Day 94 – selfless
Today I want to share with you someone I admire a lot. She is not related to me but I she is a friend and a sister. Let me tell you how I’ve come to know her. Her name is Fe. She came to our family in 2008 as our house help. She came at a time when I just had my second operation and she was a blessing to me, my husband and my Mother who took turns in taking care of me.
I grew up seeing house helpers who were trained by my Mother’s kind of cleaning, cooking and home management. When I got married, my husband and I decided not to have help since I chose to be a stay at home wife and could do all the chores for us. But before my father passed he requested that my husband and I and my brother and his new wife transfer and live at their home in the south of Manila. My brother and I did as requested. My parents home was big enough for two families, my husband I stayed at the bigger side of the home with my Mother and my brother and his wife at the adjacent smaller home. At that time my Mother brought with her the house help they had in our home in the province. We all did our share of chores and the house help became my mother’s side kick.
But life always happens and we cannot control its circumstances. Finding the right house help became a problem for all of us. Then came Fe. She is a married woman with one child. She left the province to be a house help in Manila to help her then husband raise their 8 year old child. I call Fe, Juliet. Why? Because my mother’s sister, my Aunt is named Fe. So I asked her her mother’s name and she said its Julieta. Juliet was perfect then.
In the years that Juliet has been in our family, I was witnessed to the dedication she brought in day in and day out. She would wake up early to make breakfast for my mother, and water the garden. And she would stay up late to take care of my brother’s needs before his call center shift. When I was still actively joining bazaars, she would help me prepare my things and wish me luck. She is sweet, kind and very motherly. As the years, passed, I have become close to her, she became my friend and we share life’s ups and downs. When my mother was sick and in her death bed, she was there to watch over my Mama with us. She was also one of the beneficiaries from my Mama’s last will.
Her only son, Justine stays with us every summer vacation. Her husband, well, he did not see the gem in Juliet’s heart and left her. But that hurdle did not stop Juliet from dreaming big for Justin and herself. She would ask me to help her learn the english language, we would talk in english during meal times because unlike other households, we eat together with our house help. When my husband and I arrived from KL last December, she made it a point to cook our favorite dishes, fixed our room and made the house ready for us. No one told her what to do. She knows me, she knows our family, she knows what we love and she knows our favorites.
To me and my husband, she is family. A sister. A friend. We are lucky to have found her and I think she is also lucky to have found us. She is not afraid to voice her feelings to us, not afraid to ask for help and not afraid to say she lacks knowledge in some things. I have always appreciated her honesty, it is one of the best practices that brought her close to me. Now, as I embark on many art journeys, she is the first to tell me her opinion, no sugar coating just pure honest observation and I love that.
I wish her the best in everything she sets her heart into. This year, she vowed to learn to converse in english. We will help and cheer her on. I hope that she will choose to stay with us for many years to come. She promised to take care of me when I grow old. And I promised to open a retirement plan for her.