March 5, 2012

book lover

I realize that I am, perhaps, a little over excited about my reading girl. But I can't help it. I have struggled with the fact that Briton doesn't instinctively love reading. It's something I just don't understand. How could anyone not love to read, need to read, depend on reading to get them sanely through the day? It shouldn't bother me so much. Will also doesn't love to read, it shouldn't be such a shock that his son, who is so like him in so so many ways, would rather wrestle with the dog or build a Lego fortress or play a video game than sit quietly and read. I've told myself this a lot over the years. That it's ok for him not to feel the same way that I do about books. That I can encourage and reward, but never force him to love it. And he reads, don't me wrong. These days he is reading more and more and with an increasing interest, but still, given the choice, he will generally not pick a book. So walking into a room to see this, makes me a little giddy.
Last night, just as I was starting dinner, Evie ran into the kitchen. "I finished Dick and Jane! I read ONE HUNDRED PAGES! All by MYSELF! Can we go get another?" And even though I was in the middle of cooking and we have a billion books sitting on the shelf waiting for her to read them, we did go get another. Right at that moment. Because I remember that feeling. Turning the last page in a book and knowing that you, you, read it. All by yourself. I can still vividly remember finishing my first chapter book, after being a slow reader all through first grade and halfway through second, suddenly I was flying. I closed the last page of a Ramona book and flew into my parents room, past my bedtime. Past their bedtime. Because I had done it. I'd finished it all on my own.

The fact that she loves reading now isn't really a guarantee that she will continue in my book loving footsteps. And the fact that my energetic boy would rather play than read doesn't mean he wont. I still have high hopes on that front. I've seen glimpses of it in him already and I continue to heap books on him any chance I get. But I love, oh how I love, hearing that little girl beg for another. Watching her read while she waits for her pancakes in the morning or want to put pajamas on at two in the afternoon curl up on the couch, me with my book, her with her own. "Let's read mom."

Yes please. Let's read.