"We Read To Know We're Not Alone," -from Shadowlands
Start writing a post

"We Read To Know We're Not Alone," -from Shadowlands

Title is a quote from a character in the movie, Shadowlands - a movie about CS Lewis' life, and so true

"We Read To Know We're Not Alone," -from Shadowlands
Daria Shevtsova at pexels.com

I've always loved to read. There's a thrill down deep inside when you know you have a really good book waiting for you at the end of the day. My mind will wander to the plot and the last chapter I read throughout the day, and I find myself having to reel my brain back in and focus on whatever task I am performing at that given moment.

Since being in the Library Science class, Children's Literature, I picked this semester, chosen partly because it was a writing intense class (on my list for specific genres to choose from), and partly because I just love this genre, I have read more books I love than at any other time in my life. And that says a lot, since I read so many books when my daughter was growing up, I cannot even count them or remember them all. That being said, I do have a few that I have saved over the years in a very special armoire in the event my daughter wants them for her own children someday.

Many of the books I have chosen to read for this class this semester came to light out of the research I was obliged to do for the class, and most of them were picked from a reading list of either being on the NY Times Bestsellers' list or because they won particular literary awards. Educated, by Tara Westover, was one of those books. This one I read not for the class but because it was on the Bestsellers' list and the reviews intrigued me. This week, being spring break, allowed me some "my own choice" reading and along with working on a book, I am going through as many of these as possible.

Oftentimes, I have met other Christians who believe in reading only books by Christian authors, and would even go so far as to not even read fiction. Because I was raised with the freedom of choosing my own books, and teaching that challenging texts that broaden one's view is not a challenge to my faith but rather a way to strengthen it further, I read from all kinds of authors. I never liked the "romance" books, but loved the classics, which were a huge part of my daughter's education, utilizing The Well-Trained Mind - A Guide To Classical Education from which I designed her syllabus each year. As I began reading these winners of medals and esteemed places in the literary world, my mind and heart began to soar, just as it did when we would read great classic books years ago.

As I made my journey through Westover's book, Educated, I was taken back many times to my childhood growing up in a small mountain community, amidst the beauty of the mountains and the sometimes isolation I felt from what lay beyond its protective blanket. Though my family circumstances were nothing as tumultuous in comparison to this author's, little scenes from my memory were piqued as I read about her feelings of being an outsider within her own family because she left the security of the mountain and the only life she knew. Though her work at Cambridge set her apart as someone whose talent allowed her to bridge the gap within her family of choosing to stay uneducated (she did not see the inside of a classroom until she was 17) or break out and seek the education that she desired deep within, she had to work through the feeling she did not belong among the other students she found herself sharing close ties with. I immediately felt a connection with this author because I did not complete college "when I was supposed to," and did not fit the usual mold and would always see myself as a bit of an outsider in my educational journey. I have been fortunate, like the author, to meet many people along this journey who have stated to me, "education has nothing to do with age," more it is the desire and courage to be willing to face your fears because the decision to pursue your goals outweighs any fear that might stop you.

I read CS Lewis a lot, especially during my morning devotional time. He is both a man of deep Christian faith, as well as a very educated apologist. In the movie about his life, Shadowlands, one of his students makes a remark to him about our desire to read and reach out to the world beyond our four walls, stating, "we read to know we're not alone." I am so thankful I read beyond my most liked and comfortable genres. My God and his words are not threatened by that choice. I see his love and his workings within every sphere I find myself, and they are always undergirding my journey and reminding me we are all connected in this big ole world he made. I think it brings him joy when we reach beyond our borders to see others, through his eyes, and choose to follow them in their particular journeys. These pages into another person's soul help shape me into a vessel he can use to affect the lives of those I meet on my journey. Each book lays the groundwork toward connection and healing; sometimes it is me who is healed, sometimes it is another through me.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Health and Wellness

Exposing Kids To Nature Is The Best Way To Get Their Creative Juices Flowing

Constantly introducing young children to the magical works of nature will further increase the willingness to engage in playful activities as well as broaden their interactions with their peers


Whenever you are feeling low and anxious, just simply GO OUTSIDE and embrace nature! According to a new research study published in Frontiers in Psychology, being connected to nature and physically touching animals and flowers enable children to be happier and altruistic in nature. Not only does nature exert a bountiful force on adults, but it also serves as a therapeutic antidote to children, especially during their developmental years.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

5 Simple Ways To Give Yourself Grace, Especially When Life Gets Hard

Grace begins with a simple awareness of who we are and who we are becoming.

