I can’t remember not reading. According to my mother (who may be a bit biased), I was reading by the time I was 3. My first vivid memories of reading are found in my walnut-paneled bedroom. The window open with the box fan running, I would lie down across my floral comforter, open a book and set off for the prairie, 19th century England, or some other exotic locale. I didn’t care where I went, just that I went.
Today I am still wooed by a good read. Far away places and times beckon me through the pages, and I am smitten. My husband and daughter don’t see how I can be so totally engrossed in a book that I’m oblivious to my surroundings. They just don’t understand.
While being the lone bookworm in my family is not my choice, it’s something I’m accustomed to. My parents tried, unsuccessfully, to encourage my brother and sister to read. My dad isn’t a reader. My mom used to be, but never with as much intensity or enthusiasm as I had. I was lonely at times, but I had company. Laura Ingalls Wilder. Elizabeth Bennett. Nancy Drew. Dear friends I met in my childhood, they have become part of my identity.
My husband doesn’t care much for reading. Unfortunately, and to my great dismay, my daughter seems to be following in her father’s footsteps. I’ve gone to great lengths to open the world of books to her, but reading isn’t active enough for her. She doesn’t realize that she can hop the ferry to Prince Edward Island or take a wagon out west…if she would only open the pages and dive in!
Perhaps I should panel her room and put a box fan in the window. It’s worth a shot. . . .
Melissa the bookworm is the rare species in her home. She resides in Virginia and at Breath of Life.
You just described me! 🙂 I was reading by the time I was 3 as well…my sister would come home from school with new books from the school library every week, and I would grab them from her and read them before she had a chance to. Still love it, and I hope my daughter will to.
Jennifer, Snapshot says
Being a reader, it’s hard to imagine that someone wouldn’t want to immerse themselves as you described so well, but I guess everyone is different.
I, too, was a young reader, reading all sorts of Dr. Suess by the age 4. In fact, I have very few memories from my early childhood that don’t include reading.
My daughter (my oldest) is seven, and while she’s one of the best students/readers in her class, she doesn’t have the same love for books that I did at her age (I can remember starting the Little House series at 7). I keep hoping she’ll discover that “one” book that sparks her imagination but I’m not trying to push it.
Nice to meet you, by the way! Lovely post!
Me, too! Me, too! Thankfully my husband is a reader and comes from a family of readers. It looks like my oldest (5 yr) is going to be a reader also. I’m very glad!
I too had a paneled bedroom with a fan! No floral bedspread, but a quilt. And the books! Always the books!
I used to climb the tree in our front yard and hide up there and read. I always got new books in my Easter basket and Christmas stockings. The librarian was my favorite elementary school “teacher”. My husband likes to joke at how engrossed I can get in a book. I literally don’t know what’s happening around me.
Fortunately, my husband and my boys love to read. Depending on the book, my 10 year old can get just as engrossed!
Loved your post!
It took me back to the days of curling up with Dr. Seuss in elementary and the time spent at the local library ‘stocking up’ on Nancy Drew mysteries for the week. Unfortunately I too am the only ‘avid’ reader in my family. You would think with 5 children at least one of them would have loved it as much as I. Our three girls have become readers more and more as they have entered their adult years. I don’t know if it was the required college reading or slowing down from the constant social life that is contributing to their interest…but I will take what I can get.