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My Housekeeper - Personal Essay

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It amazes me that hiding behind the face of a strong stable woman, lie such hardships and misfortune. My housekeeper, Christina, may seem like your average American worker trying to support a family, however, she is much more than this. Christina works tirelessly each and everyday to support her husband and five others living in a small two-bedroom house with her. Her husband works occasionally, however, most of the family's source of income is from her housekeeping services. I find it surprising that one woman is determined enough to meet the needs of her family and friends, regardless of the situation. Christina will do anything to provide meals and other necessities for her family.

Before sitting down and talking with my housekeeper, Christina, I did not have any idea of her life at home. Besides the occasional Spanish conversation with her, I actually have not really even spoken to Christina. To my surprise, a life that is practically non-existent to the clients she associates with, opened up to me. And this life is very hard to decipher, especially when Christina is always joyful and never seems to lose the smile on her face, even when working. I guess she does not want others to feel sorry for her. She must feel that the help of others is not completely necessary, when really, this is all Christina needs. Cleaning about five houses a day, for a very low salary, does not seem to me like it is enough to support four others. However, Christina finds a way to make ends meet.

You may ask, why don't all of the other persons in the house seek work? Besides her husband, many of them are actually children that are enrolled in a local public school. Christina has to juggle the tasks of driving her children to school, cleaning houses, and picking her children up from school. Because she works while her children are taught, Christina has little free time to herself. Christina brings the children home from school only to find that she needs to cook them dinner, and even clean her own house. Although faced with tremendous responsibilities, Christina copes well with the task at hand. She strives to make her less-than-ordinary routine appear to be usual, and does it out of the kindness of her heart for her friends and family.

I can't help but ponder why a woman who returns home everyday, to find herself amongst six others in a two bedroom house, does not stop and breakdown and just plain give up. It truly comes across as if computers, iPods, furniture, etc. have no importance in Christina's life. She is just happy to be alive and have a home. Christina focuses her attention on the more important things like family, friends, and her children; a lesson that can be taught to almost anyone. Love, compassion, and happiness encompass her mindset toward life, as really if you think about it, nothing else is needed.
 When you first look at a person, it is quite difficult to get a sense of what that



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