On Sundays I have part time help from an odd job laborer who works hard for his money to feed his immediate family.
Hailing from Bangladesh, he has been faithfully arriving at my place for part time work for some 3 years now.
Time flies and I remember him when he was first working for me. His English has improved and I too, have learned some words in his native language.
I tend to pack a food parcel of biscuits and snacks including instant coffee granules for his week’s consumption.
This I learnt from my mum who always practice compassion, humility and kindness to others. I do not talk down or sneer at these hardworking individuals.
I remember my then boyfriend who eschewed compassion and touted kindness. But strangely, he despised foreign workers in reality.
I never could understand why, till I saw him pretending to be compassionate to one peddling pocket tissues in a crowd and he magnanimously drawing out $2 to buy from this peddler.
Eureka! He paid and did a deed in the presence of people. A crowd must exist to form an audience for him to do a good deed! This was his methodology to earn brownie points!
He once chided me for being “stingy” to him and not giving him treats. I felt no need to do so and it was just sticks and stones to me.
I refused to cave in to his requests as my money was better off helping the deserving. Besides, he had oodles of cash as he is rich!
One day, a Chinese national who hailed from Jilin visited me and was seeking employment as she was soon going to lose her job here, given the tightening of foreign work permits. I sought my then boyfriend’s help as he had a thriving business and could support her application.
His immediate response to her was that she was nothing more than a prostitute! I hated him there and then as a sweeping statement like that was painful.
Social work requires commitment on the part of the volunteer. To volunteer, I must commit and each term comes with 3 years of service to the community.
Come later in July, I will be sworn in for my second term of 3 years. I am committed to help and improve the lives of seniors.
Come rain or shine, in good health or bad unless I am incarcerated, I will serve this community.
I have seen volunteers coming to volunteer for perks and or medals. They disappear as quickly after they commit.
This, to me, is not commitment but hinging on the glamour of the voluntary post to attain recognition and use it to purport your business goals, showing self as a deserving social entrepreneur.
Being humble is essential to me.
I started out from upper middle income status and though I have not experienced poverty, I know what it is to be frugal as I worked my self up after being booted out of the family house as a result of a political coup designed by my delightful sister and brother. I found self as the pariah of the family and was left roofless.
Working hard, I sat and supped with the lower echelons of society, learning poverty and experiencing it through their eyes. I was blessed with kindness of friends who gave me a hand.
I never forgot this important lesson and though today I have arrived somewhat (basically surviving with a roof over my head and a job), I never forgot this important lesson.
I also remember painful moments in love when my then boyfriend chose a dying sister’s wealth about to be bequeathed to a woman he should woo.
I was a good catch till he realized the abode in The Beverly Hills of the little red dot was soon gone as I was penniless!
Mind you, this is the same twit who came crawling back to me years later when I was a head honcho in an organization who went on to hire his company’s business which gave him fixed income of more than $200,000 a month for a service his team could do.
The 3 precepts as I call them are vital to me.
Without compassion, comes no understanding and the meaning of humility is lost.
Commitment is what gets me out of the poor house to achieve and be determined in what I set self to achieve in.
In looking back, with two empty hands and no roof over my head, I have succeeded in living life in dignity, giving and sharing with the right people and at the right time.
There are loads of wolves in sheep’s clothing.
I am especially blessed that the deities of the realm pitied me and took my ex boyfriend away because if I had married him with the belief he cared for me, it was not the case.
I would have been saddled with his debt and greed of wanting a quick buck and leaving me sadly behind whilst he two times and seeks affairs behind my back as he does with his current spouse.
Keep the faith is my mantra – not all men or husbands are bad. There are also good and loving siblings.
What I experienced is probably fated.
Had I not gone through all these trials, I doubt I would have the compassion, humility and commitment to be a better person always!
I might have been a character worst off than my siblings, or even my then boyfriend 😀