8 days and counting! When I discovered at 46 I was going to be a grandma, it took a split second to get over the feeling of “old” and moved directly into pure joy. Our bouncing baby boy is almost 10-months-old and mommy and daddy are taking their vows; I’ve got 8 days to swallow the “mother in law pill!”

Mother-in-law and grandma? I just received my 30-year class reunion invite! Who is this woman in the mirror? I’ve got a 7-year-old and I have high school classmates still having babies for crying out loud! Isn’t the mother-in-law wrinkled, her hair in a bun, a rolling pin in hand, and screaming about the mistreatment of her little boy?

Stop the bus! (SCREECH!) I’m not taking this trip!

I’m proud to announce I’m going to be a mother-in-law! A new title, a new badge!

Is there a manual for this? Do I have to put my hand on the Bible and declare “I do solemnly swear to be the best mama-in-law I can be. I promise not to be too overbearing. I won’t complain about your cooking. I won’t tell you how to dress my grandchildren, I won’t tell my son mama knows better and I promise I will not throw boots at the back of your head!”

So are there subjects I do need to address? Does the daughter-in-law have in her possession a manual as well? Please turn to page 237 of your daughter-in-law guide. When my grown son is sick and whining, because you know that men are always soooo much sicker than we are. Ummm, Ya! The manual states “He’s all yours now!” He’s spent too much money on his new set of golf clubs because he just had to have them? You know, because he’s hangin’ with the big boys now. Ya, you guessed it! That book says, “He’s all yours now!” He’s left the toilet seat up again and his clothes are right where he left them on the bathroom floor? Sorry honey, he’s all yours now!

Is there any advice I can offer you, maybe both of you? No! I’m not afraid to admit I’ve been down that road twice so I feel like I’m not really qualified to offer relationship tips. Ok, I’m going to think positive and declare that maybe I’m overqualified!

Forget all of that, I’ve changed my mind and I’m going to anyway. Do I have recommendations to my soon to be daughter-in-law and my son? I sure do! Don’t let your partner walk all over you, you’re not a doormat. Don’t forget to have fun. Just because you’re grown-ups now doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy life. Money troubles? There’s always that, no matter who you are. Figure it out together. Independence? You can still have that, in fact, I think it’s important. Don’t smother each other, it’s crucial to still have your own identity and healthy to be able to do your own thing. Lean on each other, be supportive, and always have an open mind.

I’m happy for my son and his little family. I’m proud to announce I will soon have another daughter and she couldn’t be a better fit into our group of crazies if I’d have picked her for my son all by myself. She’s a hard working hippie child that doesn’t mind sharing her opinion, an old soul with an open mind, and a believer in the fair treatment of all. Now that I think about it, describing her is almost like describing my own children.

One last thing! Sweetie, he’s all yours now!

Cynthia Smith Huhman

I am a mother of 5 children, with a difference of 20+ years from the oldest to the youngest. I’m a new grandma to a beautiful baby boy! I have worked in the broadcast business for 9 years; I’m putting myself through college, studying marketing and leadership, and I’m a self-proclaimed big mouth for Tourette syndrome and developmentally disabled. Previously divorced; I now co-parent with my significant other of 12+ years, in 2 separate homes. Unconventional, but with a combined total of 8 kids… his, hers, and little ours it works for us! I live for my coffee & vanilla chai. I love to teach my daughter new crafts & inspiring her creativity. I enjoy my gardening, cooking, wandering around the hills with my camera, and writing. You can also find me at my new blog http://momofmanytoes.weebly.com/ My motto: Pick yourself up and keep on moving!