My husband and I spent the night at my in-laws, and I chose to sleep in his sister's room

Tracey Folly

*This is a work of nonfiction based on actual events I experienced firsthand; used with permission.

I was married to a man whose only sibling was a sister eight years younger than he was. Since I was two years older than my husband, that meant I was a decade older than my sister-in-law.

Despite a ten-year age gap, I got along with her quite well, especially when she was in her teens, and I was in my early to mid-twenties.

My sister-in-law and I were more like close friends than in-laws. I'd say she was like a sister to me, but I've never had a sister of my own so I don't know what that means.

Many days, I walked along with her on her paper route or sat and watched television with her. We liked many of the same things. I'd say she was mature for her age and I, despite being married, was immature for my age. We met somewhere in the middle.

One night when my husband and I visited his family, he decided he was too tired to make the hour-long drive home, and I can't say I blamed him. We arranged to stay the night.

My mother-in-law kindly offered us a spare room with a queen-sized bed, or ...

"Can I just sleep in J's room instead?" I asked.

My sister-in-law had two twin beds, one on each side of the room. They looked clean, neat, and comfortable.

Most importantly, I'd have a bed to myself without someone snoring, commandeering my side of the mattress, tearing off my blanket, trying to push me off the bed, or any of the other supremely annoying things my husband did while I slept.

Although my mother-in-law seemed a bit surprised that I'd choose to sleep on a twin bed in her daughter's room, she had no problem with it. My sister-in-law was delighted that we could have a sleepover, and so we did.

She and I talked from across the room in our own tidy beds until we fell asleep. I'm sure one of us fell asleep mid-sentence. It was probably the best night's sleep I'd had in years.

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