I had a rough spring. I won’t go into it here, but trust me, it was rough.
We all go through hard times, and during those difficult stretches, things change. You eat more and sleep less. Or you sleep more and eat less. Or you exercise, or you don’t. Your schedule shifts and morphs until you realize you can’t take it anymore. You have to get back to where you were.
I’m finally getting there. How do I know? Because I’m reading again.
I was stunned for a while, I had experienced a loss and all I could do was read about loss. Then I didn’t read at all. But here’s the thing, I write for a living. So here I am, for months, a zombie shuffling through life, taking contents out of my well without replenishing the water.
Writers have to read. We have to.
So, finally, the magazines that were stacking up slowly enticed me. Their pages like fingers motioning me near. Then, I was in the library, loading my backpack with books.
The stacks grew—two next to my bed, one near the couch—until I found myself reading again. Every day. Scary books and cooking magazines and short story compilations and essays and funny paperbacks and graphic novels.
I missed it. I’m so glad it’s back. That I’m comfortable enough in my own life to dive back into the stories of others. That I’m able to lose hours in storylines, characters, and dreams. That I can escape into other cities, romances, ages, and eras. Because if fictions are lies that tell the truth, now I’m finally able to face my own demons by staring down the demons of others.
Does that make sense? If not, I’ll blame it on my reprieve from reading.
I have books again, so I know it’s going to be ok.
Mali Anderson is a Chicago-based content creator. She creates blog posts, web copy, original photography, and feature articles.