At times, the world seems unbearable to live in. With the rise of school shootings, stress from school, burglaries, rapes, fires, and natural disasters, reality tends to have more bad than good in it. When the bad gets too overwhelming, imagining something good happening next gets harder and harder. That is when I need to escape reality.
I was, and still am, a bookworm. I devoured books, one after the other. In elementary school, my favorite day was when we went to our library and was able to pick new books. On rare occasions, the book mobile would visit and I would spend as much as time as I could, scanning each book to pick my next adventure. I did not read to gain more information. My main purpose was to get lost in a story, to get engrossed with the story that I forgot where I was. My worries disappeared as long as my nose was stuck in a book.
Upon reaching middle/high school, I was part of the library club. I would spend a class period checking books in and out, placing them in their rightful spot on the shelf, and recommend books for some students. I was the president my senior year and took great pride in that position. High school was not an easy time. Dealing with different cliques, trying to ignore snide comments, and the drama was a constant strain. With every chance I got, I would get a hall pass from my teacher to go to the library. The library became my safe haven.
College made it difficult to read for fun with the amount of work that is required, but I still find time to read a few pages. Even if I already read a book, I would reread it, picking up on little details that I may have missed before. I put time aside in the evenings before going to sleep for “me” time. For the most part, “me” time consisted of reading with the occasional drawing. Now, writing my novella, I can create a world of my own imagining, give each character his/her own personality, and get lost in writing.
Reading ultimately became my crutch to escape from reality. I became emotionally tied to each character. Over time, I found another escape with some favorite TV shows. Looking back at everything I read and watch, there is a common theme: happily ever after. Not so much a fairy tale happily ever after, but one where the hero is triumphant in defeating their foe, the good person stumbles along the way but learns that those stumbles made him/her stronger, and everything works out in the end.
Maybe that is why I believe in happily ever after. In the end, everything will get better.