Yesterday I finally had to admit that I can't possibly read to my kids all the great books I want to read to them. I just don't have time; there are too many. This came to me as I handed my girl a copy of The Wolves of Willoughby Chase, a gem I had read to them several years ago, and wanted to reread before going on with the rest of the author's books. But there isn't time, and if I wait till there is, they may be too old to enjoy it. So, she is on her own. (The boy may already be too old or it might not catch his interest anymore. He is now devouring Heinlein.)
I won't read the "Swallows and Amazons" books to them again, and maybe not even The Lord of the Rings. My reading aloud time has to be reserved for books they need to know, but that they can't or aren't likely to read on their own, at least not yet. Right now it's Great Expectations.
This reminded me of a day when I stared at the books in the shelves in my apartment (I must have been in my late 20s) and realized that I would never be able to read all the books I wanted to, or would want to. I just remember the despair I felt, over this lack of time. I got over it, and I'm not despairing now. But still...
People always warn against mothers wishing their children will hurry and grow up. You'll miss their baby/toddler/preschooler days! I never really miss those days. I am thrilled with each new independent step they take. I don't long for an infant. I long for more reading time with my children.
And, more reading time for myself. But, that may come. I can't imagine Heaven not having a big library. Maybe I'll even get to work in it! Though the way things are looking now, it seems more likely I'm to be laundress or cook. Still, probably we'll get reading breaks, right?
(Don't criticize my theology on this one, please.)