When I was a teenager I had a theory that my Mom and I had what couples call these days irreconcilable differences. Yes, I know she’s my Mom. How could that be possible?! Well, it happens! We both had different interests which made our relationship very hard at times. She wanted me to be a journalist, I wanted to be an engineer…. and my Dad was somewhere in the middle of all of it.
You may be asking why am I writing about this now. Well today I noticed something that I never did before. One of the things I believed created a huge gap between my Mom and myself was cooking.
Yes! You see, most Moms around the Middle East like to teach their daughters how to cook and to brag about how good they are at it. Can you blame them though? There’s a reason the Middle Eastern cuisine tastes really good! However, in my Mom’s case she was never able to brag. She was always desperate to teach me how to cook but at the same time she didn’t want to keep me away from my books. I knew that very well and of course it was my excuse to run away from it all!
When it was Sundays and time for big family gatherings, and with it my Mom’s famous Tabboule and Mloukhiye, I made sure not to step into that kitchen. My Mom was honestly so desperate that the minute i did step into the kitchen she would grab me immediately to “ask me to taste the food”.
Then that would be followed by “so what do you think of it, good right?”.
To which i would nod “yes……”. The food was really good but I knew exactly what was coming after that.
“You know it’s super easy. let me tell you how I did it”.
As she would speak I would give my self a hard time for falling in to that trap and tell my self “I will never be the type that cooks”.
Today I remembered all that and I couldn’t help but smile. Years later I am cooking and baking and actually enjoying it.
Like any Mom, my Mama just wanted to give and give and give. I thought she wanted to brag about it to her friends but the truth is she just wanted to have a mother daughter moment. I was always too proud to admit that I needed her because I thought I could do anything on my own. I feel in a way that I robbed her from the chance to be my Mom and I am her only daughter!
We usually need our parents the most when we are children or teenagers for guidance and support. For me, I feel it’s happened the other way around. I need her now more than I ever did. Her and I, we don’t really have “irreconcilable differences” as my teenage self used to think. I am actually growing more and more like her every day. But maybe that’s the way it is. As we grow older we learn to appreciate our parents and their presence in our life.
Sometimes these days, I call to ask her about a recipe and I can tell from her voice how happy that makes her. I guess i’m just trying to make up for all the years I gave her a hard time over cooking!