My house-help M – I’ve written many posts about her, her thoughts, her questions to the society and many more. Even though she looks subdued and quiet, her thoughts and actions are of a woman with great self-respect. She may not tell in so many words but she proves with her action that her self-respect is her greatest asset.
Now, in our apartment, we have different rates going on for different works – to clean the vessels “x” amount, to sweep and mop the house “y” amount; the cleaning of the house rate varies according to a 3 bhk or 2 bhk flat. Its like the real estate rate, it keeps increasing and we need to be aware of the increase and accordingly increase the salary. I’ve no problem in giving her the money, as she truly deserves for all the hard work she puts in.
There is this lady B, with whom M was working even before she got married and the two of them used to share a great rapport. Each one will be there for the other person always, helping each other. And when such a bond was there, M felt that she should not ask B about the going rates for work in the apartment. So she happily took what B paid her, as M valued their relationship much more.
But this B didn’t sit quietly. Instead she started referring M to her friends houses to do house work and informed her friends of the money she’s paying M, for the work she does. So when M went to talk about work and salary to the people referred by B, she was in for a shock. All the friends insisted that M work for them for the same salary like B. M was greatly annoyed at the behavior of B because of which others expected her to work for less money.
She tried explaining herself to B and tell her in clear terms that this salary is only for her, for the relationship they share. But it was of no use.
So, quietly M quit her job with B – her 10 years of relationship was cut-off in one day, when she was forced to leave her self-respect, self-worth, her value of work!
And secretly I was proud of M who stood her ground and didn’t submit to the degrading of her worth.
Finally, it’s all about the love we give to our own self, the value we have for the work we do, the importance we give to our own time – all these are more important in life !