Laxmi Natraj



Laxmi Natraj


A Surprising Change

A Surprising Change

4 mins

Surabhi opened the door. Her maid stood there with a swollen face and red eyes. Surabhi did not ask her anything. She had already got the SMS, that the maid was coming late and today, instead of the usual 8 AM she had come only in the afternoon and that too with a look like this. She did ask her anything about the reason for her crying immediately.

Evening at 4 PM she volunteered to tell the story. She said, “Amma, Police arrested our Sonu. With great difficulties after begging the girls’ parents, they agreed to take back their cases and I could bring him back home”

Surabhi said,” At least now you and your husband give your son some good advice and straighten up his life” She knew telling anything to her is of no use and the boy is not going to improve.

Kishore overheard the conversation and said, “Surabhi, why can’t this woman leave him in the jail itself? At least then he will get his brain straight”

This maid was with the family for more than 25 years. She was an honest and sincere worker. The only problem with her was she pampered and spoiled her son Sonu beyond her limits. He was a fat good for nothing boy failing in all the classes and finally reached 10th. The funny part is even after this failure of Sonu in 10th, she and her husband took a huge loan and through some illegal method put him in a college. 

Both Surabhi and Kishore tried their best to stop her. Surabhi said, “When he cannot pass even 10th how will he ever be passing B.Com college? If he is not willing to appear again for 10th put him for workshop skill learning where he can learn some mechanics and thus get a job”.

As expected Sonu failed two years in college continuously and was expelled from college for his behaviour. His mother found one or another job for her darling boy. But in none of the places, he worked more than eight days and gave up giving some excuses. Now just sitting at home, enjoying TV and cell phone he went to the next step, fell in love with the married girl living next to their house. Not just this, he tried to elope with the girl and was caught and arrested by the girl’s family.

Added to all this, afterwards, due to his failed love, she said that Sonu had gone into depression and she was taking him to a Psychiatrist. Surabhi had stopped giving any advice but just helped her with the money as and when she asked.

Suddenly the shadow of Corona-19 hit the city and like all other maids, she stopped coming for work. After 6 months when things got eased a little, she got herself tested like all other maids, and started coming for the job.

The story she now told about Sonu was too fascinating to believe. Earlier, Sonu had learnt to drive. One day their neighbour was very sick with a high fever and could not get the ambulance. Sonu borrowed his uncle’s auto and drove the patient and her husband to Covid care hospital.

The staff in the hospital appreciated his volunteered work and offered him a Plastic total Covid outfit and told him to use it while driving the patient. Words spread and by the time he reached home. he got another call for help. Sonu now becomes a regular known face in the hospital. He knew all the various hospitals and staff. The families whom he drove gave some payment, without his asking and day and night he worked hard.

Just when the second wave started, one of the hospitals recruited him as an assistant help, as there was an acute shortage of manpower. As a front line worker, he got vaccinated also first. He stayed in the hospital itself and worked day and night. Every day seeing the suffering and the pain of patients and their family changed his heart. He became the kindest, most sincere and hardworking staff in the hospital. In some cases, he even helped with the cremation of the dead with proper dignity. The maid ended the story happily and said, “Everyone loves Sonu so much now” 

After she left Surabhi looked at her Kishore and said in surprise, “Who would have imagined, a spoiled Sonu would change into this good man finally! The pandemic while destroying so many had done well to him”

Kishore said, “Surabhi, every person in life just needs dignity or honour of acceptance. When Sonu finally got this acceptance and dignity he became the real good human being”

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