Saturday, March 8, 2008


I want to reach ten posts but played with different ideas. I'm not really sure what I would talk about tonight so I'm leaving the title blank until I'm done writing.

Let me see, my children? No, these days, we're running normal lives. Pets? No, that's for my other blog. Hmm... yes, I will talk about my househelp instead.

Merly is a forty two year-old woman who works for me for the past two years now. She's married to a man who works as "kargador" (meaning, he helps carry heavy parcels and boxes or sacks of things for people). They have nine children, the two older girls are not married but have 4 children. So, they are fifteen (15) in the family and they live in a makeshift house with no room. The ground is their floor, rusted galvanized iron are used as walls, and for their roof, a waterproof canvas with some torn portions, just to protect them from the heat of the sun and the pouring rain.

She comes in at 8:00 in the morning and goes home after we have our dinner at night. Merly is a good helper, she doesn't have to be told what to do. I often tell her to let her older children work too, to help with the family expenses especially food. She says, they cannot leave their children for who will take care of them? She even sends her third daughter to a private high school (although the tuition is not so high there), while the rest of the younger children go to public elementary school.

She tries so hard to put food on the table with her meager wage from me. Her husband does not earn much, usually fifty pesos a day which is good for 2 kilos of rice only. She puts up with this but the one thing that she hated most about her husband is that he womanizes, even with their state of living. So, she didn't go home for six days, vowing she won't go back to her husband anymore.

Yesterday, her second daughter came to let her know that her eldest once again left home and that her grandchild is vomitting and has diarrhea. So poor Merly advanced some money from me and went home to bring her granddaughter to the doctor. Today, she is absent.

I'm thinking, to what extent can a mother sacrifice for her family? Merly is a very simple woman with a very simple ambition in life. She exerts strength and has a very strong determination to feed her family three square meals a day. She just wants a husband who can help her but even this is deprived from her. She cries and her body aches, but she hides them. She puts on a happy smile and continues to do her chores as if she doesn't have any problem. That's Merly, my househelp!

3 comments: said...

Oh my, that story makes me so sad. I will keep her in my prayers. She sounds like a stronger woman than I could ever be, working so hard for her family.

The_Sphinx's World said...

She really is but another news just hit her, the second daughter with the one child, is pregnant again and the man just left without any forwarding address. I can't understand why her children just keep on adding her graver burden.

Bahay BJ said...

i appreciate this post, that's really touching.

I must say not all mothers are like Merly. Some are just concern with their own luxuries or wants.

I also can't understand why such mother exist, for me legally they are called "mother", for they have child/children. But with the real and deep essence of the word, I can't consider them as one.

I'm happy to hear this kind of story like that of Merly, she may not have great achievements but her heart for her family is very inspiring.Precious and Priceless.