A Son is a Son

Till he takes him a wife.  A daughter’s a daughter for all of your life. Not absolutely true. A son is still yours, to be shared with another woman, a woman who sometimes forgets his beginning years when you were the sole caretaker. You were privy to his private parts and there were no raised eyebrows, and his early meals were just the way he liked them, and on time. Was  everything perfect? No, of course not  Remember, a mother starts out as someone’s wife and there’s a steep learning curve between the two positions,  but despite our perceived shortcomings, we seem to do well at mastering both. Until we become the daughters in law who will, in the natural order of progressions, wear the hats of wife, mother, and so on, ad infinitum or ad nauseam,  if you prefer.

I’m still on the fence, I confess. Have been a daughter in law and a mother in law and thought I was exemplary in the first role but now I’m not so sure. My husband’s mother went most everywhere with us, meaning my husband and children, especially after she was widowed, and she  hardly was left to be on her own but she’s not around anymore. Exemplary does not seem to be something to strive for these days, be it  kin by blood, or by statute. Busy is the buzz word, and as we who are growing older disgracefully have learned, the shortage of time is not experienced by ourselves, but mostly by those others in our lives who do not have any time on their hands – time for us, that is.

So what I have learned is that we live  in a frenzied world and that a daughter in law is not a daughter and having started out as someone’s daughter we may remain in the daughter category, and mothers in law will not be  mothers after having worn the pseudo stigma of in law status. Therefore, when you get old and need the ministrations of a daughter, such ministrations will not be readily  available without a genuine daughter to offer them.

There is no remedial solution to the absence of  a daughter, at the time of life when most of us no longer have the equipment to be in production. Amen to that, I must say, thinking about additional nocturnal visits to the bathroom and the abdomens which refuse to keep their place.

So, if there is no daughter, sons will sometimes rise to the occasion, but with wives who have supplanted daughters, beginnings will be ground into the dust and a son will be the child who has taken a wife. Where is the son? Where is the mother? Lost to the wife? Not always. After all, a son is still a son.



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