I love to read, but I have struggled to find the time since having Hannah. I feel like any free time I have should be spent productively – like doing laundry, ironing, cleaning, or going through mail that seems to back up at an incredible pace.
I saw something recently on the news about the decrease in book sales due to the e-readers that have become so popular. (My mom has one she loves. Though she also reads LOTS of books and this makes it easier while she travels during the week.) There was a prediction of the gradual decrease of books produced over time. Like they would phase out like video tapes and CDs. This made me sad. I stare at the computer screen enough. I can’t imagine reading all my books on a screen too. Besides, is there anything better than curling up in a comfy chair with a great book, or reading at the beach with your toes in the sand? I am sorry. Call me old-fashioned, but I want things to stay the same in some regards.
Several months ago I read about a book on Amy’s blog by Kathryn Stockett called The Help. I didn’t need recommendations from anyone else, though I did get them. Simply from what she said, I knew I had to read it. It was about the South – the segregated South – set in Jackson, Mississippi. Help refers to the black maids that worked for the white families in the 1960’s. You can read the synopsis here.
So I finally made the time. I couldn’t put it down. I read it mostly late at night when Hannah (and Joe) were sleeping. And that is when I finished it, a Thursday night not too long ago. I hated when it ended. It is a book that I will never forget.
My favorite character was Aibileen. The storyline that impacted me the most was the relationship between Aibileen and the white child she took care of, Mae Mobley. The girl’s mother paid no attention to her daughter, much less show her love. Aibileen loved her though…
I kept thinking of Hannah. I cherish every moment I get to hold my baby in my arms. I was overcome with emotion imagining a mother not loving her own child, not wanting to take any part in raising them. After I finished reading I found myself standing over Hannah’s crib late into the night, crying because I love her so much, and praying because I am so blessed to have her.
The Help opened my eyes to events that shaped the South. Of course I knew these things happened from other books, from movies, etc. But to read it in the pages of this book was just different. It reminded me of the importance of being true to my beliefs and raising my children to be color-blind. Thank you Amy, Karen, Juliana, and everyone else that led me to read this book.