I think the poem does a good job of summarizing it, but I’ll just reiterate it here to make sure I cover all the beats. So, up until about 8th grade, I really enjoyed reading books. So much so that I would often carry 3 or 4 free reading books with me while I was at school (I don’t know why, I hardly ever had time to read them). I don’t think my attachment to virtual media was the sole reason for my break from casual reading, but it was certainly one of the biggest. It was just a lot more convenient, and a lot more attention-grabbing, to hop on Instagram or Snapchat instead of getting invested in another book.
The triplet in the poem describes my feelings towards this period when I hardly read anything at all. Of course, I’m a saddened by it. I’m sure it would have been much more valuable for me to have read American classics instead of scrolling through the explore page. However, it was just how I was. I didn’t enjoy reading nearly as much as before. If I had purposefully stopped reading so I could be cool, then I’d be upset. But it wasn’t that, it was natural and I feel I should respect that.
Especially since I knew I’d always come back around to reading. I recently deleted my Instagram and Youtube accounts, which means that I had virtually three more hours everyday to get things done. I filled in this time with music and podcasts (technically from my phone), playing the ukuleles, writing, watching valuable media, and mostly playing lots and lots of sudoku and chess (also still from my phone.) Most recently, I’ve decided that I’m going to finish this book I started over the summer, Revolutionary Road (wow it’s depressing!!)
After such a long break, the refreshingness of just reading page after page is astonishing. It gives my eyes a much needed rest, and it’s an escape. It’s cliche, but the thing about books taking you to another world. You take shape as an observer to this reality, hidden underneath the words you read. Plus some of them are damn enjoyable to read, whether from their artistry or from humor, they really do bring me back.
Was there something you did as a kid that you wished you never dropped? Something to think about. Maybe soon you can try it out and, who knows, your younger self may have been onto something. Until next time.
Jonah J. Sobczak