Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Books, books, and more books

I started reading in 1st grade. This didn't exactly begin my love affair with books - that began before I can remember, back when Mom and Dad actually took time to spend with us kids - but the magic became all mine in Mrs. Hurst's 1st grade.

Things started simple, "See Wiggles run. Run Wiggles, run!" But simple and wonderful need not be mutually exclusive ideas. I devoured these primers; eager to see what Bill or Nancy would do next. Sally and Kitty and Larry all became an enormous part of my life, and their adventures were mine.

Soon, I had graduated to "chapter books" and by the end of 2nd grade, again with Mrs. Hurst I had become intimate with the Ingalls family, and imagined my own life on the prairie. Always since then, whenever asked to define or describe myself or my interests, my first response, still even before Mother, is Reader.

Books have so shaped who I am today; I own my last name because of Lois Lowery's A Summer to Die; I found the strength to leave an unsatisfying relationship thanks to Alice Walker's Temple of my Familiar. I'm not afraid of the dark thanks to Stephan King.

I am a teacher because I wanted to pass this amazing gift on to others.

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