September 26, 2012

I’ve heard some real horror stories when it comes to Mother-In-Laws (MILs). I had a friend whose MIL rewrote all her post wedding shower thank you cards because, in her opinion, my friend’s handwriting was too disorganized and the wording in the notes didn’t properly convey the messages of humility and thankfulness. I’ve also heard a story of a MIL that, whenever she visited her daughter and her Son-In-Law, she would never remove her coat as if to say “I’m only here because I have to and I can’t wait to remove myself from you presence.” But, the crème-de-la-crème of all MIL stories goes to a good friend of mine who, for her own safety, shall be called Victoria. Victoria and her husband were on a tropical beach vacation with her in-laws. Being in her thirties and having just given birth to a gorgeous baby boy, who I still think should have been named Michael, Victoria was a bit self-conscious of her post-baby body and decided on a series of modest one-piece bathing suits and some groovy mesh cover ups. Well, she was on the beach one morning with her MIL, when the MIL turns to her and says “Victoria, I don’t know you where those frumpy suits and weird cover ups. Look around. You’re not the fattest one on the beach.”

It’s when I hear horror stories like this that I thank the cosmos for my MIL. Her name is Lani and, second only to Mom, she is by far the grooviest mother on the planet. You might be asking yourself “What makes Lani so groovy?” or “She can’t be cooler than my mom.” So, let me elaborate.

The first time BF and I went to visit Lani and her family for Christmas, I fell horribly ill hours after we landed. I spent the entire week at her house lying in BF’s old top bunk sleeping, throwing up and wishing morphine was an over-the-counter pain killer. The only thing that made me feel better was eating a Wendy’s frosty. Something about the semi-chocolate, semi-plastic taste of the refreshing drink made me feel better, if only for a few minutes. One day, BF was recruited by his grandmother (another super awesome lady), to help set up for the family Christmas party, which meant no Frosties for me. I was in bed, cursing my life when there was a knock on the door. I said “Come In” with the little strength that I had. In walked Lani with a smile on her face and a Frosty in her hand. I instantly started to feel better.

Cut to a few years later and we’re at the wedding of BF’s youngest brother. It was a very religious ceremony with a lot of religious people in a very religious town with a very religious reception at which, I wasn’t at my most comfortable. I could see the gears of everyone at the party trying to figure out why I was included in the family pictures and why BF wasn’t yet married at 30-something. That’s when Lani swooped in and saved the day. With her head held high and exuding the pride only a mother can pull off, she made the rounds to everyone at the reception, introducing me as her Son-In-Law. Not only did I feel more comfortable at the party, but I had a heightened respect for my Lani.

Every time BF and I visit Lani she always makes a batch of his favorite cookies. They are a delicious recipe called Cherry Winks that literally melt in your mouth and leaving craving more, like a crack addict after a good fix. Unfortunately, I don’t get to eat many of them, as BF protects them more ferociously than a mama bear with her newborn cubs. But this last time we visited, that wasn’t a problem. When we walked into her house, I noticed not one box of homemade cookies on the counter, but two. One full of Cherry Winks, and the other full of my favorite cookies.

More than the Frosty or the proud announcement that the wedding, those cookies told me that I was certainly part of the family.

My advice to my MIL:

As rare as it is for me, I have no advice for you Lani. I think you’re pretty awesome just the way you are.

My advice to everyone else:

Like with my Mom, my Homo Honey and my Superhero Boyfriend, everyone reading this should be insanely jealous.


One Response to “My MIL”

  1. Jarred Says:

    My MIL is nice and well-intentioned. But she’s incredibly awkward and we have nothing to talk about. Much like my mother!

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