It’s interesting to me to see how different the generations are. I love books and have since I learned to read. Perhaps I loved them even before that, since I recall studying picture books during my “nap time” whcn I was a preschooler. Naps, as it turns out, were for my mom back then. We had to stay in our rooms and be quiet for an hour.
Now I have noticed that many of my friends also love books, but my kids rarely read simply for pleasure. I can still recall how, when I first learned to read, I wondered why no one ever showed me how before first grade. I know, that dates me. Our kindergarten teacher taught us a few sight words, but they really weren’t supposed to go very far back then.
But what was it about reading that so attracted me? I think it was this. Whenever I was bored, a book could always take me on an adventure. Sure they all say that, but it really was a form of stress relief for me. I had two older brothers, who liked to tickle me to make me laugh. I guess I was too sober to suit them. The problem was, they tended to take it too far, and I regarded their attention as a form of torture. When this was really getting to me and making me uptight, I could grab a book, get lost in someone else’s issues, and when I emerged hours later, it was like I had had some kind of mental reset. Sure, my brothers would pester me again, but maybe it wasn’t the end of the world after all.
To tell you the truth, I sometimes still use a book like that. I can get all wound up, worrying about this or that. I have learned other coping skills, but sometimes focusing on a book works best to get me to relax. Somehow, stepping away from whatever is the current issue for a while can change my perspective.
I’m not sure why the current generation isn’t into books as much. When we were kids, there were always things going on where they were encouraging us to read. I usually thought they were silly. Read a book and report on it and you will get a reward. For heaven’s sake, reading was its own reward!
Of course, because I loved it so much, the tune changed. It became more about “hey, get your nose out of that book and do something.” Okay, so reading does not constitute doing something? I never have figured out why there is the double message there. Read, read, read, and you will do well in school, which proved to be true. Then suddenly it’s, you read too much.
Hey, I have a neighbor who is driving me crazy, wanting to take over my yard. Maybe it is just like my brothers back then. Maybe I just need to download a new book and I will cease feeling threatened and relax?