Hello Dr. Laura,
My mother-in-law had just gone through a divorce when we married, yet she never clung to my first-born hubby to help her through. She was a strong woman who went through many trials in her life including putting up with an abusive husband. In spite of all of that she became a professor who was top in her field at her school. She cared deeply for the single mom who was either uneducated or unable to make ends meet. She was a wonderful grandma, mentor and mother in law. She never 'butted in' but just smiled. She only gave advice when asked, but then it was an avalanche.
We both lamented over aging parents: her parents had kids young, mine had kids late.
She died almost 2 years ago in a head-on car accident by a kid who had no business driving. She was headed to see her son get a very prestigious promotion as a Marine - a proud moment for the family and especially her as Mom. She had just retired at 70 from her teaching and was ready to launch into life with gusto. Her big and little grandchildren will miss her lust for learning and life. And all of us kids - daughters-in-law included - miss her terribly. Here's to my beloved mother-in-law! God rest her soul.