Home > Family, Love, Parenting > Prescribing Joy: Reading Dreams

Prescribing Joy: Reading Dreams

Rachael (The Ramblings of a Would-Be Writer) is my sister, my most enduring friend, my Silver Star … and actually a writer.

prescribing joy

Reading Dreams

It’s the night time ritual
That blissful chaos
Of tugging jammies
Changing diapers
Potty breaks galore
And just one more water, pretty please
And then just one more… more.

Then reading time’s begun
That joyous time of lap-time cuddles
Silly voices, sing-song rhymes
With heads bowed in
Wriggly bodies writhing
As the chaos
Slowly
Slowly
Settles

To the rhythm of the books
To the sweetness of the rhymes
To the sadness of a monkey
Learning it’s okay to cry
To the swooping of a dragon
Dreaming in the skies
To the cats in hats
The Hortons and the Whos
To all the dreamers dreaming
And all the You Know Whos.

And as I’m reading –
As my voice lilts up and down
To be whomever it needs to be –
As I’m reading I’m feeling
These little bodies next to me.
I feel their joy, I feel their laughter,
At that silly dancing giraffe;
I feel their sadness at the bully
Or when someone’s mean;
I feel their wonder, I feel their bliss,
At the magic crayon and the wishing trees –
I feel it all, and hold it tight,
Finding it easy, somehow right
To give in to the, pretty please
Just one book more,
And then one more…more…

Sometimes, though,
the bodies keep writhing
And the little hands,
No matter the reaching,
can’t find the right books
For the feelings that they’re feeling
So we let them feel the feelings
All the hurt/sad/mad feelings
Until we lay together in a heap
And I find the book that needs reading
To help with all these tangled things
And I pour my soul
Into teaching
Into showing
These sweet little beings
How to find their own road
And their own paths to peace.

And when I sing the last song
And kiss the last kiss
I feel the tired joy,
(No matter how the night’s been)
The aching joy,
Of reading dreams
– And sharing dreams –
From a mother to her child.

last : Loving Joy | TBA : next

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  1. Paul
    September 9, 2016 at 4:53 am

    Very, very cool Deborah. I hadn’t even thought of kids’ books as representing their feelings – and books that needed to be read. Awesome concept and I am sure it is right on. Thank You.

    • September 9, 2016 at 10:22 am

      Thanks, Paul! It’s amazing how much books can help my kiddos deal with their emotions. Whether it’s a silly book to coax a laugh, a book about imaginations, and there’s a bunch that help with transitions (The Kissing Hand, for instance, is about a little raccoon’s first day at school). I love reading to them and rediscovering my own childhood, and I can almost feel my mom reading over my shoulder when I employ the silliest voices. Thanks! 🙂

  2. September 9, 2016 at 4:54 am

    That’s beautiful! ❤

  3. September 9, 2016 at 10:22 am

    Thank you, Mary! 🙂

  4. September 9, 2016 at 10:35 am

    Thank you so much for this opportunity, Deb, and for your continual support. I was so glad, when I came out of the room the night I wrote this poem (which had been a night of restlessness and many difficult feelings and many “But I want to do what *I* wants!”), that I had this idea of writing about something that gives me joy. Somehow, guiding the kids through the rough spots using books and reading as an outlet, well, it’s been like re-discovering a very old friend that you hadn’t forgotten, just misplaced. You brush the dust off “Green Eggs and Ham”, “The Giving Tree”, or “Oh, the Places You Will Go!”, and help them find the joy, taking time to enjoy the ride, and reach through to the memories of your own childhood joys. And, you discover new friends (like, “What Do You Do with an Idea?”, “Rude Cakes”, or “Jonathan James and the What If Monster”), make new memories, to take along with you. Thank you for giving the idea to pause and reflect on the joys of it! Love you to the moon and back, Dark Moon. ❤

    • September 9, 2016 at 2:13 pm

      There are some books I bought to read to my kids, and when they outgrew them, I passed them on, but sometimes, like after reading your poem, I wish I’d kept them. I kept only one, God Bless The Gargoyles, but there were some others I loved so much. Thanks for bringing back the memories.

    • September 17, 2016 at 3:26 pm

      Love you so much, Silver Star. Proud of you across the universe and back. ♥
      — DM

  5. September 9, 2016 at 12:02 pm

    🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

  6. September 9, 2016 at 7:51 pm

    🙂

  7. September 12, 2016 at 11:46 am

    ❤ ❤ ❤

  1. October 7, 2016 at 5:03 am

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