Lets be real. No man really wants to live with their mother-in-law. Nonetheless, my husband Rod has shared our home with my elderly and disabled mother since we said our I dos.
During these eight years we’ve bickered about a lot of things. Chores, spending and whether I’m sometimes too lenient with our son. However, our arguments have never been about whether mom should live with us.
Maybe it has never been a issue with him because mom was living with me when we met. In fact, she was recovering from a serious fall and had just returned home from a nursing home stay when we had our first official date. Rod was gracious enough to interrupt the evening twice so I could go home and check on her. When he proposed, Rod recognized that I had committed to taking care of my mother and never asked if she would live somewhere else, even though most of my friends and family did.
It’s not like Rod thought my mother would be able to provide some free house keeping or childcare. On the contrary her medical issues have meant extra work for him. He has prepared her medicines, meals, taken her to doctor appointments, cleaned up after her, and overseen her care when I’ve traveled on business.
When we are home, my mother usually is too. That often means he has to sacrifice time and privacy with me and allow home health aide workers in our home to help take care of her. Yet Rod has never complained or made my mom feel unwelcome.
I’m not just lucky to have Rod as my husband, I’m blessed. So on this day, our anniversary, I want to say to him thank you for being my anchor. I love you and I’m proud of the example you set for our son and other spouses and partners who take care of the people who have taken on the responsibility of being an elder care giver.