This Mother’s Day, Stylewhack explores the relationship between a daughter-in-law and her mother-in-law, breaking the stereotypes of this age old relationship and looking at this bond in a new light and era. Our Executive Editor Pradnya Vernekar, talks about her mother-in-law who has the tag of an ‘in law’ just for namesake but in reality has become her mother!
I can go on and on about my mother and how she has raised two independent, educated, self-decision making women of the 21st century. She is our birth mom and indeed her influence on us and her upbringing is what we are today.
But today, I want to talk about another mother.
I got married 4 years ago and came to a new home. The new home wasn’t unfamiliar to me as I had been here really very often during the courtship days with my now husband. The first impression of my MIL for me was ‘Strict teacher from school who cooks really awesome food’. But as I started jelling in the new environment, my MIL’s that avatar dissolved and out came a soft woman who cares beyond the world for me.
Instead of describing her and her good virtues, I would instead go back to my memory lane and talk about some incidents which have been etched on my mind forever.
First Birthday post Marriage
Post marriage, we shifted to Chennai and were away from our hometown Pune. My first birthday after marriage, my MIL made the customary Bengali payesh which is made on anyone’s birthday at our home. She took the payesh and a cake to my home which is also in Pune and my mom and my MIL celebrated my birthday together along with my sister, father and sister-in-law. I may have been away then, but this small act touched my heart and I still reminisce and treasure this memory.
Praise from the Horse’s Mouth
My in laws were supposed to go to Nagpur for some occasion and they were contemplating of going by train. I had called up my MIL and insisted that they should go by flight and that we would do their tickets. My MIL was overwhelmed by this small gesture of mine. You know what she did? She went to my home and told my parents that they have raised me the best possible way or to tell in her own words, “Apne bahut ache sanskar diye hai apni beti ko”. In a world where the girl’s side has to bow down, the son-in-law’s mother comes to the girl’s home and tells this to her parents. How elated would be those parents?
Taking My Side
While TV soaps are portraying evil MILs who try their level best to make their daughter-in-law’s life hell, my MIL takes my side and not her son’s in most of the cases. While I was learning to drive and was pissed by my husband’s constant nagging while driving, my MIL gave an earful to her son. This is just a small example, she has been by my side for graver reasons making my life easier on multiple occasions.
Imbibing the Strong Independent Woman Culture
My MIL was an English Teacher and has always been on the go. Be it her job, keeping fit (she does regular exercise, at one point did Bhangra exercise and yoga too), cooking or taking care of the kids and home. She oozes with energy and spreads positive vibes wherever she goes. Her dressing sense is flawless and I even took some make up and dressing tips from her. While I was on a dependant visa in the US unable to work, my MIL said “Don’t waste this time idling, do something new, learn new things, invest this time for your personal development.”
And here I am today, not idling at home but instead weaving stories with my words, trying to improve my oratory skills via Toastmasters, experimenting in the kitchen and trying to learn new things as much as possible.
These are just a few facets of this superb human being. On all of Mother’s Day along with my mom, I have celebrated my MIL too. Let us break the age old conceptions and celebrate motherhood like never before.
Happy Mother’s to all Moms and MILs! 🙂