I have a confession to make.
I don’t read books to my kids.
Which is kind of funny, because I have always loved books. I wrote and illustrated my first when I was just in kindergarten, and kept the practice up for my entire life.
We started out normal enough when my oldest was a baby. We got a few children’s stories, and I read them enough that I could recite them from beginning to end without any prompts; my daughter’s absolute favorite book was simply titled Water Animals and consisted of pictures and names of things like dolphins, fish, and a polar bear for good measure.
That all changed when baby #2 came along.
My oldest started tearing apart books. Water Animals was shredded to pieces, so I taped it together as best I could then tucked it away somewhere safe (it will probably be years before we find it again). After giving her some time to adjust to having a younger sibling, we bought more books and to my dismay those were also torn up. Several months later, I mentioned to a neighbor that we didn’t have any children’s books, and she gave us a few that also met the same fate.
I was tired of cleaning up the mess, so I gave up. No more.
These days the children and I snuggle up with our Nintendo 3DS and read video game dialogue together.