Friday, 27 January 2017

The age old saga of domestic help

Who do you think the working wives wait desperately for everyday? Its none other than our maid. The simple thought of a maid not coming on her regular time can give a mini heart attack to wives like me. And the moment I see her I feel so relaxed yes today my domestic chores will be taken care of. But is it a cake-walk? No, it is hell lot of task to hire her, retain her and make her do her work. I had so many experiences about maid, some good many bad but still I don't change her and my eyes keep looking for her daily.

Why is it so difficult to work without a maid? We have so much of dependency on maids that we simply don't device other methods to take care of our domestic tasks. And most of this domestic workers work because of their own financial problems, they don't work because they are passionate about house hold work. Same is with baby sitters, these women have the worst kind of backgrounds, husband not earning, husband is drunkard and they have so may kids to support, hence they work.

I have had a babysitter who after interviewing so many times we found that she was least interested in looking after my child. She had some affairs and the dreadful part was she used to take my son with her in her working hours while doing all these things. I had a cook who didn't know how to put tadka for daal/sabji. What am I suppose to do while hiring her ask her to cook one meal and then tell her if she is selected? And washing clothes/utensils/floor these maids do all these task in a blink of an eye. In spite of all this I always hire a maid, because it is just not possible for me to do all the chores daily.

I once had a maid who always asked for salary advance. She will start with her financial problems and slowly reach her point. I would feel bad for her and give her as much money I can afford to give. The moment I gave her advance money, she will go on a week vacation. In this way, she already had taken about 6 months advance and even after giving advance money half of the month, we had to do domestic chores ourselves.

These days there is so much demand and so less supply that every one keeps trying to woo this maids and goes to any extent to retain them. My current maid is no better. Once I politely told her to come on time, clean properly etc. There was no change so the next day I repeated the same with some anger, the third day she came to me and said please find another one, I can't work with you. So those who say that we don't treat our maids better that's not the case. Since our lives are run by these women, we have to give up sometimes and let them win. Because we need them more than they need us.

Tips while hiring a maid:

1) Do a complete background check before hiring a maid
2) Not all maids are perfect, so don't keep changing maids frequently
3) Do not keep any valuables/money in home, and if you do have to keep in home keep in safe lock
4) These days maids are not used to hear constant nagging, so even if she commits any mistake try to      talk politely
5) Once you tell her all tasks, let her do by herself, don't keep micro monitoring her work
6) Ask her to plan leave in advance, and occasionally let her take a day off (she needs a break too)

All I wish is that may you get a honest, truthful and hardworking maid.

Saturday, 7 January 2017

Tips while Travelling to office when you are expecting

In Indian Metro cities office commute can be so time consuming that you can't imagine. If you are an expecting mother you have to do this herculean task of travelling to office everyday till you maternity leave gets approved. Although a visible bump may get you some good experiences but that is not always. Some days you have to deal with weird people who show no sympathy for any person. Last Friday there was an expecting mother in our office bus and one guy from HR was sitting on the seat reserved for expecting mothers. I assume he was unaware that someone might need that seat and the lady too shy to ask him to exchange seats sat on seats which where far behind the bus door. When her stop came she started walking towards the bus door and bang, the bus driver had to apply harsh brakes(you know how Pune traffic is) and she fell on her bump. People helped her, the bus driver also helped her to get to her house but what was done could not be undone. She was in pain. Now before blaming any one in this scenario I could not control my anger for the woman. Why couldn't she ask the person sitting on seat reserved for her to vacate and let her sit?

This I am talking about office bus, the public transport is way more pathetic. I used to travel to office till my 8th month of pregnancy. While most of the times my husband dropped me, there were times when I had to take public transport. Some days people would willingly offer a seat while on others few stubborn people showed no sympathy. That time I would ask the driver and bus conductor to intervene, but I never surrendered. Ladies, it is you birth right to ask for the seats which are reserved for pregnant ladies. I can never imagine how the pregnant ladies commute to office in Mumbai locals. What I feel is if you cannot stand up for yourself, how are you going to protect the life that is growing within you? Here are the few tips which will help you while commuting to office.

  1. Travel as long as you feel comfortable: Nothing is more important than your or your child's health, so travel as long as you are comfortable. The day you feel you are not fit for travelling take unpaid leave till your pregnancy and take rest.
  2. Speed dial List: Always keep your husband's number on speed dial so that you can contact him in emergency. Also, it is advisable to keep your parents, in-laws and doctors number handy. Write it on a piece of paper and keep it handy so that if you need any help others can help you to connect with your well wishers in short time
  3. Reserved Seats: There are seats reserved for pregnant women, do not hesitate to ask anyone to vacate the seat meant for you.
  4. Carry sickness bag: In case you feel nauseous, keep an sickness bag handy so even if you feel like vomiting, you do not affect your co passengers.

Always remember, you can get a different job if you take a break, but the damage done if you risk your life while travelling cannot be changed. Be cautious and careful while travelling when you are expecting.

Happy Parenting!!!