This past weekend was the first weekend in a couple of months that my family had some down time. We weren’t camping, vacationing, birthday partying or sucked into any other commitment. I actually got to stay in my pajamas and read one day.
It was probably around noon that lounging day when my husband said something to me that he’s said to many times before:
“You read too much.”
I always hate when he says that to me. Partly because I know it’s true. Partly because it makes me feel guilty and embarrassed. It makes me feel like I need to stop reading so much.
I mean, I get why he thinks I read too much. Reading is a physically lazy hobby. You’re sitting or lying there with a book in your hand. I do try to read while walking on the treadmill a lot just to make up for the time I spend sitting with a book.
I’ll admit I spend a ton of time reading. It’s probably too much. Most of it is at night after my daughter goes to bed and my husband’s watching T.V. I explain it to people by saying he watches stuff I don’t like, so I read instead of watching with him. While that’s true, there are better reasons.
I really do love to read. I try to explain it is like watching a movie, only better. Non-readers don’t get this. Wouldn’t it be better to have an actual picture of what’s going on instead of imagining it? My answer is no, it’s not. There are so many emotions that cannot be shown simply by acting. Unless there is a narrator, you’re not in the characters heads like you are in books.
A prime example of that would be Fifty Shades of Grey. I remember reading the book and becoming sucked in by Ana’s emotions. They made the book for me. Her emotions are what kept me reading. I recently watched the movie. I have to be honest. The movie and its lack of emotions made me rethink how I felt about the book. (I don’t like it as much as I did before.) Instead of it being about the emotional connection Ana and Christian had, all I saw was the sex. And it wasn’t a pretty picture. Lack of emotions ruined it.
Also, books usually include more than movies. Anything imaginable can happen in a book. Not everything can physically happen in a movie. It’s gotten better with the special effects that are being created, but it’s not as good some authors’ imaginations. Then, there is the time constraint of two to two and a half hours. Most books take longer than that to read.
But that’s not even the real reason I read.
I read to feel.
Some people might label it escaping the norm, but it’s about feeling something for me. In my early twenties, everything was new and exciting. Once I started working full-time things started changing. Every day was similar. I used to yearn for the weekends and finding something exciting to do. Then, I got married, had my daughter and became a stay-at-home mom. While there were many exciting milestones, there was also a lot of boredom. My mind was used to the fast-paced work environment. Now, there wasn’t a lot of mental stimulation. I turned to reading to keep my mind sharp.
As I started reading, I discovered new authors and books. I found authors like Colleen Hoover, Jessica Park and Ginger Scott, that had me feeling. I felt so many emotions that I hadn’t in such a long time: first love, longing, heartbreak, etc. While I wouldn’t want my life to be any different from it is now, it was nice to be reminded of feelings I felt in my younger years when everything was new and exciting all the time. It made me appreciate my current life even more.
So, what I guess I’m trying to say through this long and rambling post is that I’m okay with reading “too much.” I’m not going to stop because it truly makes me happy. I know not everyone will understand my love for it, but that doesn’t matter. And the next time my husband says I read too much, I’m going to say,
“You spend too much time in the garage, snowmobiling, watching T.V., on the computer…”
Maybe that will help put things in perspective because life is too short not to do the things you love. And I love reading.
**Update: I feel the need to add to this post that my husband is an amazing guy. We normally “get” each other. My obsession with reading is one area where we don’t always see eye to eye. He’s not a reader, so how could he understand? I hope my comeback at the end of this post doesn’t seem too sassy. It’s really just my way of putting my love of reading in a way he would understand.