Now why in the world would I leave 70 degree North Carolina for cold and rainy Philly? There are a few reasons:
1) I don't tan. Never have, never will. This makes beach days kind of a problem (and a little painful).
2) Beach towns and plane tickets are pricey.
3) The real reason, EJ is from Philadelphia and we were visiting his family for the week.
To clarify, this isn't the first time I've met his mom, sisters, and grandparents. We visited twice in the first year we were dating, but over the holidays we realized that I hadn't seen his family since his graduation in 2013, so I decided two years was too long. Voila. Spring Break in Pennsylvania.
Even though this wasn't the first time, it was the first time in a whiillleee and our relationship has certainly gotten more serious since my last visit, so in many ways I had all of those same jitters again. How do I act? What do I say?
Will she approve of me? What if she hates me???
Side note: I don't think she hates me.
Any time I meet a boy's parents, I like to treat it as a casual interview. Sure there is no need to show up in a blazer and heels, but you also don't want to be rocking your cutoff shorts and a crop top either. Remember that his parents are probably older and are much more likely to respect you if you show them that you deserve their respect. And in this case, cardigans = respect.
Arriving (and Staying)
EJ and I drove up and got in late Wednesday night. Hugs were exchanged all around and then we spent some time in the kitchen talking and catching up on life before heading to bed. Whenever we are at his mom's house we always sleep in separate rooms, though they are connected by a bathroom. Let me tell you, it is pretty darn tempting just to cuddle up together like normal, but her house, her rules. Does she know that we basically live together already? Yes. Does that matter? Not one bit. Some parents will be more lenient than others, but always respect their wishes, no matter what. You don't want to be that girl who all of his aunts are gossiping about the next day.
While we were there I also tried to be as helpful as possible. I offered to help in the kitchen, made my bed everyday, and kept his mom updated anytime we went somewhere. Though my offers in the kitchen got shot down more often than not (Italian families...what can you say?) I like to think she appreciated the offer, especially when she was working to make sure that I was comfortable.
Usually parents just want to get to know you. You're now the other woman in their son's life and while they've seen pictures on Facebook and maybe have heard about your major, they really don't know much about you - especially if you are living 8 hours away from them. Make sure to carve out time just to sit and chat. No body likes the 20 questions game, but this is the person who you could potentially spend your life with. You probably want his parents to like you. EJ's mom and I bonded over a mutual agreement that he folds towels wrong. He asked me why we were ganging up on him...I simply replied, "You'll thank me for this later."
Finally, Be Yourself
It can be tempting to pretend to be something you're not just to impress his parents, but think about it - if you end up married someday, do you still want to be pretending that you like jazz music and soccer? Personally, that sounds exhausting. Just be yourself. Their son fell in love with the real you, so let them do the same.