A lot has changed since I began my adventures as a blogger. My life has been enhanced in many ways. One of the biggest being that I now belong to the ever growing community of readers who choose to share their passion online with others. For myself, this was one of the very reasons for establishing my niche in the blogosphere because..
I live in a home of non-readers. Yes, you read that correctly and maybe even relate to it on some degree. But what does that mean?
Reading has been a passion of mine for as long as I can remember.. well anything. It started with a growing collection of picture books that soon gave way to classics such as A Wrinkle in Time and Anne of Green Gables. And while most members of my immediate surroundings were not avid readers, I was fortunate in the fact that they were supporters of my love. I received regular shipments of Sweet Pickles (children’s picture book series – not actual preserved cucumbers) and trips to our small public library with no complaints. My love was fostered and it grew.
Jump forward x amount of years (I plead the 5th here); I now live in a home with 3 beautiful individuals who compromise my immediate family and heart. 2 teenage children and one doting nonhubs. Life is great, but they do not read. Okay, well the children read for school, and my daughter admits to occasionally enjoying a required title, but the days of reading with them are slowly fading into a distant but fond memory. The nonhubs chooses to invest his time in other hobbies when home. I am more than understanding and accepting of this, but would be lying if I said there were not some hurdles as a result of our differences. The struggle is real.
Challenges of being the lone reader in the home:
- Relatability –There is just no easy way to share the love of a great story or new book with a non-reader. I often find myself making ridiculous comparisons to other hobbies and objects that never quite capture my passion. I want to share those magical and emotional moments, but do not know how.
- Finding “alone” time to actually read – This is a big one when you throw a family in the mix. Multiple interruptions and distraction can quickly turn the act of reading into a feat of strength! I have a feeling this would be different in a home full of readers 😉
- Explaining why I need another book – Okay, so granted the nonhubs is fully supportive (he just added three bookcases in our bedroom) but there are certainly times I am sure he cannot understand why I “must have” another book when I own so many.
- Trips to the bookstore are lonely – My heart sores when I walk into the bookstore, but a small part of it also aches when I see my loved ones sighing and looking for the nearest exit or checking the time repeatedly. I long for romantic perusals through the aisles, yet I am met with “I will be downstairs”.
- Being told not to request books for your birthday or holidays – This one kills me. I hear it every year from friends and family, “but we just want to give you something different.” But I want books!
- Book to film adaptations – When a favorite title is finally being made into a film and your heart sores because you will be able to share it with family and then it is a huge flop that fails to capture the true essence of the story. A piece of me dies when this happens..
- Trying not to sway non-readers – I have really tried to tone this habit down, but I constantly find myself wanting to push books on others and remind them that they just have not found “the right book” yet. They don’t appreciate this constant nagging and it certains does not make them want to read.
- Explaining that I actually do not need to socialize more or make friends – I am completely comfortable and happy spending my weekends in burrito mode and enjoying my latest read. No, I do not need to get out more.
- Convincing others that I am not a hoarder – I do need all 400 books and that new bookcase. I do!
- Accepting that non-readers are not missing out on life – It is important to remember that while we cannot imagine a life without books, they draw inspiration and happiness from other activities and interests. Sounds silly though, right?!
- The weird looks I still get over book sniffing – They just do not get it.
- Trying to explain why I need to have a book with me at all times – This one is self-explanatory to the reader, but not so much to the non-reader.
My list could go on for days now that I have started it. In the end though, I am actually blessed with a family that supports our differences and maintains a great amount of respect for them. We realize and embrace the fact that these are what make us who we are. But they will never truly grasp my passion even if they respect it. I am sure they feel the same of some of their own hobbies. There are plenty of times I long to sit and discuss my current read over tea or share a favorite book. Being an avid reader in a home full of non-readers can feel isolating at times.
Do your friends and family read? If not, what are some of the obstacles you encounter as a result of this? I would love to know how you handle these and live among the land of the non-reading.