Thursday, May 24, 2007

Choices we make !

I recently came to know about choices two women made in similar situations . And it got me thinking what I would do faced with the same .

Situation 1 -

The cozy couple have a baby . The mother quits her teaching job and is at home with the child until she's 8 months old. They manage to find a distant male relative who's a widower and keen to come to their big city and take care of their child for a decent salary. They are thrilled because this man is almost like family and is great with kids as is vouched by the mother who's seen him when she was a wee baby. All is fine - the mother goes back to work , they have a great routine with the relative taking care of the baby.

And then one day , as the relative was heating and pouring water for the child's bath , the child crawled over and upset the whole bucket . Imagine a whole bucket of scalding hot water - the child had burns all over and had to be dipped in penicillin to avoid infections . The relative was besides himself as he had done the unthinkable and thwarted the trust they had put on him. By the time the parents were contacted and came home , it was well past 4 PM ( these were the times where mobiles were not heard of ) . The mother was besides herself and aghast . She decided that had she been there , it wouldn't have happened . So she put her foot down and told her husband she wouldn't be going back to work ever. And he can just find some way to run the house on his salary. And that's that !!!

The relative lived on with them for a few more months but the guilt never wore off. And he left for the village. I wish he could see the baby now - she's the most beautiful woman I know - flawless ebony skin, shiny black hair and the best tinkling laugh I ever heard - My cousin Anu .

Situation 2 -

The cozy couple have a child. Mother stays at home on extended maternity leave . Meanwhile, they find a lady from the village who's been with their family since she was young. She spends time training the lady to look after the baby boy - feeds, bath, changing nappies , the works. When she seems reasonably trained , she goes back to work .Things are working smoothly.

Then one day , she gets a call from the neighbour saying the child was crying endlessly and since the maid didn't seem to be doing anything about it , the neighbour had barged in with the spare key she had and found the maid had dozed off while watching TV and the child all of 9 months was in the next room hungry, wet and miserable. And when she went to kitchen for milk , she found that the milk had been watered down by the maid after she helped herself to some .

So the mother gets home to find a content sleeping baby with the neighbour, fires the maid and stays at home. But their financial situation doesn't allow her the luxury of staying at home. Yes, they could get the next meal on the table. But not send their son to a good school etc etc. So she finds a creche ( expensive ) run by an anglo-Indian and goes with that. She puts aside her religious beliefs ( they are conservative no-meat brahmins ) and decides her son is better off not learning any prejudices of a typical brahmin upbringing. Her only regret is the drinking habit of the man of house where the creche was run. She's faced with naysaying of the highest order with her SIL accusing her of being a money-minded bitch with no concern for her child .As the child grew, she continued to work and her husband went to the gulf for a few years. And the child went to the best boarding school in the state when he was in sixth standard.Went on to do his engineering and MBA . And got married to the most gorgeous woman on earth - beautiful, talented, I could on - for she is Moi !!!

So what do you think ? What would you do faced by this situation ? Both are similar - although a baby burnt is far more serious than a wet , hungry baby. But then again , maybe not .

1 comment:

Just like that said...

Hmmm. difficult to be judgemental.

Sit.1. I understand the mother getting upset, but I feel sorry for the relative never getting over his guilt, esp if he had put his heart into the 'job'.

Sit.2. Guess the mother made the best of her options. And the naysayers had to eat their words.