****
Over a span of nine months, two of our sons got
married. Along with the celebration and excitement, this was
also a time for me to be mindful and consider what kind of
mother-in-law I want to be. For about half of my mothering
life, I was mom to only boys. Three sons made for a lively and
boisterous life. I vaguely remember the first time I heard the
following ditty: a son is a son until he takes a wife; a daughter
is a daughter all of her life. I did not much like the sentiment,
but I realized that within American culture, it sometimes feels
this way. As we approached the first wedding, I wrote these
words as a message to all who may enter our family:
Dear future daughter-in-law,
I have been blessed with a gracious and non-interfering mother-
in-law. Though I know she has deep convictions and opinions,
she has only given advice when asked. I am grateful that she is a
person whose perspective I respect and is approachable when I
want to hear from her. My goal and desire is to pass on to you
this gift that she gave to me.
From the moment his conception was made known to me, I
dedicated this son to God. It has been a delight and joy to watch
him grow up and become a man. Part of that process has at times
been painful, but it is deeply satisfying to see him becoming the
man that he was meant to be. It gives me great pleasure to know
that he has chosen to partner with you in this journey of life.
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