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To make a difference in the world, even a small positive step can be enough - there is no need for grand actions. A personal story of one woman educating her domestic help.
To make a difference in the world, even a small positive step can be enough – there is no need for grand actions. A personal story of one woman educating her domestic help.
“To make a difference in someone’s life, you don’t have to be brilliant or perfect. All you have to do is just care for them. Educate every child that YOU can, especially a girl.” – author unknown
No matter how educated, talented, cool or rich you believe you are, how you treat people around you tells it ALL. Today I want to share an incidence from my own life where I took a small step forward for a positive change.
Exactly 9 years back, I was a fulltime working mom. I live in a nuclear setup in the big city Mumbai where a corporate job never ends up being a 9-5 gig. Though I am fortunate to have married a very supportive husband, a reliable and steady maid holds the key to bringing in that much needed work-life balance once the baby arrives.
The initial few months were bumpy, with maids walking in and out every 4-5 months. Some wanted to quit for better prospects, others got fired due to unsatisfactory ethics. If it was not for my own mom, who stood by me, I would have quit just around then.
After many rounds of short-term hires, around the time my kid was 2 years old, Asha walked in. When she came, her name didn’t make any special impact on me. It was like any previous bai – Geeta, Sarita or Lata. Frail, docile, quiet, she kept to herself and her work.
It’s only over the years that she spent in our house, that I understood what her name really meant. With a desire to work, she gave her 100% to my child and my house. True to her name she took charge, not only in doing her duty, but by building that delicate bond with my child. I could trust her, so I could continue with my job.
2.5 years later, it was time for her to leave. By now, I wasn’t working. So I didn’t need her as desperately. She wanted to pursue a degree in nursing. She wanted to go for a 3 year residential programme at a reputed private nursing college in Vishakhapatnam. I think I didn’t mention that she had completed her graduation from her village near Ranchi before she came to work in Mumbai.
How far did I care for her when it was time for her to exit? NO, she did not ask me for money. But I knew that the small savings she had, would give her family a relatively more comfortable life back there in the village, so I decided to fund her studies. I wanted her to have a better shot at life. The life of a trained ‘Sister’ at the hospital.
She is in her 6th semester now, getting ready for campus placement. The expenses were close to my own corporate job’s 4 month’s salary at a time when I was NOT working. But then there is no greater joy than the JOY of giving. No one has ever become poor from giving.
To make a difference in someone’s life, you don’t have to be brilliant or perfect. All you have to do is just care for them. Educate every child that YOU can, especially a girl.
Drop a line in the comment box about an incident in your own life, where you (or anyone you came across) took a small step forward for a positive change.
A version fo this was previously published here.
Image source: a still from the movie Kayala
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Die hard romantic, self confessed perfectionist, a really really bad cook and hopefully a writer in the making, that describes me !! Mother of two absolutely adorable kids, wife to a caring husband and daughter to read more...
Women's Web is an open platform that publishes a diversity of views, individual posts do not necessarily represent the platform's views and opinions at all times.
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Homeschooling in India is having a moment. As families become increasingly weary of traditional schooling thanks to cookie-cutter policies and high costs, parents are opting for alternate methods of education
Homeschooling in India is having a moment. As families become increasingly weary of traditional schooling thanks to cookie-cutter policies and high costs, parents are opting for alternate methods of education.
Come Monday morning, homes with young families across the country are in a chaotic yet familiar dance. Ceiling fans are turned off, and lights turned on with a vengeance.
Teeth are cleaned, and breakfasts are shovelled down. Uniforms and shoes are thrown on, and heavy school bags are picked up as parents and kids alike make a mad dash for the door.
Your goals made you move to a new city. I saved my pocket money to call you from a local PCO since my house used to get itemized phone bills.
When I write this, I feel as if I am 19 years old again.
Could we rewind further to our childhood days as tiny tots and neighbors? Due to your dad’s job transfer, you had to move out of town. Our paths crossed again unexpectedly after a decade or more. Amidst the crowd, our eyes met unexpectedly at a family function. I recognized you, but I wasn’t sure if you remembered me. For the entire event, I kept looking for you and felt butterflies in my stomach whenever our eyes met.