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My Other Mother

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My Mom-in-law

It’s almost Mother’s day, and this year I want to pay homage to my other Mother. Last year I wrote about my own Mom but this time I want to recognize and thank another very important Mom to me in my life: My Mom-in-law.

It took a long time for me to actually get to know my MIL, as she lives all the way across the country — in diagonal. We’re in Southern California, she lives in NY state closer to Toronto than to NY City. I first met her when my husband and I were just starting to date, in December of 2000. I had been visiting my sister in Montreal, so we were both invited to come meet the family, as we were “Kinda close.” A long train ride later, made even slower by mounds and piles of snow from the great lakes, we finally made it to the little town where my better half was born and raised. Both my sister and I had the warmest welcome from the entire family, starting by my Jan, my MIL. We also got to meet the extended family, and partake on the winter celebrations (not Christmas, as we arrived the day after). After that, I think I didn’t see Jan nor the rest of the family until 2003 for thanksgiving, after we had just gotten engaged. She had visited LA that summer, but I was already in Mexico, so I didn’t get to see her there.

The fact is, I did marry my husband and I really didn’t know his Mom, the reason was that she was so far away in the time before Skype. We’d see each other about once a year, either for Christmas or Thanksgiving, and a few family trips in between (we went all together to Sicily with the Sicilian part of my husband’s family). She first came to stay with us in 2005 when we got our house, but that time was super hectic. What was more and more clear to me as time went by, is that my Mom-in-law and I have a ton of things in common; from the way we like our teas, to a very respectful but passionate way of dealing with hot-button topics.

When I Really Got to Know my MIL Better

I always liked Jan. But I think that what really brought us a lot closer, was the arrival of the Grandchildren. Ever since I was pregnant with Miss I, she started visiting and staying with us as least once a year, apart from family reunions and Christmas celebrations and such. She was with us for a whole month when Miss I was 5 months, to help me care for her while I was going back to work. I feel that that’s when our relationship really flourished. When Miss I was 2, she even came to me to Guadalajara for a month to care for her while I was shooting a movie, then went back to LA to help my husband care for her back home for 2 more months. It really was thanks to her that I could get that movie done, and I’ll be forever grateful because of that. She’s a very kind, incredibly loving woman who keeps a low profile… but she’s definitely full of fire inside. I’ve also discovered that more secret part of her by following her interests and posts on Facebook, of all places, as well as discovering more and more about her story as we get the chance to talk when she’s around. Both my kids adore their Granny Janny, and I’m incredibly fortunate to have gotten such a fantastic Mom-in-Law. So, to her I wish all the happiness and joy in the world, and we look forward to seeing her back in Upstate NY soon!

Do you have another woman to which you love and consider a mother to you?

About Erika

Worked in film and TV for several years before having my two wonderful children. Now I try to bring that creative input into my home to raise my kids. Hope you enjoy following this journey!
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  1. Great you honored your MIL. I bet she felt real special. I would say my step-mom Carole. She has been like a second mother to me and I don’t say that just because she holds the title. My biological mom passed away a couple of years ago and she has stepped in (no pun intended) to be there if I need someone. Especially since I lost my dad (her husband) the same year. So honoring those that can fill the void means a lot.

    • Michelle, I’m so sorry for your loss, but it is wonderful your step-mom was there for you. Thanks so much for sharing your story! And happy Mothers day to her (and you!)

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