Having an only child is the maternal equivalent of putting all your eggs in one basket, so to speak. Additional children give you the chance for a do-over or two; with only one, that’s exactly how many chances you get to get the whole parenting thing right. I look back on the trail I embarked upon 32 years ago and I see it littered with the weeds and stones of my mistakes and missteps. Occasionally I’ll spot a bit of something shiny. I hope it’s a marker for a good decision made, or the right thing said at the right time.
Yet, in spite of my occasional impatience and bursts of short-temper, the young man standing at the edge of this path — my son — is the brightest thing shining there. He’s a terrific person with a great good heart, and he’s at a crossroads. He’s getting married soon to a beautiful young woman with a great good heart of her own. I have just one chance to get this whole mother-of-the-groom thing right. Over the years, through trial-and-error, I’ve learned a thing or 11 about what it takes to make a relationship work. I’d like to share these bits of wisdom with him now — 12 things he should know before his wedding day.
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