Letter to My Mother-in-Law

Dear Mother-in-Law,

It was 46 years ago tomorrow that you gave birth to your youngest son. He says you tell the tale that the length of the delivery almost killed you and him both. I’m glad that both you and he survived his birth.

Two years after I married your youngest son, you and I had a conversation. Do you remember it? I do. You told me to “take care of your baby.”

I’ve been doing this for more than half my life.

I’ve shared lots of good times with him and plenty of bad times. We’ve stuck together through many sicknesses and many healthy days.

We’ve celebrated each other’s joys, held each other through our mutual pain.

Mother-in-law, I’ve held him through a lot of pain, both personal and professional.

The things that seem to pain him the most center around his family.

Especially when you don’t share his victories and special moments with him. He was your only child to have graduated from college and you didn’t even send a card.

He graduated from college, with honors, over ten years ago and the pain of your absence from the celebration is still a black mark on an otherwise very happy memory.

I think the thing that hurts him more than anything is that you forgot his birthday last year and again today when he stopped by to visit you.

Mother-in-law, I need your help right now in taking care of your baby. He’s really hurting and as much as I love him, he needs his mom.

Would it be too much to ask for you to call him tomorrow and say, “Happy Birthday, son. I love you.”

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