Monday, March 02, 2009

My little book worm.

I am a reader. I remember coming home from the first day of grade one, pissed right off because I had spent the entire day in school, and I still did not know how to read. When I was a kid, my mother would force me to put down my books and go outside. I read to escape. Books were my friends and confidantes. In college, I would often read right through the night.
Fortunately, I married another reader. Hubby reads more books than even I do. So I guess it's no surprise that for us, seeing our daughter read on her own is one of the best parts of parenting.
When Girl Terror was born, the hospital gave her a book. "The Itsy Bitsy Spider" is still on the shelf. We read to her right from birth. She is in grade one now, and is suddenly reading on her own. In the last few months she has discovered that she can read anything. She sounds out signs and store names. She reads to her brother. I often find her curled up on the couch, reading books about sharks, volcano's, and evolution.
I know what it is like to not have your love of books supported. I grew up in a home where any "difference" was suppressed. As a child who like to be alone with a book for hours on end, I was certainly different, so I had to change. My books were taken away, occasionally destroyed, and reading for pleasure was something I hid, like a guilty habit. I always vowed to never do the same to any child of mine.
I don't have the right words to express how thrilled and proud I am of this little girl. She is a sponge, and she seems to have an endless curiosity about the world around her. I hope she continues to love books, and learning. I even look forward to the day I find her with my book, losing my page, and wrecking the plot for me.


Matt, Kara and Hunter said...

I think we are raising a little book worm as well. Last night Matt said, "well if one of the only reasons our kid seems to cry is when we won't read him a book, I think we are doing something right". He is right, our kid doesn't cry about much, but if you won't read him a book when he wants, he loses it! We are reading well over 20 books a day to him, and he isn't even two!!

Fawn said...

The idea of having books taken away and destroyed is completely alien to me. My goodness!

It reminds me of a family we visited in Georgia (USA, not the country!) when I was in high school. The grandparents were old acquaintances of my dad's and it was the first time I'd met them. Their son was there with his wife and daughter, and the little girl was excited about a spelling toy she'd gotten for Christmas. She'd go around saying words and spelling them out loud. The dad got more and more annoyed until he yelled at her to shut up with all the spelling, already, she wasn't in school!

Even at 15, I was shocked at this stifling of an eager learner. My sister and I read her part of "James and the Giant Peach" that night and she ate it up. (Ha! No pun intended.)

I always regretted not getting her address to send her a few books now and then. I know it sounds dumb, but I hope she was able to overcome her dad's influence and learn to love words anyway.

Now that I think of it, what's even more shocking is that the grandmother was a teacher.

dogsled_stacie said...

Yeah, books taken away from a child... wow!!! I loved reading as well, yeah, I'm pretty proud - a few of my dogs seem to have picked up this trait as well...

I love your description of your first day at school and being pissed off about not reading that day! I can relate, I was obsessed with SPELLING at that age. In fact I remember reminding our teacher to give us a spelling test one day that she almost forgot about, much to the chagrin of the other kids!!!! I loved spelling tests, what a goof!

Matt, Kara and Hunter said...

So does it count that I hide books from Hunter after we have read it ten times in one day and I will go insane if I have to read it again?? :)

There are days I would love to toss Johnny Tractor and The Big Book of Trucks in the garbage, but I know the boy would be heartbroken!!

WackyMummy said...

My dad used to make me turn off my light at night when I was a kid and put the book away (to be honest, it was probably 11 pm when he did this and I was 8 yrs old), so then I would read by the nightlight and hide it when they came to check on me. Just made it that much more exciting! Otherwise, they were happy to have my "nose stuck in a book" the rest of the time. Still love reading, but thank goodness I now have other interests! Keep up the good support of your little bookworm. :)

MaryP said...

I am a total bookworm. Strangely, none of my children are. Oh, they all read for enjoyment, but none of them have the "lose-track-of-time", "hours-in-a-book" habit. I've done it all 'right': lots of reading to them, lots of modelling, lots of books around the house... and yet, none of them has reading as a passion.

It makes me a little sad. I'm happy for you that you got one!