You know I often talk about how reading has changed my life...with others. However, I do not think I have had the pleasure of addressing my readers. Back story; I took a speech class for my degree. I love public speaking, I love speaking in general, but there is something about captivating an audience with your words that has always resonated with me. I guess that’s why I love to write so much. So here is what I wrote for that class. This was my speech.
I read to escape.
To breathe. To feel whole. In fact, Somewhere within the thousands of pages I have read in my life time I think I may have left my soul.
I read to escape.
It’s funny when you think about it. Sometimes I have such vivid dreams I feel as if every time I fall asleep I’m traveling to different places, realms if you would. The vivid colors and experiences I find within my novels gives me a bit of a reason to continue to live. To keep pushing if only to see and live through the hundreds of worlds in the pages of books I have yet to begin.
I read to breathe.
I mean this in the literal sense. See, I once felt my life was worth nothing and I still have found myself grappling with the decision to end my life a few times in my short 28 years and Every time after a failed attempt, I would throw myself into reading and i have a few million pages to explore. I breathe.
I read to feel whole.
See reading provides a respite. I am able to leave my own trapped mind and fully immerse myself as someone else in a tale. I feel complete. I’m someone else and my mind can compartmentalize my own problems somewhere else. I’m able to cope, grow, push, and continue. My therapist may consider it a way to avoid the real issues. I think it’s a way to face them indirectly.
When someone tells me they do not like to read, part of me feels lost, some of me feels angry. Reading is more than just a school assignment, which is where most of us learn to hate the practice, it is a way to grow and explore and find oneself.
When my ever pressing anxiety chokes me, when my responsibilities burden me, when life knocks my feet out from underneath me and I am broken, can no longer breathe, and I am trapped...I read. I come back into myself, I’m jolted into reality by escaping it. I regrow what is lost and after every single book I leave a piece of my soul to wander. Each piece re-inspires me, fullfills a need I am not 100% sure I had before I began the book, but it’s there in the end.
I read to escape. To breathe. To feel whole. In fact, Somewhere within the thousands of pages I have read in my life time I think I may have left my soul. But in my dreams, those pieces come back, I am me once again and I’ve survived another day.