Each night my children get to pick out their own books for me to read aloud to them. More times than not, a book becomes a favorite, and we reread it each night for the entire week.
I mean, I love If I Built a Car as much as the next mom, but this is the 74th time, kids! Sometimes I put up a fight, but mostly I relent, and then settle in to make sure that the Berenstain Bear cubs did end up learning how to share.
Why are they latching onto the same books? Don’t they know there was a whole literary world out there!? This is not “Groundhog Day.”As I stressed over this one night in bed, my husband asked what I was reading, and I realized it was The Selection … for the third time.
I went to some immediate excuses:
“I don’t want anything scary before bed.” (As if I’ve ever read anything scary in my entire life.)
“I’m only reading for a moment, and I don’t want to get sucked in.” (This is always a lie.)
“I finished my book, and I don’t have a new one yet.” (While totally ignoring the giant TBR pile on my nightstand.)
But here is the truth. I can count on my books.
If I had to pick, I’m going to reread an old book – one that reminds me of a simpler time in my life. In a world of uncertainty, it’s comforting for me to know that every night when I go to sleep Elizabeth is still going to find Darcy in Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice, Claire is going to slip through the stones in Outlander, and Katniss always volunteers for her sister in The Hunger Games.
Maybe my kids feel that way too. Second grade politics can be disheartening; and it’s a world without naps! And have you thought about how terrible it must have been for us to have our portable toilets taken from us at three?
Maybe when they reach for Amelia Bedelia, it’s be because they know what is going to happen. They know Mommy will snuggle them tight and bark with Biscuit or fake a spectacular terrible French accent with Fancy Nancy.
I hope at this moment I’m raising chronic rereaders. At least I can say, they get it honestly.