I cannot anymore count the number of times that I shared woes upon woes of being a domestic goddess trying to ever so faithfully juggle working from home, homeschooling an energized bunny toddler and doing house chores. To say it can be crazy is a major understatement. It is so easy to get out of sorts. And I’m sure I don’t have to tell you how it is when the queen of the house is in that state, it can be a lot worse than when a king comes home defeated from an exhausting battle.
Cutting to the chase, after nine years of marriage, my husband and I decided that we can now afford to have a helper. I have always had this issue about helpers that they have the tendency to be major stressors. But after prayerfully considering that we cannot anymore settle to a once a week general cleaning aide, we hired a girl who burned us to the tune of P5,000 via our telephone bill. She was but with us for 5 days! The PLDT bill reflected several calls to mobile phones – the longest being 75 minutes. I was then convinced then that a househelp is really not for us. I consider it a blessing in disguise that her former employer found out that she stole things from her house. Thus, sparing me more days where she can make more calls. Can you imagine how my bill will look like if she stayed a day more than she did!
Just to give you a brief backgrounder, it was in 2007 when we first hired a nanny for our little guy. I was in the call center then. So there really was not much of a choice for us then. I only lasted in the company for a couple of months. I miscarried because of the graveyard shift. I had to help the husband supplement our family income and the options were painfully few. It was then that I witnessed how this nanny hit my one year old son with a balloon stick on the side of the arm (left a mark too) when all Jed was doing was ask her to play hide and seek with him. I was on the phone then, with a divider in between me and them, making it her blind side. So she didn’t know I was there all the while. That scenario and the miscarriage were the factors why my husband and I were convinced that it is the home where the Lord wants me to be.
Hiring a house help or a nanny in this side of the world can really be very risky. Even if you hire a help from an agency, there really is no option for a bond or insurance that I know of which will give you some sense of confidence. For someone who practically grew up with nannies and house helps, some of which we learned to be afraid of (literally) because of maltreatment, it will never be easy for me to risk my son to be with anyone but those who truly love him.
It is a fact that even as parents love their children ever so dearly, there are just times that they get to your nerves. How on earth should I expect someone to respond to my son during not so good times when the person is not even related to him, right? This is one of the reasons I had a heart to heart talk with my current helper during our employment interview. Even as we prayed for a reliable and honest helper, we trusted that God will lead us to the right person. One month along, so far so good. It is also a major factor that our five year old son is already self reliant. He barely needs nannying. So the helper’s job is basically just my assistant around the house. I know you are all with me when I say that it is so important to have a reliable househelp. Welcoming another being into your home, making your personal spaces open to her which used to be otherwise invulnerable is definitely a risk that we will have to take if we choose to hire a help.
Yes, a CCTV can be of help, a hidden one, if I may add. We also take her to church with us and share to her about God’s love. We make sure she knows that we value her. I believe that is important for her to know that she is part of our team. I thoroughly appreciate her contribution on making things a lot easier here at home. All these said, there really is no guarantee that she’d be through and through good. There is nothing more than trusting God’s hand even in what could be considered a rather trivial part of our everyday lives. 🙂