Learning to be an Imma



I thought that being a mother-in-law would be a simple straight-forward type of thing. “You are not losing a son, you are gaining a daughter..” so goes the old adage. However, in the limbo that is the ‘afterglow’ of wedding and honeymoon, I am left wondering what is expected of me in this new role. When I was first married, I puzzled over how I was to relate to my in-laws. My own mother had always called my father’s parents “mom and dad”, and so I automatically assumed that I would just do the same. (After all, that is what Greg’s parents did with his grandparents too, so it would not seem at all foreign to them!) Perhaps it was just a generational thing after all. But then again, I still see the same thing happening with other families today…the “in-laws” (or ‘out-laws’ depending on the relationship) are addressed as titled parents. Perhaps I am old fashioned, but I kind of like that. I am not really at all comfortable being called by my first name- it feels distant and removed, or like I am just another casual aquaintance. I am not another “Atticus Finch”. I would like to be “imma”. That feels much more like family to me, for what it’s worth.

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