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May 9, 2008 / Maleesha Kovnesky

Why It’s Mother’s Day, and not Mother-In-Law’s Day (Part III)


I’m sure I already mentioned that MILfH is the first to bed and the last one to get up.  Sometimes she sneaks out the door and goes somewhere.  The other day she was complaining about how she is running out of money.  Right after that, she said:

“Have you ever been to that Indian store?”

“What Indian store?”

“The little touristy place downtown?”

“No,” I said.  Mostly because I’ve been too busy, I’m not a tourist, and this is a new town for me. 

“Well I guess the Indians in Montana aren’t as creative as the ones in the Southwest,” she said. 


“The store sells mostly Navajo stuff.  So I guess the Indians in Montana just aren’t as artsy.  But I did find a really nice necklace made by a Blackfoot woman.”

“Huh,” I said.  This was quickly becoming my response to everything.  “Huh.” 

Now I don’t know much about the artsy-ness of the various Native Americans in the country, but I’m pretty sure that was some kind of insult.  Hopefully she won’t talk that way out in town, because there are lots of “Indians” still roaming around town.  And if one of them decided to pull out an original handcrafted antler-handled hatchet and used it to split her skull, I think they’d get all time suspended by a Montana jury. 

I hear she is running out of money due to an insatiable craving for souvenirs.

But the weirdest, most insecure show of behavior so far has to be regarding the coffee.   

I made a pot of coffee on our first morning in the new house in Bozeman.  I made the full pot, 12 cups of Starbucks Breakfast Blend.  I made 12 cups so everyone could have some.  I started to clean the kitchen and put things away.  I saw a glass container of coffee grounds on the counter (not mine) so I moved it to the area near the coffee pot.  MILfH saw this and said, “Oh, is my coffee in your way?” 

“No,” I said.  “Is that yours?  You can keep it on the counter.  I don’t mind.”

She stood up and raced to the coffee.  “No, I don’t want it to get in your way.” She had Macy in one arm.  She scooped up the coffee in the other arm (it’s a pretty large container).  I thought maybe she was going to take it up to her room.  No.  Instead she went back to the living room, rocking the baby in one arm and rocking the coffee in the other.  She stood there, holding the baby and the coffee for several minutes. 

Are you going to hold that all day?  I wondered this.  “I don’t mind if you keep it in the kitchen,” I said.  “I won’t take it.”

“Oh, well, if you don’t mind,” she said.  “I’ll just keep it on the counter.”

FINE.  Sheesh. 

The next day I made coffee again.  She finally woke up after her hours of restful sleep and pulled out her own coffee pot.  Apparently this was how it was going to be…two coffee pots making coffee simultaneously.   Whatever.

The next day she was amazingly awake early.  She already had her coffee going.  And she offered me a mug! “You can try my coffee if you want,” she said.  I thanked her and took half a cup.  It was really good!  It must be that Millstone French Roast, who knows. 

There was a little left in the pot.  “Do you mind if I finish off the pot?”  I asked.  “I’ll make some more.”

She leapt off the couch and headed for the pot. “No, I need more,” she said.  She emptied the pot into her own cup.  “I can make more,” she said.  “Where’s your coffee?” 

Okay, I guess we can make more as long as it’s my stash of coffee.  Fine.  Her coffee was good, and I would have really liked more of it, but whatever.  She grabbed my bag off coffee and added some to the already-used grounds of hers. 

Fine.  I swear I won’t touch your flippin’ coffee. 

I also am barred from her Vermont effing cheese, her yogurt, her juice, and anything else that she brings home.  Which I don’t mind in the least.  What I DO mind is that she happily helps herself to everything that I bring home…she was the first to tear into a new box of crackers I bought for Wasband, into the juice boxes that I provide for AJ (I hate it when other people drink those darn expensive juice boxes…they are for PRESCHOOL USE ONLY), the fruit, the snacks.  And when I make dinner, she is always the first to eat…even before my children, who I always make sure are the first to eat.  She even finished off the pan of scrambled eggs I made the other morning for breakfast before my husband had ANY.  The rudeness and general self-centeredness astounds me in this grown woman. 

A couple of days ago she asked me “Do you think I’ll ever find someone?”  (Uh…she is MARRIED.) 

“You found Greg, didn’t you?”

“Yeah, but Greg is stuck in this cycle of abuse.”  I swear, if I hear cycle of abuse one more time…

I yawned.  “I’m surprised you would want to find anyone, after your experiences.”

“Well, it would be nice to find someone nice.”

“The key is to not need anyone,” I said with my 30-year old wisdom of the ages.  “Then you won’t need to depend on anyone, and maybe you won’t take the first person who comes along.”

She nodded.  “Well, I was fine before I met Greg,” she said.  “I was happy in my house with my dog.  Now I’m in debt, have no savings, and I don’t know what I am going to do.”

I didn’t point out the obvious, like well if you were happy, why did you marry that guy, because pointing out the obvious never gets anyone anywhere.  I just shrugged. 

“Huh,” I said. 

That fancy cheese is still in my refrigerator, unopened.  Yet the package of feta that I purchased for myself has been opened and used by MILfH. 

Last night for dinner, she tore into the package…midway through opening, she stopped…and asked me, “Is it okay if I open this?”



Leave a Comment
  1. Allison / May 14 2008 1:55 pm


    She makes Mommy Dearest actually seem dear.

  2. elementaryteacher / May 11 2008 2:19 pm


    Dedicated Elementary Teacher Overseas (in the Middle East)

  3. Ian Thomas Healy / May 9 2008 4:30 pm


    I’ll rub her out for FREE. Right now. Call me. LOL


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