Mother-in-Law Hood

While I’m out of town, my Writing group friends are filling in for me with their “take” on Motherhood.  Today, Marci Hatfield will tell about her “new” experience of being a Mother-in-law.  I haven’t experienced this yet, but it’s an interesting perspective for Mother’s Day.  Take it away, Marci.

“I have never really thought about this until my son became engaged.   What is being a Mother-in-Law?  Everyone who ever gets married is affected by this!  But what is it really?  I mean:  Is it truly like the Evil Stepmother on Cinderella?

I just want to be known as a person, but am now “the Mother-in-law.”  Here is a bit of what I have experienced with the announcement of my son’s engagement:

“I heard that your son was engaged,  ooh I wouldn’t want her to be my mother-in-law!”  This was told to me.   Who does that?  Then: “So you’re going to be a mother-in-law, how do you feel about that?”  Seriously?

Frankly, I was simply thrilled that this beautiful daughter of God who loves and cherishes my son for who he is came into his life!  I am excited to have this woman become part of our lives; I wasn’t thinking of, “Oh I get to be the mother-in-law now.”

I reflected on my own experience of having a mother-in-law.  I love my mother-in-law, but it wasn’t a love at first sight kind of thing.  Over  the years I have learned to love and respect her for who she is–not for what she should be to me.   She is an amazing cook, and very talented in sewing and quilting.  She loves to teach children, and reading is very important to her.  I have always respected her as the mother of my husband, friend, and confidant.  I feel indebted to her for raising such a righteous man just for me and our children.

So now I get to step back…watch, observe and wait.  I have no doubt that this woman who will be a part of my son’s life will be a fabulous wife and future mother.  I have discovered similarities between her and me (I’m sure she would never want to hear this).  For instance:  When we say “Hello!”  we say it the same enthusiastic way.  I see her in different scenarios and she handles things or situations much like I would.   That’s weird.

You know how it has been said, that your children marry people like their parents?   Hopefully, she is better than me.

I now have to respect a whole new part of Motherhood that took me 23 years to realize.  Mother-in-Law Hood, though it becomes instantaneous, is a lifelong journey.

Another daughter of God raised their child, who will someday marry your child.  They loved them, nurtured them, felt sorrow and joys with them and prayed that someday someone wonderful and perfect would be a companion for their child.

As a Mother-In-Law, it is now up to me to love and cherish these children of God who will become a part of our eternal family.  I will love and respect their mothers, who like me, want only the best for their children.

Yesterday, I accepted my Mother-in-Law as the mother of my husband.   Today, I revere her as a Mother, Grandmother, and Great- Grandmother.  Tomorrow I will cherish the sweet gift of her very being and the quiet lessons learned as she touched our lives for good, forever.

Mother-In-Law-Hood…I think I will embrace it!

Thank you, Marci, for your thought provoking post.  And to my own Mother-in-law, who is really just my second mother, thanks for all the love you’ve given me since you first met me as a teenie bopper.  You loved me even though your son ditched high school to go play golf with me; and you loved me even though I dressed atrociously (didn’t we all in the 80’s?).   Happy Mother’s Day!


5 thoughts on “Mother-in-Law Hood

  1. What a wonderful way to express the way how many (probably) of us feel! You really brought together the words and thoughts to speak the truth. Thank you for opening your heart and sharing with us!!

    • Thanks, Diane. My friend, Marci wrote this and really did a good job. I loved reading your thoughts on the subject as well on your site.

  2. What a great perspective on mother-in-law-hood. I really like her point on raising a great son making her a great mother. I’ll have to remember that for myself! And I do believe it to be very true. Gosh, I wish someone had knocked me really hard on the head years ago to make me understand this for the people around me… 😉

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