Thursday, August 27, 2009

Blessings (3rd of a series, Maid in the Philippines)

Nannymania, one of my favorite games, real life is not so different.

We did damage control on the Yaya. We saved her, reestablished relations, and conditions. My attitude adjusted as I started to relax. She became happier, and me? I was no longer a nazi.

Right now, our maid is from Cebu. Also in a 1-year contract, She is referred by my friend’s family help of 40 years.

The yaya and the maid get along pretty well. I thank God everyday for the two. They both care for Audrey and our home really well.

Both seem kind hearted enough and fond of my daughter. They show my baby her mobiles “Look Bibi Ooh-dree…tiddi Ber…”

As a friend put it, if we are looking for the ideal domestic help, they are also looking for the ideal employers.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Dementor & the Mercenary (2nd of a series, Maid In The Philippines)

Dealing with domestic help really tries your patience. It literally makes you laugh, cry, roll your eyes, bite your lip, and everything in between.

Our first maid was one we called The Dementor. Gloomy as hell, I literally woke up in the morning and ran away from the house, not caring that I could give birth anytime.

She demanded too many things, and refused to halp take care of the baby when the time comes. She also refused to accompany me to my workplace to get healthcare papers less than a week before I gave birth. She could not cook anything that was not instant. She said she had a cough and colds because our location was polluted.

She got sick with some kind of flu, and asked to go on leave.

This happened just as I was looking for a way to tell her to go away forever and ever.

And ever.

I jumped at the chance and told her to get all her stuff, get well, and never come back.


But in a nice way.

Our next maid was hired A.D. (After Delivery) She is this hardened, mercenary domestic who was referred to us by our brother in law. She was a dream maid after The Dementor. She was efficient, knew the ropes, knew the place, and smart.

A little too smart.

But before I continue, I’m establishing that at that time we needed a maid, she was the ideal type for us.

She cooked well, and cleaned things fast. But she also stressed me out. I had to constantly follow her around (with my swollen A.D. feet) to micromanage and check on what thing that I have neglected to tell her NOT to use, touch, or eat…that she would almost always be using, touching, and eating.

Worse was when I had to tell her to stop using the washing machine, AND the hypoallergenic detergent, AND the fabric softener on HER clothes EVERYDAY. I do buy them the soft kind of detergent for handwashing their clothes as she requested. GRRRR…

All this was going on while I was struggling with caring for the baby, with the new Yaya referred by my niece’s nanny. At the same time I was pressured about not producing milk.

The poor yaya absorbed most of my frustrations. I used a sharp tone with her at all times, and gave her a hard time as she is the one I am mostly in contact with.

One morning, I went to the maids’ room/laundry area to find the mercenary maid using a capful of Perwoll on her 4 clothes. Another capful on the wiping cloths. I also discovered my supposed unopened Downy Antibac already 1/3 empty. I wanted to scream at her and beat the shit out of her before I throw her out the window.

I did not do the last 2 things. I could only scream at her, and stamp my swollen foot.

One Sunday, she resigned. She said she was bored.



Go fuck yourself and I hope to God your pimples will double in number, you vain little cunt!

On the same Sunday the mercenary maid resigned, my brother also told me the yaya texted him about not wanting to finish her 1-year contract.

I figured this was the work of the little mercenary maid. I told the latter to leave the same day. But only after cleaning the toilet.

(to be cont'd.)

Friday, August 14, 2009

Maid in the Philippines (1st of a series)

I always refer to the pre-baby days as our “live-in” days and B.C. (Before Childbirth). We had a 1 bedroom place at a furnished condotel.

We picked up after ourselves. Came and went as we pleased, slept in, snuck out, and I walked around preparing food for 2 in my Cami Diaz outfits.

As I became less and less mobile due to my belly, we had to “borrow” maids from my mother-in-law to clean for us and keep me company during my one bedrest episode.

When it was time for grown up environments, we had to move to a bigger place to accommodate our growing nuclear family unit and needs.

1- a yaya (nanny) for the baby
2- a maid to clean/cook/play with the yaya

Becoming a mom and caring for your baby, is mostly biology taking over. Your instincts kick in and you are fine.

Becoming a home-maker/household manager with maids…now, there’s a challenge. It’s probably the most difficult job I have ever tried to do.

Props to anyone who had been doing it for some time.

Dealing with problematic ones ages you.

to be cont'd.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Working It

click here link to bamaMoms

Since 2nd week of May, I haven’t booked a single schedule for any jobs at ABS-CBN. My maternity leave has been unofficially extended.

Before my leave, I’ve started to get requested by clients for international (motion graphics) plugs. But the local broadcast business is cruel, and memories are short. Therefore, however politically incorrect, having a baby gives you a couple of handicaps:

1-Your hours are not as flexible.
2-Nobody remembers what you did B.C.(Before Childbirth)

This means one needs to work extra hard. You can’t complain, and need to still be on top of trends and techniques. Otherwise, someone younger and hungrier will be more than willing to take your place…at a lower rate.

Oh man. I gotta work it.


Think I’m ready for more…my daughter needs those pretty baby shades and I need those pretty mommy shoes…SO BRING IT! *insert maniacal laughter here*

…that is, if they could give us our schedules earlier than 2 hours before, so one can plan the day better. I had to keep refusing work 3 times on the basis of always being caught unprepared. (i.e. I get a call @ 6pm for a midnight schedule. No chance to rest because your day was already over, it started at 5 a.m.!)

It makes one wonder about the claims of the station being “ka-pamilya”. Perhaps it’s not the ideal place to work if you’ve just expanded your family.

On the brighter side, completely unrelated: Audrey sleeps longer at night now. I think she can sleep for as long as 5 hours.

Friday, August 7, 2009


January 25, 1933 – August 1, 2009

Rest In Peace Tita Cory. You have made so many statements in life and in death.


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