Family Movie Night
by Karyn Bowman
The past month and a half has been a blur to me.
Since my father’s death, I have had days in which I felt pretty normal. Then there were days when I was pretty sure I was going to start crying while doing the shopping or run to the post office. What could set me off? Pretty much anything, such as “how are you?” or “want fries with that?” or seeing a guy with big arms wearing a cut-off flannel shirt.
My first day back to work saw me shaking and I thought about running out of the library. But I was there and I would have to do this sooner or later. I would have to get back to normal – whatever that it.
Having young kids still at home helps in a strange way. They have activities and routines that need attention. I had to make sure Sam was signed up for baseball, Sara still has a gazzillion activities, and David’s band just performed in a Battle of the Bands in Watseka. So while life is not the same as it was before December 30th, it is not all that different except for one essential.
The thing is, I know I am not alone. My aunt who died four years ago is still mourned by my cousins. Another cousin’s husband just lost his mother. Friends on facebook are posting about lost parents or uncles or aunts. I have simply joined a group that I thought I was not joining for another ten years. But that group understands what I am going through, they know the shaky smile and sudden memories that hit out of the blue.
Lately, I have been wanting to watch all of my old favorites that are sappy and make me cry. Sleepless in Seattle, An Affair to Remember, You’ve Got Mail. Somewhere along the line I saw a trailer for I Don’t Know How She Does It starring Sarah Jessica Parker, Greg Kinnear, and Pierce Bronson. I had to get it!
The story is about a working woman who also has a family. She is a high powered financial executive working with Pierce Bronsan to create a new type of investment tool. Meanwhile her husband is starting a new project for his architectural company. Then there are the kids with birthday parties and bake sales.
Yes, she has a nanny but that person is unreliable. What the character is trying for, more than anything, is to have it all. The great (well-paying) job, the wonderful husband, a loving family. She wants to be a great mom who makes terrific strides at work.
I understand, I really do. I understand why a woman returning from a business trip takes a rolling pin to a perfect store-bought pie to make it look home-made. I understand the need for a shower, trying to make things great for the birthday party, and keeping the husband happy. I understand backbiting co-workers, the in-group at the pricey private school looking down at their noses at the working moms, and family members who do not always get it.
There was a lot to like about this movie, Hello Pierce Bronson. But I also liked how various characters broke the fourth wall as if this was some sort of documentary. They expressed their opinions on what Kate was doing from their vantage point and it worked for me. Keep in mind, this is a movie to share with girlfriends and not the kids. They do not care about our struggles but our girlfriends do!
Sadly, I fell asleep while watching the movie and did not get to see the end. I had spent the day being a busy mom and when the time came for me for some ‘me’ time, well, I passed out. How any of us do it all and stay sane most of the time is beyond me.
Until next week, see you in the rental aisle.