It is like cutting the umbilical cord for the second time, but then a little less bloody: going to the cinemas for the first time after delivering a baby.
I remember each instance vividly. After the first baby I saw Beast of the Southern Wild with a friend. I wallowed in the magic realism (my friend thought it was a bit too much) while my husband was dealing with a crying baby who refused the bottle. After number two, I went on my own to Begin Again and walked out of the cinema with a big smile on my face, even though I am not a particularly huge Keira Knightley fan. And watching Lady Bird with my sister after the recent third addition took me back to the days before motherhood when my sister and I studied in the States.
I have enjoyed my maternity breaks. It has been good to have time with my baby, getting to know her day in and night out. But each time being in a dark room with only the screen and no interruptions makes me realize that I can be unbound to the baby as well. The film takes me to another world and I stop thinking about feeding and schedules. After only a few hours of being away I return as a freer mom happy to see my family again.
Just as with babies it can feel like there is no other world than the classroom. Students and teachers are bound to schedules and assigned rooms. Last year for my research for the Research Group Change Management we cut that cord and took the students to a dark room and a big screen at the Filmhuis Den Haag. They watched a documentary for 90 minutes straight without interruption in a dark room with a big screen. Students found it strange to be there – this change of scenery without a prior educational assignment– but were focused and quiet to be immersed in the story of Tony Chocolonely.
This coming September, in cooperation with The Lighthouse, MP&C (HHS) and De Orde van Organisatiedeskundigen en Adviseurs (Ooa), Research Group Change Management is organizing the second edition of Corporate Bodies Film Festival, with a big screen and good sound at the Lighthouse. Dry theoretical concepts of organizations come alive on this screen. Students and teachers are invited. So cut the cord of classrooms and schedules and maybe the magic will happen.