Friday, November 19, 2010

6 Days of Thanksgiving

Today I am thankful for my in-laws.

Let me pause here while my husband re-reads that statement several times.

My husband's family and I have never gotten along.  I have always thought that was because they thought John could do so much better than me.  I'm perfect, I don't know why they would think that.

Our relationship has always been rocky and "on" and "off".  This week they love me, next week they hate me.  They pretty much just put up with me, because they have figured that John isn't getting rid of me.

On one hand I'm sad, because I always wanted to have a good relationship with his family.  One that at least allowed me to not feel uncomfortable at family gatherings because I'm the "evil" one.  After almost 11 years, I'm not sure that I'll ever have the kind of relationship with them that I want. 

And I think that is the point.  They make me realize how important and what an impact my actions and words have on those around me.  They make me realize that how one sentence, one comment said in a moment of anger, can never be forgotten and how important it is to not always judge someone based on a first impression.  They also remind me to have hope in people.  That there is the possiblity of change, and that I'm not perfect.

I will always be grateful for the wonderful man that they raised John to be.  I'm also thankful that he isn't selfish or hurtful in the ways that his family often is, not only to myself, but to their own children.  I'm sad that the type of relationship that I have with his parents, brother's family and sister makes John's life more difficult.  It puts him in an awkward position of often having to choose me over them, and I never wanted things to be that way.  I honestly wish that things could be different, and that they had been different the past 11 years..

It's important to remember the kinds of impressions that these actions make on our family.  Perhaps we all need to sit down and take a good look at the legacy we are leaving behind.

~The problem with children is that you have to put up with their parents. ~Charles DeLint

~Each day of our lives we make deposits in the memory banks of our children.  ~Charles R. Swindoll
~Whenever I held my newborn baby in my arms, I used to think that what I said and did to him could have an influence not only on him but on all whom he met, not only for a day or a month or a year, but for all eternity - a very challenging and exciting thought for a mother. ~Rose Kennedy

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