”Let A Man Cook”
While motherhood can be challenging in many ways, it can be a lot of fun also. Especially if you embrace it with positivity. Especially if you do not look at it with some kind of an obligation nature has thrust on you, especially if you let your child be. If you do not force too many rules on him. If you let him explore. If you let him learn from his mistakes. If you, time to time, fill his blind spots. If you let him make a mess and then teach him to clear it all up. If you become involved in what he does not as a parent but rather as a partner. If you draw a line not for him but yourself. If you do not become an overbearing parent. If you do not consciously or unconsciously, enforce the usual social norms on him. If you teach him to respect the other sex too. If you let him grow in thoughts too. If you help him build on his self-esteem.
My Son, right from the beginning, had been very fond of cooking. Whenever he wished, he would be in the kitchen with me. Sometimes to help me. Sometimes to create his own dishes. It could be his specially hand-crafted burgers with all the sauces in the fridge mixed, or it could be pasta done in a butter chicken gravy, or it could be a mocktail of all kinds of flavors put together. Some of the dishes used to be amazing, and some total disasters. The disastrous ones were too devoured with much love and patience simply because it was made by son. Yes, gentle feedback definitely used to go so that the dish is better next time, with full marks for the efforts.
I would be dishonest if I say, I did not lose my head seeing the condition of the kitchen later. I did, and all I wanted to do was pull my hair, obviously, because I couldn’t have pulled his. Bechara bacha! But I chose to take it all in my stride. A little extra cleaning would have caused me no harm, especially when my son was learning something precious. He was learning to be independent. He was learning to survive if life takes him far from me, to another city, to another country. He was learning to survive and look after his family in the face of any adversity. He was learning to come off of a feudal mentality that says the kitchen is only for girls. He was learning to be equal with the other sex. He was learning to hold even the house chores with much dignity and regard. And I am glad I let him be.
Today, my son can cook anything under the sun. Especially the Chinese and the continental dishes prepared by him are to die for. He can easily do healthy dishes too. He knows how to cook in the minimum of the oil and least of the effort. Besides, he can survive easily if we are gone for days. Most importantly, he has learned to cook with a minimum of utensils and without wasting any water. He tries to keep the kitchen also fairly clean. However, the basic genetic difference of how we keep and how a man would keep is still there. But either we stop worrying about it or do the rest because they have done the most