I have a problem.
I crave it. I need it. I find myself twitchy if I don't get to spend some serious time doing it every day. Whenever a quiet moment arrives, I seek it out. I hide how much I do it. I know where all my favorite things are stashed. I think carefully about which one I chose. I lust for just a moment with my beloved and fantasize about sinking into a pillow, sighing with relief that my time with it is finally here.
I am, of course, talking about reading.
I cannot seem to get enough of reading. I want to do it all the time. I get very cranky, twitchy even, if a day goes by and I haven't had enough time to read. I have been known to get particularly pissy when interrupted while reading something really interesting when I'm almost finished.
(One might even say I am an avid and voracious reader.) (That was for Swistle.)
I like to think of this vice as more than socially acceptable, why it's LAUDABLE! It can only be a good thing that I read every spare second, often ignoring my children's requests for attention because I NEED to find out what happens to our poor Katniss! It's okay with me that they will remember me as Mom-who-always-had-her-nose-in-a-book/New Yorker/newspaper because haven't we all have heard that seeing parents read is the key to making our children geniuses (or something like that)?
I also like to think that my reading habit is preferable to watching television. After all, escaping into the blue-lighted oblivion of the Real World/Road Rules Challenge and its ilk has always been a sure sign that I am headed to a full-blown depression. Too much TV leaves me feeling slack-jawed, restless and in desperate need of both a shower and a long walk. Reading, on the other hand, brings me real knowledge, relaxation and contentment.
When I'm being honest, I must admit that I escape into reading in much the same way that I have, on occasion, escaped into TV. I long to dive into someone else's reality; now, I just choose to find that escape through the written word rather than the flickering screen. I still cling to the belief that reading is essentially beneficial and when so much of my SAHM day can feel like mindless drudgery, I yearn for the mental stimulation most reading brings. I feel, frankly, that it is my DUE.
CG, that rational spoilsport, disagrees with me, though. He feels the breakfast table should be free of reading materials to better facilitate face-to-face communication (pffft, whatever that is) and finds it off-putting that the first thing I want to do after putting the girls to bed is read. He claims QUESTIONABLE instances of me not hearing the kids ask me something of vital importance. (You want more milk? WHATEVER. I'm reading the NYT Modern Love column.) He expresses grave concerns about how much time is lost that could be used finding real-live, live-in-Virginia type friends because I am so often engrossed in the written lives of computer-based friendships.
(But you're my real friends, too! You are!)
I do understand his point of view and so I am struggling to let go of my newspaper-at-the-table breakfast. And I'm trying to set aside specific blog reading time and leave all books and magazines in the bedroom to be reserved for quiet time and bedtime.
In exchange, though, I think he should have to turn off his iPhone at the table.