They usually have a bad rap for being intrusive, overbearing, irritating and controlling.
I have been at so many gatherings where mothers-in-law have been the center of everyone’s jokes.
I am happy to report though that I can never join in to these conversations because I don’t have one single story to tell. Seriously. Not even one.
My mother-in-law is the best.
And I don’t just say that because she reads this site, or because she will be soon spending an undefined amount of time taking care of my children and my household while my husband are away adopting our fourth. (Anyone who takes on my kids and their schedules is amazing.)
But because she really is the best and doesn’t get the credit she deserves.
Why is she the best?
For starters, she raised her son, who is now my husband, to be kind, hardworking, honest, generous, and loving. She poured these qualities into him everyday by being an example. I get to reap the benefits of her sacrificial and unending love and devotion. Her impact years ago is now impacting the hearts of my children and I could not be more grateful.
She is fun. Every year she travels from Brazil to stay with us and my absolute favorite thing is to hear her joyful laugh echoing in the walls of my house. Her fun-loving nature draws people to her.
She is talented with words, an expert in the kitchen, and a beautiful musician. She selflessly shares her gifts with everyone around her.
She loves my children like they are her own. She is never too busy for them. In fact, once a week she spends a great deal of time teaching them to play piano over Skype. Have you ever tried to have a conversation on Skype? Yes? Then you know how annoying and frustrating it can be. Add Wi-Fi that keeps dropping, and a distracted wiggly-excited child into that scenario and times it by three. That is our every Wednesday evening, and she keeps showing up!
She is a servant. I am always having to tell her to sit down when she is in my home. If she isn’t working in the kitchen, she is busy washing my windows. Also, if it weren’t for her, none of my indoor plants would be alive right now.
She is patient, kind, and understanding. If you ever need a compassionate heart to hear you, she is your woman. Over the years I have been encouraged by our conversations. She welcomes you with open arms and a non-judgmental spirit.
I am often thankful for her perspective. While I am in the throws of motherhood, she comes in with a seasoned wisdom. She often sees what I can’t see and gently offers that perspective, but only if I ask for it. I am a better mother because of her example, and hopefully one day I’ll be a rock star mother-in-law, just like her!
Maybe mothers-in-law’s intentions are misunderstood. Maybe they don’t get the praise they deserve. Maybe some of us young moms forget that we have a common thread that binds us to these beautiful older moms. We are walking the same journey, and if we are lucky enough we will know that we are blessed to walk it together.
I want to hear your stories about your amazing mothers-in-law. Why are you thankful for her? What do you love the most about her?