She wears the Yale blue uniform everyday to work! I run into her at least once a day; she greets me with a good morning or a good afternoon, with her cheerful face reminding me the time of the day when I am so oblivious to it! After all, I only care only about the 9 hour shift!
I usually keep people at an arm’s length distance, for the fear of being used, for the fear of being taken for granted! Why would anyone be Honest? Honesty has never helped me, how could it benefit anyone else? That leaves room only for deceit…
But there’s a look of utter sincerity in her and every time I look at her I feel guilty; guilty that I live a life of comfort whereas she- she clears trash, scrubs the floors, cleans the toilets! All this without a look of discomfort! I am aware of the hardships that she may have faced, but I would be naive to assume!
She’s sitting on the floor, concentrating on the check sheet in her hand, ticking off the boxes in the cleanup schedule; there’s a chair right next to her, yet she chooses to sit on the floor! I wonder if that’s because of insecurity, or due to a lack of choice!
She looks more real even in her sloppy uniform; no sophistication can outdo the aura of simplicity she emitted!
I ask about her life and she’s happy to share her sorrows. I guess when you have been through a lot, you stop being picky about who you talk to!
She toils hard to raise her two children, and struggles to save every penny! It is a life built around her children where she is both their mother and father!
Her husband was the biggest lesson of her life!
After the constant physical and mental abuse that he showered upon her, and her teenage children, she realized that she didn’t need those tough lessons everyday! She didn’t need the reminder that her life was slipping through her fingers, although she didn’t mind that very much!
I wondered again if that was an insecure thought or a misconception!?!
But, the fact that her children will never be able to live their life, the way they deserved to, under such an overbearing parent fired her up. Her children deserved a better life, a decent education, a life of their own. Hell!! she deserved a better life!
So, one evening, when her drunken husband returns home, demanding money, and thrashing anything or anyone found in sight. The three have had enough, they take their last stand and throw him out the door, and move to a new place; never looking back for five years now!!
She had nothing to start with, no friends or relatives who would help her. Everyone accused her of leaving her husband. So, she did odd jobs everyday to pull together what was left of her life. It didn’t pay enough, but they got by. Her son joined her on the daily crusades of work; he was in the 10th standard.
He toiled hard in the day, and studied at night!
Finally she got a chance to work in a big company, doing the kind of work most of us avert our eyes from. It is considered to be degrading by most! Right?
But, believe it or not, she’s happy at her job, because now she has a regular paycheck, even when it doesn’t pay much, but helps her make ends meet; she has all the mental peace in the world, which she always yearned for! Her son completed his board exams with a whooping distinction and won medallions! (Mind you, he barely had the time to study, forget the tuition which most of us could afford!)
He is now in the 12th standard (2nd P.U) studying science in a government college, and aspires to work in a big company (similar to ours) as an engineer! Her daughter has dropped out of 10th standard after failing a single subject; English; but, she plans on rewriting the exam.
She has tears of joy and sadness in her eyes, thinking about her life and as she talks about her children! They have come this far, and won’t give up! She’s a proud parent!
Her son’s dream is our reality, yet the search for something great, hasn’t left our eyes!! I convince her to support him through his higher studies; Dreams shouldn’t be taken lightly! I have requested her to let me help her daughter. I want to will help her daughter to prepare for the exams, and hopefully, this time, I would have the sense of satisfaction, through their dreams! They deserve a better life!
Is there someone around you, who you can help with? Look around, I’m sure someone needs you, right now! Will you help?