This isn’t a spoiler, because we haven’t had the final yet. Neither is it a prediction, because I believe it’s too close to call. It’s simply a nod to who I believe is the real winner of this year’s show, regardless of who actually wins.
On her first appearance, she said, “I think, when you become a mum, you lose your confidence.”
And that is true. So much of our identity is in our job, what we offer society and the world, and this changes for many women when they have a child and go on maternity leave. Of course, a lot of women go back to work before too long, but even then it is often reduced hours, and how much of yourself can you really give if you’ve got a young family to get back to? As I’ve said in previous posts, motherhood can be very lonely. If your family aren’t that close by; if you are the first of your friends to have a baby; if you’ve recently moved to the area; if you feel stuck in the house, all of these things change you and your confidence. That feeling of 100% dependence upon you can be really quite overwhelming,many it’s not really something anyone can understand unless they experience it themselves. It can rob you of your independence; it can rob you of your social life; it can rob you of your confidence.
Enter Jane. She certainly was timid on that first episode. I marvelled at this women on the television set, at how in control she was and yet how she clearly couldn’t see how amazing she is. Throughout the show, I have been enthralled by how she has grown and changed; Jane has become more daring, more feisty, more confident. And that’s why, for me, she is this year’s winner of Masterchef. It doesn’t matter whether she comes first. It wouldn’t even have mattered if she had left the competition at the semi-finals. What matters is that she has found something within herself, something that once was lost. And that has to be a greater victory than the title itself.
For mum’s everywhere, the confident and timid alike, Jane, you are our champion.