Bundoo’s Twelve Days of Christmas: How being terrified of my mother-in-law turned into a Christmas movie tradition
Before I met my mother-in-law, I’d heard horror stories about her.
I heard about how she disliked my husband’s last girlfriend so much that she called her Cincinnati* (the city she was from) and refused to call her Catherine.* I’d heard she judged old girlfriends on the way they dressed, their small talk, their accents (and I have a Southern one!). I’d heard that she warned her son about “how awful it would be if he married her” the last time he brought a girl home. I also heard she was beautiful, smart, and a powerhouse at work.
I’m rarely unsure of myself, but I was terrified. It didn’t help that my then-boyfriend/now-husband was nervous for me and kept warning me not to feel bad if she didn’t warm up/was unkind/ate me for breakfast.
So how did it go when we met? The unthinkable happened. We clicked…And nine years later, I still feel like I dodged a bullet.
Flash forward a few years. A movie called The Family Stone came out. With a Christmas theme and star-studded cast that includes Sarah Jessica Parker, Rachel McAdams, Luke Wilson, and Diane Keaton, it is about a man who brings his girlfriend home to meet his family only to have his mother and sister despise her. The movie is hilarious, and hits home for our family because it’s exactly what I worried would happen when I met my mother-in-law for the first time!
We watch The Family Stone every Christmas now and laugh. It’s funny now to think that I could have been called Mobile (the city where I’m from), she could have made fun of my accent (I’m fixin’ to do that), or rolled her eyes at my small talk (So where are y’all from?).
How did your Christmas traditions start? Share your stories in the comments below.
*Changed to protect the disliked/made fun of/eaten for breakfast.