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The Female Festival Mantra Flaw

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How many of us have seen our mothers and other womenfolk of the family making mirth and merry outside the kitchen on festivals? While festivity has become a part of the DNA of Indians, women still struggle to make it to the threshold of living rooms during the festival season. Let’s examine the female festival mantra flaw.

The Female Festival Mantra Flaw
A woman holding a ‘diya’ on the occasion of Diwali. (Image Source: Oprah Daily)


“Wake up at wee hours (applicable only if you get time to nap),

Keeping up with arrangements with one hand and cooking elaborate delicacies with another,

Calling out every time her husband sits down with the remote,

Ironing the sea-green satin kurta for her son,

Making the perfect French braid hairdo for her daughter.

She who makes a festival ‘festival’ fails to celebrate it herself.”

While we all cherish the diversity of India by celebrating countless festivals, we forget to acknowledge the hands who make these festivals “festivals” in the form of delicacies, gifts, and whatnot.

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The female festival mantra constricts them to kitchen and hospitality. It doesn’t let them step out and enjoy the festival like the males of a family. I also had my share of enjoyment during the festivals in my childhood days when my mom would prepare all the delicacies and we would gorge on them relentlessly. Just peep back into your childhood days and try figuring out how your mother celebrated festivals. The only picture that you can remember would be her being busy in the kitchen or in helping you get dressed or in decorating the house, all in all, household chores. Well, try thinking hard, that may be on some Dussehra, some Holi, or some Diwali, she must have just dressed well, relaxed, laughed, danced, and ate her favourite delicacy but alas, only a handful of us can think of this!


For working mothers like mine, festival holidays are privileges but they would just spend them preparing for the festivals, i.e., cleaning the house, decorating the house, cooking and serving us with our favourites, and of course attending the guests. Across India, there were even some festivals where the mothers fasted and still prepared amazing meals for the rest of the family. This is something that a majority of us fail to acknowledge, appreciation is a distant dream.

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So, can we say that mothers do not have the right to choose how to celebrate festivals? Is it important for them to be so buried with duties all the time?

Maybe now is the time that we give it some thought. Let each human rightfully enjoy the festivals and celebrations.

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