The Book Snob Opens Her Mind

Fracture
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The first time I saw “The Baby-Sitters Club” in graphic novel form, I rolled my eyes.

“Why on EARTH would they make those into graphic novels when there are perfectly good books out there?”

It annoyed me.

It seemed a cheat.

I was a snob.

It took me looking at my child, my Molly, eagerly reading for the first time in ages after declaring she now hated reading.  Her attention span wasn’t enough for chapter books to hold her interest, but graphic novels were another story.

It took me letting go of my bias to see how graphic novels could benefit a child like my girl.

I picked up those exact Baby-Sitter’s Club books for Molly at the library.

I picked up a  bunch of graphic novels for myself to try.

I found I don’t care for the comic-book ones…but those that tell a story (or stories), I enjoy.

My favorites so far have been Through the Woods and Amulet. I have several more to try, and I’m excited to do so once this chaotic work week is over.

The best part of opening my mind has seeing my daughters both excited to read again.

Molly is so excited that she’s actually begun picking up chapter books again.

Kennedy is enjoying interspersing her chapter books with these quicker reads of graphic novels.

I’m enjoying expanding my painfully narrow repertoire of reads to include something different, and learning what I like in this new area.

So, in short…you can teach an old dog like me new tricks. It just takes me letting go of my bias and opening my eyes to see the benefits.

So now that I’ve opened my eyes, I need your help!!

What are the best graphic novels for my girls?

What are the best ones for me?

The Empty Room

A few years ago we longed for this day.

For the past year we’ve dreaded it.

This past Friday arrived. Dreaded, anticipated, excitedly awaited, tearfully faced…

The teen got in his car and drove hundreds of miles away to the land he calls home.

I have been a bit of a mess through the whole thing – and yet I’m proud of how I’ve handled it all.  Because, knowing his aversion to overly emotional stuff, I’ve kept my cool, and only been a bit more huggy than usual.

We had our time to talk, and I was emotionally exhausted on the day he left, and been glad for the preoccupation of plenty of other things since he’s been gone.

But there are those times.

Those brief moments…

When it overwhelms.

When I cry.

The empty room.

Soon it will be cleared out and transformed into my home office again.

But it isn’t yet. There are still pieces of him in there.

And we all still pause outside the door expecting to hear Disney music emanating from within.

The quiet nights.

Nightly he would hang out with me after everyone else was in bed…we’d watch a Disney show of some kind, or Star Trek, or just talk with some random show on.  No matter what, the boy would be chatting, annoying, teasing, something…

I still sit at my desk and glance at the door expecting him to walk through the door.

It’s the frequent reminding of myself that he isn’t going to walk through that door that hurts.

I know in time I will adjust.

I know that he is happy.

I know that I am incredibly proud.

But oof…

This empty nest thing hurts…even when you have two more sitting around pestering you.

 


by Sarah Cass

Multi-published author. Mom of 3 special needs kids. Wife to 1 good man.
Redefining Perfect every day.


It’s The Little Things – Teen Affections

For a few years we struggled when it came to the teenager.

For those that aren’t there yet and don’t know…let me tell you, raising teenagers SUCKS.

I swear for two years it was a war zone here…but an oddly silent war zone.

Then he began to emerge as a full-fledged human. More? A full-fledged human I actually like.

Trust me, that’s huge.

Still, he is a bit of an odd duck (and it’s okay I tell you this because he’d admit it himself).  He doesn’t “do” emotions…I mean, they’re there and he feels them, but he’s not touchy-feely-lovey-dovey-crying-yelling-hugging sort of fellow.

He’d rather show his affection in other ways. There are times when those ways are annoying…

Like the constant “Look at this” – showing me unfunny ifunny’s.

Then there are the times when he uses what brought us together – Disney. He’ll ask to watch a Disney…whatever. Be it a movie or a “Behind the scenes” show of some sort.

Then there’s the flat out weird…

Like when he asks me for help ridding him of ear wax. Yes, you heard that right.  From birth my handsome boy has had a weird quirk (don’t we all)…but his body doesn’t dispel of ear wax the way a normal person’s does. It builds up, even if he cleans daily, until he can’t hear. At that point he needs regular flushing until the blockage is released.

And the random…

Like requesting that I join him for some garage sale shopping, or to head to the antique/flea market, always in search of playing cards (the thing he collects obsessively).

So the ways are weird, and funny, and annoying…but he does manage to show affection now and then.

The most special of all, though…are the rarest of all.

When he lets me hug him.

So few and far between, I treasure each of them. He’s leaving all too soon.