Almost 9 years ago, I married my soul mate. He is an amazing guy, smart, funny, cute, kind, generous…I also married his family, slightly dysfunctional, nuts, whacked…
I really do love them and am thankful that they are part of my life, I am also thankful they live 2000 kms away. Visiting is limited to twice a year, and 2 weeks at a time at the most.
I suppose it is because Shaughn and i were raised very differently. His mother is a free spirit, like REALLY free. Classic artist-hippy-celtic loving- gardening-dreamer who has one foot on the earth and another…well, someplace else. I was raised in a very strict home. I had rules and God help me if I didn’t follow them. My mother was very Catholic, and expected her children to behave, and to be polite. Shaughn, not so much. He had no rules, and was essentially raised much in the same free-spirited way that his mother still lives.
I am making my MIL out to be a weirdo, she’s not really; we are just very different. We have different ideas on how to raise my daughter, and what is important in life. Thankfully, Shaughn and I are on the same page when it comes to most things, and most importantly on how to raise Paisley.
So, those limited visits, well, now I am in the middle of one. She usually flies in for Christmas, but this year decided to come for the kids 4th birthday. She arrived on Thursday will the world a-swirling around her, she’s akin to a tornado. Within an hour of her arrival she had her bags unpacked, stuff everywhere, gifts out for Paisley, cookies for Shaughn…and I was still working, with 3 daycare kids running around. Arrrrrrgggggghhhhhhh!
My in-laws are probably some of the kindest, and generous people anyone can ever meet, they have helped us more than once when we were in a bind. Never any questions asked, never any expectation for repayment. They always pay for our flights out to see them, and just shower Paisley with love. One thing I absolutely appreciate is that they are not grandparents who buy things constantly for Paisley; instead her visits with them are often spent doing things, and spending time making memories. This past summer the MIL had Paisley making fused glass magnets, working in the garden, and colouring and painting pictures with her. Every morning Grandad and Paisley would bake, or make jello, often I would find the two of them lost in a book together on the couch. I love it. These times, these memories are worth far more than a doll or clothes.
I will always have in-law issues, I don’t know anyone who doesn’t, BUT, in the grand scheme of things, I could have done far worse than marrying into Shaughn’s crazy family. I am thankful to have them as part of my life.