Now We’re Cooking…
Until about 18 months ago, I never cooked. My repertoire consisted of breakfast foods & I was lovingly dubbed “The Frozen Food Queen” by my family. I could bake up a storm, but if it wasn’t microwavable or came in a box that required nothing more than opening a can of tuna…it was not going to appear on anyone’s plate.
The reasons for this were many:
- My grandmothers both made me baker’s helper from the time I could walk.
- My mother always shoo’ed me out of the kitchen while cooking.
- My mother was terrified of us kids even making a sandwich with a butter knife.
- My mother’s OCD tendencies did not allow for us to leave a crumb in sight. (Funny, I married her male counterpart, huh?)
- I could not possibly conceive of having more than one thing “going” at a time. It seemed like utter chaos to me.
I should mention that the chaos thing follows me. I have the Chaos Arrows tattooed on my right arm. It is ever-present in my life. I can NOT function in chaos. I shut down. I need order, but I have a hard time keeping order. The minute I get a hint of things (house, work, kids) getting out of order, instead of fixing it, I shut down and then it becomes a mountain.
But enough about all that…That’s just background. Here’s what I REALLY wanted to talk about.
What Do You Do When Your AS Munchkins Start Cooking – Unsupervised?
About 18 months ago I started cooking. The kids were coming to Germany. I got re-married. I wanted to take care of everyone. Turns out, I’m kinda good at it. I treat it like a puzzle. I LOVE puzzles.
So does Max. Max and I are very much alike in many ways. The whole order/chaos thing. Well, there are a lot of parallels…
From the time he was born, Max was always very deliberate. When he was 2 & Madison was 3 1/2 we went to the swimming pool at our hotel. I would not let go of Madison, but Max didn’t worry me. He watched every step and I knew he wouldn’t accidentally fall in. Madison, on the other hand, would watch everywhere BUT where he was going. (He still does!)
Max has started cooking. He’s a regular Egg-Aficionado! He’s woken me up to a plate full of delicious eggs. I’ve asked him not to cook while Mommy isn’t there to watch, but tonight I realized he’s still been doing it.
I went to get eggs for the dinner I was making and we were out.
I am completely overcome with pride and absolute fear at the same time. Pride because he loves doing it and feels good about it. Absolute fear because if something went wrong – Max would shut down. Just like when the TV comes on too loud on a static channel. Suddenly, he can’t find the remote. He can only clamp his hands over his ears and rock.
I want to foster EVERY SINGLE THING he is good at. I don’t want him to get hurt.
Is my own need for control stifling him? Or am I just being a cautious parent? Thoughts? Ideas? Compromises?
*NOTE: I realized halfway through that I had neglected to state the ages of my kids. Morgan is 14, Madison is 13 and Max is 11.