For the past few days I’ve found myself becoming more and more anxious about this Christmas season. I’m at once excited and terrified about the impending visit from my son and daughter-in-law. Daughter-in-law. That still sounds so strange to my ears. He’s not old enough to be married – in my heart he’s still my Bug. My, quizzical, delightful, insightful little boy. One of my best friends. The one person on this earth in whom I can confide my strangest dreams, oddest fears, and weirdest experiences, and know that I won’t be ridiculed or mocked. I know; he’s 28. He’s not a baby anymore. But he’s still my baby.
Lady N, Bug’s wife (another phrase that still sounds odd), is so much like him that it’s almost as if they were separated at birth. I am truly looking forward to getting to know her better. But it’s hard to get to know people when they live 1000 miles away. I’ve called to speak specifically to her on several occasions, but I always feel like I’m interrupting something much more important than a mere conversation with her mother-in-law. NO – it’s not anything she does or says. I know that it’s ALL ME. I have this irrational fear of becoming “that woman” in her life.
Uncharacteristically, I find myself weighing each word that comes out of my mouth. Then I spend a stupidly agonizing amount of time after hanging up doing a post-mortem on the conversation. Was I too intrusive, bossy, or insensitive? Did my tone convey caring or manipulation? Did I cut off the conversation so quickly that she might think I didn’t want to talk to her? Did I talk too long instilling a dread of future calls? In my old age is she going to look back on this conversation and use it as the basis for my nursing home selection?? Like I said – irrationality to the nth degree!
So now they are coming for a week. They will be here from the 23rd to the 29th. During that time they plan on visiting some of Bug’s friends and seeing some sights. I know I won’t be included in the friend visits. There’s only one I’d like to go on, anyway. But how about the sightseeing? I’d love to go with them, but at the same time I don’t want to get in the way of their fun time together on their vacation. I remember what it was like to be young and in love and want to share new experiences only with my husband. I wouldn’t have wanted my mother, let alone my mother-in-law, trekking along all the time. But now I’M the mother. And I want to spend time with my son. I’m being selfish. Am I allowed??
I found the following while I was flipping through some YouTube videos as I sat here pondering these thoughts this morning. I’ve always loved Amy Grant. I was a fan of hers when we were both kids – me in my normal teen world, her in her phenomenal entrée into music stardom. Her song, My Grownup Christmas Wish, has always been a favorite. But I never heard it like I saw it today.
Grab a cup of coffee or your favorite form of cold caffeine and a box of tissues and settle in for the next 5 minutes. I promise it will not be wasted time. Now hit play. Go ahead. I’ll wait for you.
Kassandra’s Christmas Wish
Have you dried your eyes yet? It took me a while.
This was a major and much needed reality check for me. Suddenly my concerns about a visit from a son who loves me and the woman who loves him seem so glaringly insignificant and I am ready to get back to the business of making my home ready to welcome them.
I close wishing us all the Peace of relief from irrational fears and the Blessing of a family who loves us -- warts and all.