I love reading. Lots. Books, magazines, fiction, non-fiction, newspapers, blogs, letters, post-it notes, lists. You name it, I love to read it. I even had my very own blog about my love of reading and the world of literature. Reading is a HUGE part of my life and a very big part of what makes me, me. But over the last couple of years the time I have had available for consuming reading material has decreased – quite dramatically. Now, I don’t want to make a direct link between this reduction in reading time availability and the birth of my Sweet Pea (but let’s face it, that’s exactly the reason!). At first it was the serious sleep deprivation that made reading an almost impossibility – in those first few months I could barely concentrate on the celebrity flicks in a WHO magazine, let alone focus on an in depth novel or piece of non fiction. Then it was someone else who wanted my one-on-one attention ALL THE TIME that impacted on my reading time – any sign of a book in my hands that didn’t contain Peppa Pig or Elmo would create an almighty scene capable of disturbing the entire street (and we lived in a big street). It’s not that I wasn’t reading as such, the aforementioned Peppa Pig and Elmo were in regular circulation, but I wasn’t reading what I really wanted to be reading, what I really needed to be reading for my personal sanity and enjoyment.
I can see that the tide is slowly turning. Sweet Pea is almost two now and I am so grateful that she seems to have inherited the love of books from myself and her dad. And don’t get me wrong – I love discovering books and reading with her – it is one of my favourite parts about being a mum. An almost normal sleep pattern in the household also means that I do usually have time at the end of the day to dip into a book or a magazine with a cup of tea alongside, and this is a time I truly treasure. But I do grieve the loss of my abundance of reading time, lazy rests and reads on afternoons and sometimes a whole weekend devoted to nothing but reading… Ahh, the memories.
How about others? How do you carve out precious reading time when parenting and other life activities demand so much of our time?