After what felt like a hard weekend, but was in reality just me hitting a wall after two weeks of being out straight with others coming through my home, I was ready to begin living again today. While no great feats were accomplished, and minimal work was done, my mind was again functioning.
Laundry and dishes could be conquered. Floors could be cleaned, to some extent. And rudimentary social tasks could be looked on with something less than dread. It has always been this way for this "anti-social" wife of my husband. Mental and physical shut-downs occur periodically, but the day always comes when both mind and body come back to life. Today was that day, and it allowed me to focus on how to spend our remaining family time together.
Having recently heard of a used book store in the area, I had been looking forward to a time we might visit and mine for potential literary gems. We found the time today. My heart was light as this family of six made their way into a shop that was stocked, floor to ceiling, with books of all sizes, ages and topics.
Initially, I was noticing vast numbers of paperback novels, which did not light any literary fires in my being. But as I began to browse, and wend my way through aisle after aisle, I became transfixed. This became a treasure trove, that I was desperately trying to get to the bottom of before time ran out (it was nearly closing time).
Excitement ran through my veins as I noticed a wonderful classic, and then I would turn and face another. Beautiful, hard-cover, vintage collections of classic literature adorned these shelves. My husband, monitoring the four in the section meant for them, allowed me these moments of reverie. Books I had read and loved, others that I never had read, but had always wanted to, stimulated my brain. Poetry, mysteries, dramas, English and American literature pieces that deserved top billing, but were instead tucked into a corner of this quiet place.
Dickens, Alcott, Herriot, Thoreau. Authors that I had tucked into my arms. My children came to me, one by one. "Mommy! Did you see this one?" and "Mommy, What do you think about this?" or "I've been looking for these." My excitement and pleasure was mirrored in their eyes.
How blessed I am to have the joy of raising children who love to read. Children whose imaginations are alive. Who love nothing better than a quiet evening of reading a story together. G.A. Henty, Laura Ingalls Wilder, C.S. Lewis are all names they are familiar with and are enjoying as they learn about the world in which they live.
We pour over our purchases (perhaps too many of them), looking forward to the many hours of enjoyment ahead. Such a simple pleasure, but one that creates a bright spot in my life. And one that I pray will result in many bright spots in the lives of those I now lead. Those that I will one day whisper good-bye to, as they stretch out into the world beyond our little home. Someday, their bright spot may come from stepping into a little shop filled with stories. Memories coming back to them as they place their hands on pages that they turned before. Sharing with their own little followers, the literary jewels of generations past, and watching the wonder grow in eyes as stories of yesteryear work their magic once again.