Wednesday, April 27, 2011

My World

Before I had kids and before I got married, I was a reader. If I wasn't reading a novel, it was like I was only half alive. Now that's a weighty statement. Do I exaggerate? I don't think I do. It's akin to my relationship with music when I was a teenager. Those crazy teens today who can't breathe if their iPod headphones are out of 15cm easy access from their ears  - I would have been one of them. I can't understand them now, and I prefer silence to music these days, but my trusty walkman and portable tape player were never far from reach when I was 16.

I couldn't sleep without reading before bed. A book was the first thing I packed for a holiday. My shelves of books were my trusted companions as I moved house every 18 months or so during my 20s. Looking back over the last 6 years... I must have read maybe an average of one or maybe two novels a year. Falling into bed after 24 hours of broken sleep + breastfeeding and then child-chasing + houseworking + playing fairies + negotiating and now work + mothering + community involvement + financial responsibility + iPhones + the age of the HBO tv series..... books have all but disappeared from my world.

Until now.

They are back. I've read and enjoyed two novels since the start of the year. Last year I spent probably 10 whole months reading Cry, the Beloved Country. This year already I have read Vernon God Little, after hearing an interview with author DBC Pierre on the radio last year. And last night I finished Noah's Compass, by Anne Tyler, who has held the title of "My Favourite Author" since 1989 when I studied Accidental Tourist for year 12 English.

Could this really be why I am feeling more alive, more whole and more human? Or am I reading because I feel more alive, more whole and more human? I don't much care to argue. I just need to decide what I'm going to read next.....