Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Between the Covers of a Book...Loving to Read

Reading has always been an escape from my every day world. When I was young it was that mysterious destination to escape to when my learning disabilities made me feel like the class joke in elementary school. I always picked books that were from a different time period and learned through them to enjoy history and different and more exotic worlds from my own simple Midwest surroundings.

After fifth grade the world and the different cultural worlds began to fascinate me, and from then on I was more into biographies and stories of Europe, the Middle East and far East. It took many years to find my way back to fiction and mysteries, but when I rediscover them in high school I couldn't get enough of it! From Sherlock Holmes to Anne of Green Gables I rediscovered worlds that were sometimes similar, and sometimes foreign to my own American experience. I really enjoyed the world, the people, and the many places I found between the covers of my books.

As a young mother I was often confined at home with sick children a book became my only escape during a busy day, and I began reading more, and later in the evenings so as not to be disturbed. But I also read with my toddlers, and as they grew we started sharing books at the dinner table. I would quickly devour my own meal, and then read a chapter or maybe two from books I thought my boys might enjoy. From Gary Paulson to Arthur Conan Doyle we discovered together the wilds of a northern forest, or the smoggy streets in a London of the 1800s.

As they grew we also discovered that they shared my difficulties with learning and began our cooperative struggle to a path through the maze that was the school year. Though they had some difficulties that carried on into their adult lives they also had a strong love for a good story which often helped them past some of adulthood's early frustrations. Don't get me wrong - for people who have reading problems, it isn't easy to like, or even enjoy reading but a love of a good tale often helped them climb that mountain toward cracking the code of letters, and the meanings of the written word.

Now we enjoy sharing favorite authors and different genres in the book world. We don't always agree on who we like to read, but we always revel in the discussions of the ones we do. Now I'm reading with my grandkids, and loving those discoveries all over again.

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