout out goes to Bolanle Williams-Olley. When I first started thinking about starting a podcast and shared the potential name on Instagram Stories, she immediately reached out and encouraged me to secure the domain name, email address and social media handles. This was almost 8 months before I actually started the podcast. Which brings me to shout out Monisha Isom who I met at work. She’s my unofficial mentor and I mentioned I’d been sitting on my podcast idea for months. She gave me timeline to work with and that push made me start recording and hit publish! Other shouts out go to Kunbi and Sheila who had podcasts of their own and gave me advice on getting started. Finally to all my family (especially my daughter Coco), friends, podcast guests and listeners. All the support in the past year and a half have been phenomenal! Thanks for sticking with me and encouraging me.
Instagram: @MommyOyoyo and @BerryDakara
Twitter: @MommyOyoyo and @BerryDakara