I decided to grow up in 2020. At last.
I have spent a major part of the last decade avoiding just that – the growing up. No more of it now, for sure. The turn of the new decade will see a brand new me. Okay, ‘the brand new me’ appears to be tall claims so let me tone it down to a ‘well-rounded me’. Oh yeah, a well-rounded me sounds more suitable given the fact I am already halfway there physically (if you know what I mean) hence the other half will not be much of a big deal if I launch myself on a growth trajectory at this juncture.
“What is she up to? Isn’t she grown up enough? She seems like one in the blogger’s bio and in the photo. Arre behen, aur kitna bada hona hai?” There there! I can sense the questions brewing up in your
Thus, I reveal my intention…
Bada Hua To Kya Hua, Jaise Ped Khajoor
Panthi Ko Chhaya Nahin, Phal Laage Atidoor
– Sant Kabirdas
… which is absolutely not hidden in the above couplet by Sant Kabirdas.
The 2020 & beyond plan is to grow up with respect to my reading and graduate from reading children’s literature to more grown-up content. I might still read a middle-grade book here and there or between 2 serious reads. I have been comfortably engrossed in the world of children’s books throughout the last 8-9 years. I discovered my own wonderland in that world where I could go smaller or bigger as and when I felt like.
So while I was devising my 2020 & beyond reading plan for this year, I mulled over the reasons behind what kept me glued to the world of children’s literature.
The first and foremost reason was Dhruv. It was my will to raise him a reader coupled with his inclination towards the printed words in the books. I loved reading to him. He loved listening to me. I got books for him. He made sure I read all of them to him, many times for days together. It was as if they came with an unwritten prescription – To be read 10 times, 3 times a day. My throat would go soar, my energy would veer off yet he would not let me off. The book ‘Again’ by Emily Gravett explains my situation aptly.
Exhaustion and Therapy –
As much as I loved the above process, it was exhausting for me leaving me with no energy to read anything else, Therefore, I too gave up and got immersed in the world of picture books, to begin with. Picture books were therapeutic for me. The sweetness and innocence in stories, the colourful illustrations, and the glossy cover pages proved to be immensely helpful in dealing with my brokenness.
Discovery of a vast world –
With time, as I began exploring this world, I realised I had missed out on a lot during my childhood years. The big names and the book titles never crossed my path in the small city in North India where I lived. My reading was limited to a few monthly children’s publications in Hindi and English. On discovering the vastness of works available in children’s literature, I took it upon me to make up for the lost era. There was so much to read and so little time. How could I venture out of this when all I wanted was to dive deep into it!
Financial angle –
Between the option of spending the limited amount of money on children’s books and adult fiction & nonfiction books, I always chose to spend 95% of the budget on the former driven by all the reasons I have enumerated above.
I am a tortoise –
Let me admit, I am a tortoise. Everything I do, I do it slowly. Whether it is housework, physical exercise, reading, writing or just plain being, I can’t do it any other way except for slow. This is essentially who I am. I lose touch with myself the moment I begin to rush. As a result, I am not only left with less time at hand, I also take more time to finish reading a book thus limiting the numbers. And, then many a time I go back to re-reading a book soon after I finish it once. If I had not been a tortoise, maybe I could have read more.
More about the 2020 & beyond reading plan in a later post.