The Contented Life


Dec 4 , 2022
By Kidist Yidnekachew ( Kidist Yidnekachew has degrees in psychology and journalism and communications. She can be reached at kidyyidnekachew@gmail.com. )


What are the odds of seeing a housemaid who loves the job dearly and wakes up every morning to do the chores with excitement?

Well, this maid inspired the story.

Over the past two months, I got to know a young lady, probably in her 20s, who has been living with my neighbour. I had the chance to observe her behaviour. I had never seen anyone who takes joy in doing chores. She does everything passionately and treats the kids as her own. That is rare.

The woman is happy doing what she does. My neighbour has also confirmed that she just smiles and heads straight to her chores on rare occasions, she wakes her up from sleep to prepare the children’s lunchbox.

Sometimes I find my children irritating, but she spares her time to spend the day laughing and playing with other people's kids. I often hear her laughing on the veranda.

It has become contagious to listen to stories of housemaids stealing, abusing property or worse, taking the lives of innocent children. And then there is her kind: responsible, caring and compassionate. Perhaps two months is a short time to make a judgement of someone. Maybe she could be pretending, and her true colours may appear in due time. After all, everyone was once loving, patient and caring until they got tired, angry, hurt or simply burned out.

For a long time, I used to think if a person is good, they will spend the rest of their life being good. But that cannot be farther from the truth. Circumstances define us. We can only be good after we have been tested with adversities and come out on the other side, shining until then. We are good people with the potential to be bad at any time, like a bomb waiting to explode. The saying goes all villains were heroes at some point in life.

I guess only time is an accurate judge of character. But for now, I know I found this girl inspiring. We hire maids as we do not want or cannot keep up with our chores. Let us not forget some people treat their pets better than their housemaids.

Inspiration is everywhere if we know where to look and acknowledge its value once it is found. Sometimes we find it in the least expected of places. I tend to agree with the saying that people come to our lives for a reason and to teach us a lesson.

Personal stories could be taken as motivational tools when learning from others’ experiences. I often see people mentioning big-time celebrities as their role models. Someone who values helping and educating others finds inspiration from a selfless teacher in a local school. A successful career path seeker would look for the stories of self-made businessmen and women.

But how many people aspire to be content in their lives and appreciate it? How many people love what they do? How many people have inner peace no matter what life throws at them?

I want to think I belong to each group.

For many, a career is a means to an end—survival. Some genuinely enjoy what they do because they do it out of passion. Individuals also do things they are not fond of simply to make a living out of them. Not many are genuinely content with their current position in life.

I think people need a specific mindset to enjoy that kind of contentment. However, not everyone dreams of getting and working towards their goals and achieving them.

Finding happiness and contentment in a situation and making the best out of the experience should teach us to be grateful for our lives, even if it was not what we had in mind. Life's essence is finding its hidden beauty through challenges while enjoying the ride.



PUBLISHED ON Dec 04,2022 [ VOL 23 , NO 1179]



Kidist Yidnekachew has degrees in psychology and journalism and communications. She can be reached at kidyyidnekachew@gmail.com.





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