Wednesday, June 19, 2024

The other woman in your house

For a change, this other woman is one with a golden heart and magical hands and no matter how hard you try not show her how much you appreciate her, deep down you know she is carrying you and your household on her back.

You probably call her “My maid” which simply translates to “My female servant”, as the Collins Concise dictionary defines maid to be.

You are so right! She is your servant.
She makes your bed, bathes your kids so that you are able to walk proudly around the malls holding their hands. And she makes you and your husband breakfast.

She is still the one who carries the grocery from your car while you sit to watch your favourite soapie.
Your kids on the other hand call her “auntie” and although you introduced her as such, she is indeed to be their real aunt.

She has left her own kids to give yours love and attention. She is their mother figure while you are swamped in your career, kitchen parties and bridal showers. She is the one running behind your hyperactive son while you sit next to your husband in your wedding day’s second attire in church.

Despite the exercises she had, you still invite bazalwana (church mates) over for a sumptuous lunch. Thanks God once more for this woman’s magical hands!

She even gives you confidence to also invite your in-laws over and that is when you pretend to be the hardworking ngwetsi they appreciate. No wonder they just disappear and the next phone call to your friend would be, “Bo maid ba dingalo waitse. Ke gore ke tsile go dira jang tota ka bana ba?” (Maids are so difficult to understand. What am I going to do with these kids?)

For some of us who are aunties, you know how sometimes it is very difficult to choose between babysitting and forfeit your nights out plans with your man.

My nephew Bakang would tell what a wonderful aunt I am but not during the weekend. Unfortunately for the maid, weekends are normal working days or it is time to go back to your village and watch your kids die of hunger.

It is evident that our careers are so important that we actually substituted ourselves with maids when it comes to children. No mothers and fathers at home. Has the need to succeed financially replaced the love, attention, connection and quality time with our kids?

”It’s not the quality or quantity of time that we spend, but about the quality of quantity time,” as Dr Tim Elmore puts it in his book, titled Nurturing the leader within your child.
Do our children know that we love them or does the purchase of material things become evidence that we really love them?


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