I am blessed and thankful, to have had my childhood embedded in the ’70s. Back then, times were so different.
We played outside, often. We couldn’t wait to finish our breakfast so that we could have more time running around with our friends, and we wouldn’t come home until we were hungry. If we were lucky, we would have been given a sandwich to eat for lunch. But if not, we didn’t care. We all shared what we had, and the friendship felt good.
I loved playing outside. I was lucky enough to have grown up in a rural area, so finding a hedgerow in which to make our own little den, was easy.
I was quite a shy child. I would take a long time to warm to someone new, and I didn’t like those who constantly demanded attention. Being fake was also a no-no for me, even then.
Even though I spent many hours outside, whether it was pouring with rain or not, Mum always encouraged me to be outside even more. England has some beautiful countryside. But sometimes, I just wanted to be inside with a good book.
As I’ve got older, the urge to read a good book, has become much stronger.
I always knew that I didn’t like to be the centre of attention. As children, and a twin, Mum would parade us in front of anyone who would show the slightest bit of interest. Twins were much rarer then. I hated it. I wanted the ground to open up and swallow me so that I could return to my quiet place. Somewhere quiet where I could read a book.
I have never been good at concentrating in noisy environments. Instead, preferring to be somewhere that affords me the peace in which to think. Where I can devour the words of a book, and savour them quietly.
As an introvert, which can be a challenge in itself, reading a book, can take me to so many different places. It can also change my personality, even if only for a short time. It can allow me to be brave, and strong. It can also afford me the ability to speak out as a character, when I might not be able to do this in real life.
There have been so many times when I have just wanted to read a good book. When I am sad, I search for a happy book. When it is too long to wait until the warm weather arrives, I read a story about hanging around the beach.
Through books, I can be anyone that I have ever wanted to be.
It worries me how many hours children sit in front of a screen now. I want them to have the sort of childhood that I did. Having fun outside, and tiring themselves out so that they sleep well, and so they are then wide awake to start another adventure day after day.
My childhood was not perfect in any way. But, I wouldn’t have changed it at all. I had bruises and cuts on my legs and arms from trying to climb through ditches, and blackberry bushes. I was often covered in mud too. I always seemed to be smiling though. I miss those carefree times.
Now, my carefree times come from books. If I don’t like one, then I just choose another. Plus, I can read my favourite books time and time again.
Books make me happy. The smell, feel, and even the thought of a good book, takes me to somewhere nice. Somewhere where I long to stay for years. A heavenly place where dreams are made, and heartache is captured, never to resurface again.
Books do so much for me. I am thankful for them, and blessed by their presence.
Shopping, or a book — book wins
Dinner in a fancy restaurant, or a book — book wins
Cute new dress, or a book — book wins
Buy the entire shoe store contents, or a book — book wins
Now, writing my own books, has given me the same sort of peace. They still take me to places afar, even if they are written in my front room.
So, thank you for the invites, but I am a book nerd. I’m not being rude when I refrain from joining you sometimes, so please don’t be offended. It’s not personal. It’s just the way that I am.
Sometimes my life needs to be quietened by a book.
Going to that crazy gig to watch an amazing new band, might be what you love to do. Go and have fun. Enjoy every single second of it.
But me, I’d rather be reading a book.