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Wednesday, February 27, 2008

In-Laws

My parents-in-law arrived from Manila this week. As is Filipino tradition, parents usually stay with their daughters, which in this case means my in-laws would be staying with my sisters-in-law (two live in Carson while the other lives in Cerritos). But this week, because of other commitments, my in-laws will be staying with us. My friends have been teasing me about having my in-laws living with us. They've been sharing their own mother vs. daughter-in-law horror stories. But I really don't have any worries or concerns. I have a great relationship with my MIL and FIL. They are both very easy going and low maintenance folks. I've never heard them say anything negative towards anyone in the family, are easy to be around, and are ready to roll up their sleeves and pitch in with housework. It's a bonus that my MIL likes doing housework and that my FIL is a great cook.

I guess I'm lucky that way. While Jojo and I certainly had our differences when we got married. One thing we shared is we both came from large and very close-knit families. Seeing Jojo's family interact with one another was actually one of the main reasons why I knew he and I would get along so well (and I was right!). He and his family have a very open relationship and they genuinely like hanging out with each other. It's very rare to find a family that enjoys each others' company (when I was growing up mine was certainly the exception). But Jojo's family may even be more "extreme" than mine. They are together ALL the time (take vacations together, watch each others' kids, hang out in each others' homes, go to the mall/watch movies/eat out, play volleyball/tennis/basketball together). And the one thing that amazes me is they celebrate just about everything with a family gathering - not just the big holidays like Thanksgiving, Xmas, New Year's and birthdays. We celebrate events like 4th of July, Halloween, Valentines Day, Easter, Mother's Day and Father's Day - even Labor and Memorial Day. We celebrate weddings and anniversaries, getting new jobs and promotions, getting our work visas and green cards, housewarmings, buying new cars, despedidas, graduations, good grades, first communions and confirmations, and every other major and minor event you can think of. Between Jojo, his parents, three sisters and three brothers (plus their spouses and kids), that's a LOT of get-togethers!

I am grateful I married into such a large and warm family. Being away from home (and away from my own family) has definitely been made much easier with them around. I've really come to count on my siblings-in-law as people I can rely on. It helps that my sisters-in-law (all 5 of them) are around my age and so it's easy to become not only in-laws but girlfriends as well. Also, even if Jojo and I don't have any kids of our own yet, having 6 nieces, 5 nephews (and another baby on the way) has really honed our parenting skills. And of course, I know that Jojo and I are who we are today because we came from families like ours. We both believe that family is the top priority, value our marriage, share a love for kids, respect our parents, and are committed to being there for one another.

2 comments:

jol said...

I admire the family of your husband. They truly are not an "ordinary" group but a very special bunch of people. You certainly are most fortunate!

Anonymous said...

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