I was just sitting her checking my email when I heard the sound of Leah crying in her room. She was supposed to be picking up her toys for the night, and because this is often the case, I assumed she had hurt herself.
“Leah!” I called, “What’s wrong?”
“I can’t tell you!” She called back tearfully.
My mind switched gears and at this point I figured she had broken something and was afraid of getting into trouble.
“Come out here!” I called.
Leah emerged, red faced with watery eyes. She was sobbing like her little heart was broken.
“Honey, what’s wrong?” I asked her gently.
“I just can’t tell you.” She answered. This went on for a moment until I told her that if she wouldn’t tell me why she was crying she would go to bed.
“Okay,” she said. She climbed up next to me on the couch and leaned in, cupping her delicate little hands around my ear and whispered, “The reason I am crying is because I miss the book we just finished.”
We had been reading Leah’s first chapter book and last night we finished it up. My heart immediately went out to my daughter. As an avid reader I can totally relate to that empty feeling of loss when you finish a really great book. You get so invested in the characters and you wish you could know more of their story.
I pulled Leah into my arms and held her and told her that there are books I have read over and over again. I told her it’s important to keep reading new books so you can learn new stories, but that you can always go back to a favorite. It feels like visiting an old friend when you do. At that moment I felt proud, because my daughter, who is my polar opposite in so many ways, shares my love of words and stories. She has inherited something from me after all, and it is something so beautiful.
p.s. if anyone has any recommendations for chapter books I can read with her, bring them on! I think the one she enjoyed so much was around a 2nd or 3rd grade level. Nothing scary as she has nightmares, but anything with horses, fairies, princesses, or just regular girls she would love!