When a woman sets up house and takes on the roll of “homemaker”, there is a certain amount of pride in being the “Queen of her castle” What happens though when you begin to take on the roll of caregiver to either your parents, inlaws or another family member that contains another female member?
All the royalty talk aside…it is rough to blend the homes and everyone to be happy. I think that is where I have struggled the most is a longing for how things used to be and feeling like my kingdom was not mine anymore. I am really working on trying to discover a new kind of normal and to have reasonable expectations for our future. I want my mother-in-law to feel comfortable, happy and safe with us, but at the same time having to establish boundaries while saving feelings.
In many areas I have been trying to learn to just back off and let the small battles fall to the wayside. If she has made a certain dish a certain way for the past 50 years and wants to correct me (even though mine is perfect) I need to step aside and let her correct me. This gives her a great deal of respect and encourages her to continue to be useful. At the same time, just because she disciplined her children a certain way, she is not allowed to discipline mine or contradict anything I have said.
So we have two Queens in our castle now and I am learning that it doesn’t have to be a full house, nor a loss of a kingdom. I am learning to share and appreciate the wisdom that she has to offer. I am learning to pick my battles because all that really matters is that there is love in the home (no matter how much garlic is supposed to go into pizza sauce)