One of my friendâs always professed that children are just for rent, meaning you donât have them forever. I didnât really understand this — that is until I found myself sitting alone in an animated childrenâs movie with 3D glasses on.
I had taken my daughter and her friend to a movie and, after I bought tickets and junk food, we walked into the theatre.
âWeâre going to sit by ourselves,â my 9-year-old daughterâs friend announced.
I kind of expected my daughter to say, âOf course weâre not! We have to sit with my mommy, the greatest love of my life, the one who took us here and paid for everything!â
Yah, that didnât happen.
My daughter happily took off with her friend to sit in the very back row of the theater, leaving me standing there, feeling like I was the only one who hadnât been asked for the final dance of “Stairway to Heaven” at an overnight camp.
I suppose I could have said, âNo, weâre all sitting together!â Or, âThat hurts my feelings.â Or, âAre you embarrassed to be sitting with me?â But, of course, I wanted my daughter to have a fun playdate, and fun for a 9-year-old, it seems, is being allowed to sit without your not-so-cool mother. Oh the thrill!
I knew this day would come. I just didnât think it would come so soon. And I didnât really expect my feelings to be so hurt. There was barely anyone in the movie theater so I wasnât worried about my daughter or her friendâs safety. I could easily see them if I just looked back, and I could also HEAR them, because 9-year-old girls like to talk throughout movies.
My friendâs 9-year-old daughter recently told her that my friend had to wait in the car when she picked her up from school. Why? My friend was wearing her glasses that day because she had an eye infection and couldnât wear contacts. Her daughter was mortified to be seen with her. When did this start happening?
Iâm not sure what I found more depressing. The fact that it was the FIRST time my daughter didnât want to be near me, or the fact that I, a middle age woman, was sitting at a five p.m. show of an animated childrenâs movie with 3D glasses on.
I know plenty of people see movies by themselves, but honestly, would I have chosen an animated childrenâs movie â Epic â to go see on my own? I donât think so.
But I got over the fact that my daughter had ditched me without seeming to care about my feelings. Unlike me, she didnât think, âOH MY GOD THIS IS THE FIRST TIME WEâRE NOT SITTING BESIDE EACH OTHER DURING A MOVIE!â Like the first time she managed to learn how to wave “bye-bye,” it was a milestone in her development. Not a good one, but a milestone that, as a parent, I will certainly remember.