There’s never been a better time start reading books says Alannah Marsden
In the pre-pandemic world, everyday seemed shorter and busier than the last. To no one’s surprise, I too couldn’t find the time to read books anymore. “Read more books” had always topped my New Year’s Resolutions list. However, it wasn’t until the entire world paused due to the lockdown that I was finally able to make the time to immersed myself in the wonderful world of literature once again.
MAKING TIME TO READ
As a child, there was nothing I loved more than getting lost in a book. I’d spend hours climbing the faraway tree with Silky and Moonface, or hanging out in the Dumping Ground with Tracy Beaker and Justine Littlewood. My room was filled with stacks of books which overflowed from the three packed bookshelves lining the walls. For years, I’d take sunday trips to all the bookshops in town to buy a brand new storybook that I’d finish reading within the week.
As I got into secondary school and began getting busy with work, life suddenly got in the way. My passion for reading faded into the background and since then, it’s been rare for me to read more than one book a year.
REDISCOVERING THE JOY OF READING BOOKS
During the first lockdown, I was in my final year of high school, meaning when we left I had no school work to occupy myself with. It took me a few weeks to process the initial shock and upset I felt at what was happening all over the world. But slowly, I began finding ways to fill up my days.
One of the first things I did was pick up a book. It was something I hadn’t done for so long, and I’d forgotten how great it felt. Reading by myself felt so fulfilling and I made it through the 600 page book in a single week. So the following week, I did the same, and again the week after, until I was back to reading for hours almost every day. It really helped me get through lockdown.
One of my favourite things about reading is the escapism it offers. The chance to forget about reality and engross yourself in another world. During lockdown, feelings of sadness, worry and despair were so common. Of course reading didn’t just make them go away, but it certainly helped them become less of a burden. And it allowed me to feel some more positive emotions too, for a change.
I know that reading isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. I didn’t think it was mine until last year. Now that we find ourselves with more spare time than ever before, there’s never been a better opportunity to pick up a good book and briefly forget about the harsh reality we find ourselves in. Try starting small, perhaps a couple of minutes a day. It truly does make every day that little more enjoyable.