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This is about my relationship with my mother-in-law. The thing she has taught me is acceptance. Not only her acceptance of me into her family—that was hard enough with me "taking" her firstborn from her—but her acceptance of people in general. I have watched my mother-in-law—"Mom" as I call her—show unconditional love to everyone she meets. She meets people right where they are and just loves them the way they are, warts and all. If I have ever heard anyone speaking ill of someone in front of her, she is always right there to say something good about the person and why they behave the way they do. Not to enable the behavior, but to love them in spite of the behavior.

I now have four kids of my own, and I've received the tools I need to be accepting of them and their mistakes (we all make them) and let them always know that who they are is not defined by what they know or who they know, but how big their heart is. By her accepting me at a time in my life that I needed so desperately to have a female maternal figure think I was wonderful, she taught me how to give that to my children, my husband and everyone else I meet. That is a most priceless gift, and one I will treasure always. I will honor her for this on Mother's Day. I hope you will too.

Jennifer Humphreys; Sugar Land, Texas


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