I like to think of myself as this:
But to some people I am this:
I have been married to my husband for 24 years. Before I married my husband I loved his family and thought we would live in perfect peace, in fact for the first few years everything was great. Two kids, stress, 7 year itch, and a million other things happened and I started to feel constantly judged unworthy by my husband’s family. It was the all to common Mother-In-Law woes. For several years of my marriage, I would have told you she hated me, no matter how much I sacrificed or how much I loved her son and grandkids, I could do nothing right. She always had another piece of information that I needed to know or to try. To be honest some of them sounded down right wacky!!!
I would like to say that I am the hero in this story but I am not, my mother-in-law is. I don’t know what the change for her was but she started doing her own work. She didn’t say anything to me but I could tell there was a difference with how she interacted with me. Things that use to be an issue weren’t. Then one day she hugged me and said you know what for years we were just a couple of porcupines trying to hug and it kinda hurt.
We were just two women who loved the same people, with histories, stories, wounds, and joys trying to learn to love each other. This caused me to take an honest look at what I was bringing into our relationship. I quickly realized I wasn’t going to win any Daughter-In-Law of the year award. I was quick to judge the smallest things she did as a slight to me. I started telling myself the story that she would be happy if I just disappeared. All that wacky advice, I had been offended by, was actually right on point. She is BRILLIANT!!! I have two kids who have never been on antibiotics because of a book she gave me. The really crazy ideas are now all the rage. My Mother-In-Law wasn’t crazy she is just killer smart, she loved us, yes even me, enough to want to share her wisdom with us.
Today, I am so blessed to have had this amazing woman in my life. For not only did she raise the man I have loved my whole life but she is smart, caring, forgiving, and loving. She is one of the women I have on my wall of women I aspire to be like. Do we always agree? I couldn’t tell you. What I can tell you is I view this amazing woman from a place of love and fascination. Our stories are quite similar though our paths and passions are quite different. I also stopped calling her my Mother-In-Law when describing her, there is an instant negative association. My sister Anna, coined the term Sister-In-Love to describe us. So when describing Eric’s mom, I say my Mother-In-Love. Why? Because she is the mother of the man I love and the woman I chose to love and call mom. Love has everything to do with how I view her. And you know what? The next time she offers up some “wacky” advice I am gonna jump. She has a 24 year history of being right. I am one very lucky Daughter-In-Love!
So who are you porcupine hugging?
Are you ready to stop poking and being poked?
Are you ready to own your part in the story and open your heart to the love around you?
Schedule a free 30-minutes session, lets start healing.
On a sidenote: I want to let you know I am aware that porcupines and hedgehogs are different but for the purpose of this story and lack of porcupine pictures I have mixed them together.