We are saturated with written words, from the moment our eyes open in the morning when we reach over to check our phones to when we step out our door where words almost seem to slam into us as we travel past billboard signs, business with their names brightly displayed in a contest to attract our eye to the almost banal act of the names of streets posted. It is impossible to go even one day without reading something.
Take a moment to think about everything you read yesterday. Did you read something worthwhile? That is something different for you, for me, for the person you passed on the sidewalk. Didyou read something that made you think, that made you feel, that challenged you to look beyond the confines of daily life? Inspired you to look around you with an open mind, encouraged you to find more information on the subject, dared your mind to dance with happiness?
I love reading, I love words. They are magical and wonderful. They can also be cruel and nightmarish. The power of words, the power of reading, is given to the reader his or herself. Isn’t that amazing? You get to choose their effect! You get to choose how much to let it in, how much you let yourself be changed by them.
Not everything you read has to be deep or insightful to still allow that power. I read daily with my two girls and they each have their own books they are drawn to. My youngest loves a book called I’m a dirty dinosaur. It has a lot of action words like shake, stomp, and slide so that by the end of the book, we are all up and moving with those words. When my oldest is going to read to me, she pulls out any of the books from That’s Not My series. She is in kindergarten and just beginning to read. These books are similar enough to each other that she has confidence that she knows what the words that she vocalizing will be the correct words. Again, isn’t that amazing? She gains confidence in herself from reading a book.
As for me, reading is a bit like yoga class. Some books are difficult, some are challenging. Some are meant to be picked up and not put down until the end. Some I am not ready for, some transport you to a state of mental awareness, some are meant to simply be enjoyed. There are none that aren’t meant to be tried, to be worked toward, and to be a goal. You never finish reading, just continue to move forward, building upon what you have done so far.