On not ever being somebody’s MIL

I have 2 brothers and the vast majority of my parents’ friends when we were growing up, also had mostly boys. I enjoy watching sport (cricket especially, tennis quite a lot and then rugby,formula 1, soccer,etc.) and I don’t think I’m a particular girly-girl. I always pictured myself as the mother of boys. I mentioned this to a close friend and she then said something to me which I’d never considered and which changed my perspective forever. Perhaps my opinion would have been different if I had a better relationship with my MIL. We don’t fight but we are by no means close. This is very distressing for my husband but I can’t change how I feel and I can’t see her changing either.

Getting back to what my friend said. Her sister has 2 boys and she was complaining to my friend, “I’ll only ever get to be a MIL one day.” This is so true. I am unbelievably close to my mom and it’s a lot of the reason I wanted to move back to PE and it’s been everything and more than I’d imagined it to be. Hopefully I’ll get to share my daughters’ adult lives with them in a very close (physically and emotionally) way, as my mom is doing with me now. The bond beteween grandparents and their grandchildren is so magical and I’m so glad that my girls are able to experience something which I never did (my grandparents were in Cape Town and Durban while we lived in PE).

It does also make me think a lot about family and our relationships. There is not much of an age gap between myself and my 2 brothers and we fought/argued a lot while we were growing up but we are close now. My older brother lives in the USA and I must admit that the time difference makes speaking often quite tricky (more so than when they were in Aus, not sure why but that’s what I’m finding). Chris is not a fighter/arguer, which drives me insane. He will rather back away from a confrontation and usually I’ll find out later what he really feels. He rarely gets cross, nobody is ever to blame for anything, he’s not moody (although he has  just told me about a huge fight he’s just had with one of the Anaesthetists at work). He never fought/argued much with his sisters. He is 5 years younger than his youngest sister, which could have a lot to do with things, but I think he has a pretty superficial relationship with his sisters. They are vaguely aware of what goes on in our lives but not really and I don’t have much of a relationship with them either, they don’t live in PE which probably doesn’t help but I don’t live near my brothers either.

Can it not be said then, that while it can’t be very pleasant to live with and listen to your children arguing, does it not lead to better realtionships later on. I had a fiery relationship with my mom and now we are very close. I can say anything I like to her, and vice versa and no one’s feelings are hurt and no one takes offense. The same cannot be said for Chris’s family.

The thing that bothers me is how do I raise my girls so that one day we will be close. I know I’m not an easy person to live with. I am moody and like my own way, want things done immediatly, a perfectionist etc.,etc. My mom isn’t like that at all. I know in my heart of hearts what the answer is, I need to make sure my relationship with God and with Chris is right. I need to spend more time seeking out God’s direction in and for my life. He is the only one able to give me more patience when it comes to dealing with my family. It’s always easier said than done. The thing I like about blogging is that even if no one reads it, it is a good way of keeping oneself accountable and by writing down one’s thoughts, fears, worries, joys,blessings,etc. it does make them seem that little bit more real.

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