Prasad and I enjoy going to the movies. Escaping into someone else’s life, while reading a book or watching a movie, is an adventure for me. Plus, watching how the camera is zoomed in on a certain detail or zoomed out to show the big picture is a treat to the photographer in me.
In the early years of our marriage we used to watch a movie almost every Saturday. I don’t recollect any that bored me, except, maybe, the Transformers; I slept through that one! Since nobody checked our bags at the theater, we would sneak in some popcorn and a soda bought at the supermarket, as their prices inside were exorbitant.
FUN for less than 20 bucks, which allowed us to frequent the theaters as often as possible!
And then Medha happened. We stopped going to the theater. A few friends, parents themselves, suggested we take the baby to the last show after she has fallen asleep. We never tried that, because Medha is a light sleeper and we worried that she might start bawling at the eruption of the slightest sound. Also, we were so exhausted all the time taking care of her, that we didn’t have the energy to spare on what seemed like an enormous task (making sure we carry all the essentials and soothing her before she goes berserk).
To satiate our love for the movies, we bought an Optoma HD65 projector and rented DVDs from Redbox. We couldn’t watch the latest movies as we had to wait for their DVDs to be released. It wasn’t so bad. We took as many breaks as we needed and watched the movies on a big screen in the comfort of our own home. We even invited our friends over for dinner and watched Bollywood flicks as we finished the desserts.
Three years later, our movie-situation didn’t get any better with the arrival of little Madhav. We still watched them at home, but we yearned to visit the theater, just the 2 of us. Actually, we yearned to just go some place, only the two of us, if only for a cup of coffee.
When we moved in with my in-laws, we were suddenly blessed with a chance to. But I was reluctant. I’d never left home without the kids. And not for more than a few minutes to go grocery-shopping or to the Bank.
I was apprehensive; I felt guilty; I felt like a bad Mommy for wanting to spend a quiet evening with my husband.
But we just HAD to give the experience a try before writing it off.
At the same time I felt excited, as if we were a couple of teenagers having an outing away from the prying eyes of our families.
Our first movie together after the kids was “Gone Girl”. I don’t know whether it is because of the novelty of the experience or whether the movie was actually well-done, but we thoroughly enjoyed watching it.
The kids hadn’t missed us, like we feared they would. They had spent time playing with my in-laws and shopping with them at the Super-market.
That experience didn’t leave anybody scarred. So we decided to give it another try. And then another.
So far we have watched the “Interstellar” and “PK” and loved them both (altogether 3 in a year! Not bad!). Since time is too precious and it is hard to leave the kids under their grandparents’ care often and we don’t have the heart to lie to them in the first place, we carefully pick the movies (No mindless action for me and no chick-flicks for Prasad!).
More than watching the movie, we have begun enjoying the time for ourselves. It is the one time where we don’t have to focus on the kids ( although we always end up talking about them and sharing their antics, more often than not) and stay on high alert for their safety (as they will be well-cared for by their grandparents). And when we return home, it is as if we’d been apart for months; We’re welcomed with squeals of delight and tight hugs from the kids!
So parents, even working couples, I suggest you find help to look after the kids for a couple of hours every month, so you can watch a movie or eat-out, just the 2 of you. I believe it will do your marriage a lot of good.
(By the way, Madhav enjoying watching the Fish in the aquarium at Medha’s school is my picture of the day for my project Picture365. 🙂 He HAS to pay them a visit everyday!)