Friday, April 19, 2013

P: Parenting, by my sweet daughter (in-law) Nikki

The letter P by my sweet daughter (in-law) Nikki.

I fell in love with my husband at eleven.
Okay, that may be hyperbole. The inherent sacrifice, complexities, and dynamics of love are not easily understood at eleven.
But I thought he was beautiful. In mind, body, and spirit. Just beautiful.
And his family was beautiful. He loved his dad. He talked endlessly about uncles, cousins, brothers.
And he really loved his mom.
Now I’m his wife. Now I’m the mother of his child. And now, for the first time, I’m starting to understand just how much of this joy in my life that I owe to his mom.
My husband’s mom taught him forgiveness; I know this because he forgives me—instantly and without question—when I mess up. When I speak a little too harshly, lose my temper a little over dishes left in the sink. When I shuffle up to him sheepishly, reach my arms out, and whisper, “I’m sorry, honey.”
My husband’s mom taught him selflessness; I know this because he bends over backwards for me, for my son. He works tirelessly, endlessly. For his little family.
My husband’s mom taught him chivalry; I know this because he is one of the most romantic men I know.
My husband’s mom taught him the value of kindness, leadership, silliness, and intelligence.
Best of all, my husband’s mom fostered in him a love for the Lord.
How do you sufficiently thank your mother-in-law for loving her son so well? It is because of her that he loves me so well. I watch him kiss my son without reserve, and I imagine him as a blonde-haired, blue-eyed baby, smothered in kisses from his mommy. I listen to him sing to us when we’re sick, and I picture him as feverish, droopy-eyed toddler, snuggled in bed next to his mommy, comforted as she hums him lullabies. This beautiful childhood shaped his beautiful man. This amazing mother raised the man I’ve fallen in love with.
P is for parenting.
I’m so grateful for my incredible mother-in-law.
I adored her the day I met her.
I admired her as I grew to know her.
I loved her as I grew to love her son.
Sweet Mama M,
Thank you for parenting my husband so well. I watch him parent my Liam, and I wonder how I am so blessed. I marvel over the idea that they’re mine. How could that be?! How could one woman be THIS lucky?
Thank you for your patience in teaching him and raising him. It is because of the morals, values, and ideals that you instilled in him that I am so, so incredibly joyous today.
Thank you for being a guide as I struggle to parent my own baby. For the tips, tricks, and suggestions when I am at the end of my rope. For the support and encouragement. For accepting me and loving me as your daughter. I fully believe that there isn’t a better mother-in-law in the world. I can’t imagine my life without our coffee dates and long talks on the porch outside. I can’t imagine Liam’s life without his precious Nonna. I can’t imagine my husband’s life without you and your parenting.
I love you, I love you, I love you.
Thank you for all you’ve done for him.
For Liam.
For me.

photo by Tim Minich


Arlee Bird said...

This is sweet and refreshing. It is as I think things should be.

An A to Z Co-Host
Tossing It Out

Anonymous said...

Words cannot express how beautiful it was., Dena

Wow!!! That was a tear jerker!!! Loved it!! Amy

absolutely amazing,Nicole

Tears in my eyes...Ellen

beautiful! Emy


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