Wednesday, 5 August 2015
Dear Funke, Thank You!
I never thought I would ever say these words, but as they say, Never say never. You see, Funke was my house help whom I got to help out with the house chores. I had heard so many stories about how helps maltreat, molest or even kill children, and had made up my mind not to take any, no matter what happened. However, things changed when i gave birth and the work and pressure was becoming unbearable so much that I had a high blood pressure. Hubby and I decided to take someone who would come in and clean and go back. It sounded like the perfect plan ; she would help clean while I tend to and bond with my son.
I remember early in the morning when my aunt called me that she had found a maid, you need to see the excitement with which I drove down to her place to pick my new help; my escape from the clasp of house chores. I instantly liked her the minute i saw her, she was young and neat. Whats more, my son liked her; he smiled and let her carry him. This is it! She's the one! Bliss! During the drive home, we got talking and I discovered she lived not far from me and it was a trekkable distance . I used to take longs walks during pregnancy and I had probably passed her house a few times before ; she lived that close. In my mind, that meant I could call her up when I needed her and she would show up quick enough.
The first week went quite well, she was well behaved, did her work well and was generally alright. I made a few corrections here and there but nothing major, she seemed eager to learn and I was pleased. She mentioned she wanted to write JAMB, and I had no objection as she had a beautiful SSCE result and I automatically thought she had to be really bright to have that result. We planned to have lessons during our free times when my son would be asleep.
Things started getting interesting when I sent her to the corner shop up my street, it was not far, just like 5minutes or less walk from the house. I sent her about 5 items and was not expecting anything to go wrong. So when i saw her missed call, I quickly called her back, thinking something wasn't available in the shop or the money she had on her was not enough. I was slightly pissed when she stuttered and asked me what the items were that i sent her... I could not believe it, but i kept my cool and said them again. You would expect that she would bring all items back right? Well, you thought wrong, she left out one item. I kept my cool, and made a mental note of asking her to jot down anything i ask her to buy next time. A few days after that, i asked her to bring a pen and paper because she was going to the corner shop, I dictated what I wanted and she jotted it down and went on her way. A while later, she came back and still didnt bring back all she jotted. On looking at her notes, I could not read most of what she wrote, and apparently she couldnt either! See gobe! She couldn't spell and had a bad memory; I have entered on chance! How did she make all her papers?! She didn't fail a single subject in the result she showed me. *Feel free to insert the BBM confused emoticon here*
I was very upset with her and I made sure she knew, I sat her down and asked her how she thought I could help. I started making conscious efforts to make her read things out loud to me, and all sorts of exercises. It was around this time I noticed she would rather watch Africa Magic Yoruba than read or study. I didnt want to be too hard on her, but I pitied her because I know she has heard men tell her she's beautiful. What she didnt know is that beauty will only carry you so far, and it fades too.
In a bid to make her become a better person, even with her spoken English, I think she felt inferior, or that I was being too mean, she began to withdraw. At this time, I was also tired of babying her; I would rather do things myself than send her, because she would either not do it properly or forget half of what she was to do. After a few months of her being with me, she said she wanted out, and I didn't beg her or ask her why. I just said OK.
She left, and I went back to being wife, mother, maid, cleaner, friend, playmate and in the process I started loosing weight. Whaaaat?!!! I was happy! I would strap my baby to my back and walk to the corner shop, stand for minutes in the kitchen to cook, do a bit of cleaning and other chores all the while still strapping him on. I made significant progress, so much that a month after she left, I was fitting into my prepregnancy clothes. Best feeling EVER!!!
Help came once more with Rent-A-Back :They are a cleaning service that do homes and offices and generally anything and anywhere you need them to clean. I've been using them for close to 6months now and there hasn't been any complaints.
So, Funke dear, if you ever get to read this, i just want to tell you how grateful I am, you helped me accomplish what I hitherto though was impossible ; get my body back. And also you taught me patience, cos dear, you sometimes pushed me to the wall, but I didn't say or show it because I was afraid of losing you and also didnt want you to feel maltreated. You showed me a new side of me I didn't know I possessed. Thank you.
Have you had a help or house maid before? What was the experience like? Pls do share