Monday, November 19, 2012

A Meeting of In-Laws.

Here we are, approaching the holiday yet again; it seems like this year went by so fast. My mother-in-law is flying up to join my husband and I for Thanksgiving, which I think will be fun, despite the obvious cliches about having in-laws for the holiday! The good thing is that she's staying at a hotel, since we live in a Hobbit house. She'll be coming in on Wednesday, and Paul and I have been cleaning, and de-cluttering, and, today, grocery shopping in preparation. It's only the second time she's been to visit us since we've been together, the first time only a few months after we had moved in together. So the possibility that has been occupying my mind on and off for the last few weeks has never come up before. Should I bring her over to meet my Dad; introduce these two people who are now related by marriage?

It's a quandary. The first time I was married, my Father was still lucid and functional; he knew my husband and my husband's family and things were more or less the way they should be between in-laws. Now, though, I have, in essence, no parents, so the meeting of in-laws was never an issue when Paul and I got engaged. Since she's going to be here now, however, and I'd like to pay a visit to Dad over the weekend, the possibility exists that the in-laws could meet! More or less.

I'm trying to decide whether to even ask her, because I know she's feeling a little sad right now about some other friends she has that are suffering from dementia, and I don't want her to feel that I would be hurt if she declined the chance to meet Dad; and I really wouldn't! The problem is that, even when you reassure people you don't mind either way, they always think you do, and I don't want her to agree to go when she really would rather not. So there is my quandary. Whether or not to even ask her if she'd like to meet Dad, and how I would feel about it if we all trooped over there and sat around Dad while he snoozed, pretending this was normal. Which it's not.

I have to admit that there's a little part of me that would like to introduce her to my Dad, if only so that she could meet and see the person I talk so much about, whose illness has shaped my life in so many interesting ways. I can't deny that there is a part of me that would like to pretend its a meeting of in-laws, just like every other meeting of in-laws, even though its not. There's a big part of me that wishes sometimes that our lives were just like other people's, without the questions and challenges that dementia brings.

I guess I'll have to decide pretty soon what I'm going to do. Regardless, I think we'll have a good Thanksgiving, and I hope you all do as well, even if you have quandaries that are on your mind.

1 comment:

  1. Nice story Joy. I think you really should introduce your mother-in-law to your dad. :)