Photo by Brooke Cagle on Unsplash

If there's one thing I'm absolutely terrible at, it's giving myself grace. I'm easily my own worst critic in almost everything that I do. I'm a raging perfectionist, and I have unrealistic expectations for myself at times. I can remember simple errors I made years ago, and I still hold on to them. The biggest thing I'm trying to work on is giving myself grace. I've realized that when I don't give myself grace, I miss out on being human. Even more so, I've realized that in order to give grace to others, I need to learn how to give grace to myself, too. So often, we let perfection dominate our lives without even realizing it. I've decided to change that in my own life, and I hope you'll consider doing that, too. Grace begins with a simple awareness of who we are and who we're becoming. As you read through these five affirmations and ways to give yourself grace, I hope you'll take them in. Read them. Write them down. Think about them. Most of all, I hope you'll use them to encourage yourself and realize that you are never alone and you always have the power to change your story.

Keep Reading... Show less

Breaking Down The Beginning, Middle, And End of Netflix's Newest 'To All The Boys' Movie

Noah Centineo and Lana Condor are back with the third and final installment of the "To All The Boys I've Loved Before" series


Were all teenagers and twenty-somethings bingeing the latest "To All The Boys: Always and Forever" last night with all of their friends on their basement TV? Nope? Just me? Oh, how I doubt that.

I have been excited for this movie ever since I saw the NYC skyline in the trailer that was released earlier this year. I'm a sucker for any movie or TV show that takes place in the Big Apple.

Keep Reading... Show less

4 Ways To Own Your Story, Because Every Bit Of It Is Worth Celebrating

I hope that you don't let your current chapter stop you from pursuing the rest of your story.

Photo by Manny Moreno on Unsplash

Every single one of us has a story.

I don't say that to be cliché. I don't say that to give you a false sense of encouragement. I say that to be honest. I say that to be real.

Keep Reading... Show less
Politics and Activism

How Young Feminists Can Understand And Subvert The Internalized Male Gaze

Women's self-commodification, applied through oppression and permission, is an elusive yet sexist characteristic of a laissez-faire society, where women solely exist to be consumed. (P.S. justice for Megan Fox)

Paramount Pictures

Within various theories of social science and visual media, academics present the male gaze as a nebulous idea during their headache-inducing meta-discussions. However, the internalized male gaze is a reality, which is present to most people who identify as women. As we mature, we experience realizations of the perpetual male gaze.

Keep Reading... Show less

It's Important To Remind Yourself To Be Open-Minded And Embrace All Life Has To Offer

Why should you be open-minded when it is so easy to be close-minded?


Open-mindedness. It is something we all need a reminder of some days. Whether it's in regards to politics, religion, everyday life, or rarities in life, it is crucial to be open-minded. I want to encourage everyone to look at something with an unbiased and unfazed point of view. I oftentimes struggle with this myself.

Keep Reading... Show less

14 Last Minute Valentine's Day Gifts Your S.O. Will Love

If they love you, they're not going to care if you didn't get them some expensive diamond necklace or Rolex watch; they just want you.


Let me preface this by saying I am not a bad girlfriend.

I am simply a forgetful one.

Keep Reading... Show less
Student Life

10 Helpful Tips For College Students Taking Online Courses This Semester

Here are several ways to easily pass an online course.

Photo by Vlada Karpovich on Pexels

With spring semester starting, many college students are looking to take courses for the semester. With the pandemic still ongoing, many students are likely looking for the option to take online courses.

Online courses at one time may have seemed like a last minute option for many students, but with the pandemic, they have become more necessary. Online courses can be very different from taking an on-campus course. You may be wondering what the best way to successfully complete an online course is. So, here are 10 helpful tips for any student who is planning on taking online courses this semester!

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments