I think I drive my mother in law crazy. She’s from the mid-west and I’m from the south, so when I was being taught to “bless everybody’s hearts”, she was being taught to give her opinions and thoughts. If the neighbor came to me and said, I’ve gained 20lbs and I’m feeling so gross and ugly. I’d say, “Bless your heart, you are beautiful all the time. I’m sorry you’re feeling down. I’m sure if you’ve gained any weight it will come off easily.” She would say, “I’ve noticed you gained a little, have you been snacking more or eating bigger meals and forgetting to exercise? Maybe you should write down what you eat and make sure you’re exercising.” Both ways are fine. I’m trying to sooth emotions and she is trying to take actions. Both things are needed.
I genuinely adore my mother in law. She is one of my best friends and probably my biggest supporter. I am indeed lucky as at any time she could have gone against me in this falling apart of my marriage with her son. Instead she stood by me because she believes her son is wrong, has treated me and our children unfairly and is generally being a dick. She hasn’t turned her back on him but she isn’t, “blessing his heart”. So with our differing ways of being, I was lucky she is who she is.
How I believe I drive her nuts is by always hoping for he best, preparing for the worst, and coming up with numerous senerios to EVERY problem I have. Tons of “what ifs”. She laughs at me often and says you are going off in left field with this one, or why are you wasting your time worrying about this when we have no idea what the future will be. She’s right, of course, but that doesn’t change that I’ll never change when it comes to this. I mentally have to prepare for everything, just in case. It’s a kind of self protection. This doesn’t mean the shit is shocked out of me from time to time. Regardless my “what ifs” drive her crazy yet she still listens and still loves me. She is a gift from God for sure. She has no idea how wonderful she really is and she is not perfect, not even close. None of us are. I love that she’s not perfect. Perfection is boring.
I do believe that when marriages break up, most in-laws take the sides of their own children and begin letting go of their daughter or son-in-laws. As with the ending of such a union, 2 whole families are usually split apart as well. The children are the ones who suffer and get pulled in every direction. I’m going to mom’s side this year or its dad’s turn to have us on Christmas. It’s sad. So far we’ve all been together for holidays but I often worry about when other people come into our lives. I’ve mentioned to her before and said, “He is your son so there isn’t any question, you’ll let go of me.” She always quickly responds, “No, you will still come and you can bring him as well. I’m sure anyone you pick will be someone we will love too.”
I really think I won he mother-in-law lottery. Don’t you?