When I was a kid family used to sleep on the living room floor together. We’d gather up all the blankets and pillows in the house and camp out in the living room.
One time we maintained this sleeping arrangement for a couple of weeks. Every night we’d eat dinner and then go watch movies in our makeshift beds. I felt so safe and loved sleeping next to my mom, dad, and older sister. I could just go to sleep the instant I felt like it because I was co-content.
On Friday and Saturday nights we’d pile in the car and drive to Blockbuster video, picking out new movies or renting the old classics. I remember my sister and I always hoping our parents would get home early, so we didn’t get to Blockbuster late and miss out on the new releases of the week.
But then my parents got divorced and that chapter of my life. Instead of watching movies as a family I started camping out in the living room along, my sister becoming too old and my mother becoming too busy with the rotating wheel of new men in her life. It was never the same for me. Random thought but I think this is why the Blink 182 song “Stay Together For The Kids” resonated with so many from my generation.
I am now a grown man who has been married for six years. And occasionally my wife and I drag our queen size mattress out of the bedroom and re-enact my childhood routine. We call it “create-a-bed” because we feel like two hippies. I still enjoy sleeping in the living room all these years later, even though it were just the two of us. It’s like staying in a hotel room, but you get all the comfort of home.
But I was always scared that we’d never get to share this experience with a child of our own. It would then become an unearthed relic, banished to the early years of my life, the years when things were more hopeful.
But my wife and I have come into some good fortune in the past months.
After years of not being able to conceive a child, we are now expecting a little girl. We are going to call her Leela.
And I’m just so excited for out burgeoning little family to one day camp out in the living room and watch movies together, streaming them on Netflix instead of standing in line at Blockbuster. And I hope that Leela will feel that love and warmth I felt all those years ago. And I hope I’ll be able to feel them again, too.
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