Archive | March, 2013

Bethany, Books, and Blogs

21 Mar

I’ve been feeling bad about myself lately. Here’s why.

I love books. LOVE books. I used to read all the time, and I’d generally be reading 2-3 books at the same time. I couldn’t go into a bookstore without leaving with at least one new book. I’d get books for Christmas or my birthday and be overjoyed. I’d carry a book in my bag with me everywhere, like Rory from Gilmore Girls. I’d read before leaving for work in the morning, at lunch, before bed, whenever I had a free minute. And then, one day, I just stopped reading.

I can’t pinpoint what happened, exactly, but I think a number of things contributed to my stopping. I started suffering from motion sickness when I’d try to read on the bus during my commute. I was tired of feeling depressed when I’d reach the last book in a series I had loved. I subscribed to Netflix and started spending more of my free time than I care to admit watching entire seasons of televisions shows in one day. Yes, ONE DAY. I became overwhelmed by the sheer number of books I had piled up to read PLUS the infinite number I didn’t actually own but still wanted to read someday and, in pure Bethany fashion, simply shut down and stopped trying to decide what to read. (When I am stressed and have too much to do, I just do nothing. It’s a problem.)

This made me sad. I had given up something that had been my go-to activity since I was very young, something that had always been fun and rewarding. It also made me feel guilty. People continued to give me books that I was not sure I’d ever get around to reading. And, on top of all that, I felt out of the loop. I couldn’t comment on the latest bestseller or excitedly rave and gossip about the newest fun series that my best friend was undoubtedly also reading or say that yes, I had read the book before seeing the movie. I hated having all these awful feelings about an easy pastime that was way more intellectually stimulating than watching TV and should have been something I did naturally. So, I tried to get back into it. I’d pick up a book, read a few chapters, put it down, and ultimately forget about it. I just had no desire to read. Trying to make myself read a book was akin to my mom trying to get Little Bethany to eat her cooked carrots. (That’s a fun story for another day.) (Oh, I just remembered that I owe you all the gopher story, too. I’ve been slacking.)

And then, Rachel and I started this blog and I suddenly became very interested in other people’s blogs. I started surfing the internet machine daily for fun reads. A work friend and I always share interesting new blog or article finds with each other, and I pretty quickly amassed a list of favorite blogs that I check with obsessive frequency. The topics of the blogs vary quite a bit (hair, make-up, parenting, relationships, humor, current events, random musings) as do the people who write them. Some are written by people who I have NOTHING in common with; some are written by people I’m convinced I would be BFFs with in real life. Some of them are not terribly well written; some of them exude a witty, descriptive quality that I can only hope to someday achieve in my writing. But one thing they share is that they all captivate and fascinate me. I love learning about these people’s lives. I’ll go to the archives, start at the beginning of the blog, and instantly feel like I really know these people. They’re my internet friends who do not know I exist. Does that make me feel like a creep? In some ways, yes, yes it does. But, they’ve put themselves out there just like I have- they WANT people to read what they’ve written. They want to share something with the virtual world.

Just yesterday, as I was once again feeling sad about my lack of reading, I came to the realization that I am still reading- just not books! And I’m reading a lot more non-fiction than I used to. Instead of reading make believe, I’m reading about real live people (well, hopefully; the internet is a tricky place) who share anecdotes, wisdom, personal challenges and triumphs, and often provide me with a new way of looking at things. I don’t feel so bad about myself anymore.

FRIENDS AND MOTHER: This does not mean you should stop buying me books. I still love books. In fact, I actually started a new book today and think I figured out how to read on the bus without getting sick! So, perhaps I’ll be delving back into being a bookworm…

Song of the Day: I’m Ready, I Am by The Format

Happy Anniversary, ITYWS!

15 Mar

Yes, we are an acronym now. Hurray!

One year ago today, I Thought You Were Shorter was born- and what a year it has been! Rachel and I have been pretty quiet lately, but I just wanted to let everyone know that we’re still around and will be back in the writing game soon. I know I have lots I’d like to share (how I was used to be a hoarder, an update on the ghost!!!, etc.), but I just haven’t been feeling very inspired lately. It happens.

Anyway, thank you all so much for reading! We’re at 10,744 views and could not be more thrilled. This blog started as a way for us to vent our feelings, record childhood memories, reminisce,  and perhaps start our memoirs- we just wanted to have fun with it. We never imagined that anyone would actually want to read what we had written! I’m always surprised when I bump into an old acquaintance who’s a faithful reader or hear from an old friend on Facebook that they love the blog. It’s a wonderful feeling to create something that others can enjoy. Please be on the look out for new posts soon.

Thanks again!

Song of the Day: This Is Not An Exit by Saves the Day