Since having kids, I don’t read books so much anymore. When I do they’re mostly about early childhood development, effective communication, attachment theory, or mindfulness (or often a combination of all four). Very, very rarely do I read fiction.
I used to. I used to live for reading and had shelves and shelves of books around the place. Problem is, I wouldn’t read them so much as devour them. Once I pick up a book of fiction I have to make sure that the next few hours are free because I have zero restraint once that cover is open. Even if I’m not particularly enjoying the book, I just cannot stop myself from peeking at the start of the next chapter and falling straight back into it, promising myself that I’ll put it down at the end of this chapter (and knowing full well that I probably won’t).
Back when I was the boss of myself this wasn’t an issue. Staying up reading til 4am on a Saturday? Totally fine, as I could just sleep in to compensate. These days? Not so much. Little people don’t take “Mummy’s sleeping off a Terry Pratchett hangover” for an answer when there’s a morning to run riot through.
So now I mostly read to learn. I find non-fiction books far easier to put down as I like taking breaks to ruminate on what I’ve just read before I move on to the next bit. If I just want to relax, I’ll check Facebook or read some blogs or biographies. If I do feel like trying out some fiction, I stick to YA or fantasy/sci-fi so I know that at least it won’t be a difficult read and I can generally get through it in a few hours (also, regular adult fiction? BORING. I read to escape my adult life, not get caught up in somebody else’s).
I look forward to the days when I can get lost in one activity for hours at a time again, but for now I’m happy to keep my books packed up in their boxes. The alternative just adds frustration to my life and who has time for that?
There is no expiration date on words. They’ll keep until I’m ready to feast once more.
This post inspired by yesterday’s Daily Prompt as part of the Blogging 101 course