Reading With My Boys

Using Books to Raise My Boys

Words are Like Air to Me

on February 8, 2013

The other night my husband and I were having a conversation about sports and reading, in the end he made the comment that they are the same thing, they are both entertainment.  I won’t even get into how much that comment bugged me.  As I have taken time to think it over I am less miffed because my dear husband made this announcement about reading based on what reading is to him.  Now this wonderful man is an engineer and not a big fan of the written word.  However, in recent years he found that he really enjoyed the Storm Testament series.  He read it to himself and is just about to finish it up with my boys.  For him it is entertainment…but for me…

How do I put into words what reading is for me.  I will begin by saying that it is like air to me.  I live in small townville USA and I love it here.  I am not a city girl and I love everything about the country.  With that said diversity is tough to come by and for the most part all of us here live very similar lives.  My own life as a stay-at-home mother of six sons isn’t exactly a Tolstoy novel if you get my drift.  I can’t tell you how many times in a day I say the following things, “Don’t write on the walls, don’t spit in your brothers face, because I told you too,” ad nauseum.  This is my life and I love it, but without a well written book I would be seriously lacking in mental oxygen that I so desperately need! 

People don’t speak like authors write…this is probably good because if you walked up to someone and said, “Oh, magic hour when a child first knows it can read printed words,” I don’t think they would clutch their heart and say “oh yes I know what you mean,” but would most likely think you had forgotten to take your meds that day!  But, those words are there written by Betty Smith in the fantastic novel A Tree Grows In Brooklyn and I can marinate in them any time I want.

For me reading is a way to peek into other people’s lives, a way to gain empathy for people I will never meet, see places I will never see and come to understand things that would be otherwise impossible for me to understand.  But mostly reading is a way for me to see through a variety of ways, how people navigate the light and the dark in this world.  I believe in God, I believe that he sent us here with a purpose and I believe it is embedded somewhere in all of us.  To me a great author is someone who can re-affirm my faith, even if they aren’t necessarily talking about God directly.  A great book is one that plants my feet even more firmly on the right path.  This is what reading is to me.  So am I entertained, sure I am.  But, I also love running, would you say the only point of running is for entertainment?  Of course not.

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One response to “Words are Like Air to Me

  1. Laura says:

    Love your posts! I feel like I’ve been living in China, I’ve been so immersed in reading Wild Swans…Cannot imagine life without books.

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