A typical day from the diary of "My life".
8:50 am - The doorbell rings. It would be the maid. I should also wake up. Have to get the things sorted. Just freshen up and have a cup of tea. (15 minutes)
Clean the bed once everyone is awake (15 minutes). I need to wake up the kid and get him ready before the class begins. (35 minutes) I have to give the kid milk before the class begins. ( 5 minutes). The kid is four-years-old. He has never gone to school. How will he manage to sit for his online classes? The class is only for an hour. Don't worry. I will sit along with him for an hour. (1 hour).
I have to get breakfast ready. It is usually rush time in the morning. "Why don't you take some help"? "We are not that financially strong to keep help to cook meals. It's okay. Anyhow, it takes just 45 minutes for the chopping and cooking. Will at least save some money that we could spend on some leisure trip". (45 minutes).
"Oh, it is already noon. I will just serve breakfast and go to take a bath". (25 minutes). "The table is so dirty. It was not cleaned after breakfast was finished. It is okay. We don't have so much furniture in our house. These days maid asks for about Rs. 700 a month to do the dusting. It takes just 15 minutes to wipe everything. We can save some money on this, so that is next weekend. We can plan an outing for ourselves. It has been a long time that we have gone out together". (15 minutes)
"Oho, why have you not finished the breakfast till now? Wait. I will just come and make you eat". "Only a mother can make the child eat properly". (30 minutes) "Great! Everything looks good now. I will just have a quick breakfast (1:15 pm) and do the office work, that is pending since yesterday." ( 10 minutes)
Opened the laptop, to finish the office work. Worked for about 30 minutes. "Mumma, what are you cooking for lunch today? Oh, It is already 2 pm. Wait baby, Mumma will just cook something for you. " (45 minutes) "I seriously have some urgent office work to do. Would you please eat lunch properly and finish it off on your own." Switch on the laptop again to finish the work. (30 minutes)
"Baby, till now the chapattis are lying on the plate as it is. Why you have not finished lunch till now? Why do you always need Mumma to help you to finish the food?" (30 minutes). "It is time for you to sleep now." "Mummy, come and help me to sleep. " (15 minutes). "Now I at least have 2 hours to finish up my work. I will try to complete all the office work".
I work for 45 minutes before the doorbell rings. "Ma'am, there was a complaint registered for poor connectivity of the internet." "Yes, Come inside and check." (20 minutes) Back to do the office work. I started doing a writeup story for the next blog. It was 5 pm. I worked for 10 minutes before the doorbell rings again. Maid has come to wash the utensils. "Oh, I forgot to put the clothes in the washing machine. I will go and put them. The benefit of an automatic machine is that you need to put the clothes and the detergent, and everything else gets done on its own". (5 minutes)
Come back to my work station. Deleted the complete writeup and started afresh. "Why"? "Could not have the same thought flow again. It is okay. It happens at times." (20 minutes). "Mumma, I am awake". "Hi, baby. Good evening. I will just get some milk for you". (15 minutes) "Mumma, can we play"? "Can Mumma do some work for an hour, and then we will play?" "Mumma, you never play with me. I am watching Television."
I work for a half-hour, but could not concentrate on work, because of the guilt inside me for not playing with the kid. (30 minutes) "Come, let us play for 30 minutes before Mumma starts cooking dinner. We play for about 30-40 minutes". I start cooking dinner and side by side have a cup of tea. (1 hour)
"The dinner is ready and served. Come, wash your hand and have dinner. We have to finish the homework as well". (1 hour 30 minutes) "Let's go. Your friend is waiting". We go down for a walk and the kid plays for an hour. "Baby, now you go and brush your teeth. Mumma will just come back and we will sleep. It is already 11:30 pm." (20 minutes)
Come back to the work station. Work for a couple of hours and go to sleep at 1:30 am. Relatable. This is a kind of a typical day out of the routine from the lives of most of the married females of the country. The schedule may change, the work may change, but this is what happens. There are so many to-dos running in the mind of the female, other than all this, that men could never even understand.
The money that is being saved to have a leisure trip with the family is all gone. You wake up after years when you turn 40 - 45, that all the trips that you were planning to and were saving that money for, was confined to your house to your parent's house or your in-laws' house.
To all the ladies, who have a husband who takes part in the above household chores, you are lucky to have someone like that with you. Love him, and care for him. He is the one who treats you equal. You should be proud to have someone like that with you.
To all the ladies, who could relate to the day. It is time to wake up and take care of yourself. Nobody will help you other than you. Take some time for yourself. Value time. Spend on yourself and your well being. Don't save for the trips which are never going to happen.
Every small task that you are doing takes something very important from your life, i.e., your time. Value your time. Spend that on the people who value your presence. Spend your time on and with the people who love spending time with you. Spend that time with the people who need you the most. It may be your kid and it may be your parents.
We talk a lot about Postnatal depression. But the monotonous, frustrating, work-from-home life is also one of the biggest cause of depression. Till the time your partner is equally supportive, and also be a part of taking responsibility for the household chores, it will be very difficult for any woman in this country to have good mental health.