That’s It, This Year Is All About Reclaiming My Childhood

thats it this year is all about reclaiming my childhood

It’s only May and I’ve already found what this year is all about. And it’s all thanks to books! Seriously, could it have been any other way? I’ve been a book lover since before I could read (according to my mom. I have no memory of “reading” to myself at a year old), so it only makes sense that it’s been a bunch of books that has made me nostalgic for my childhood days.

I’m in my mid-thirties, married, a mother of two, a dutiful servant to one cat, and eternally frustrated with my Kindle. Childhood was a long time ago. Or was it? Once upon a time, I was going to be a child psychologist. I may be no Freudian, but I do know the importance of childhood and the groundwork that’s laid during those formative years. Really, just think of all those adult characters who have been scarred by their childhood experiences and still carry them around. More importantly for me, as the mother of two children under the age of ten, I need to remember my own childhood and what I was like, the things I was doing, what I needed from my own parents. I use that knowledge and experience to help me make better decisions with my kids, so I’m reliving pieces of my childhood every day. But it’s always nice when books can help out now and then. As this year seems to be intent on doing.

It started with Nancy Drew. I wish I still had my Baby-Sitters Little Sister books by Ann M. Martin because I think my daughter would really love those. But I didn’t think I was going to have kids, so donated both the Little Sitter and Baby-Sitters books a long time ago. So this story has to start with Nancy Drew because I have all but one book still.

A couple of Christmases ago, my husband got me a reading light because I didn’t know what else to ask for. I used it a few times last year, but found it more convenient to use my Kindle. Until it started to slowly lose its mind (I exaggerate, but I swear that thing decides what it’s going to do on its own more often than not). At the same time, since I read to my daughter at night and had been reading an Orbit ARC, my daughter decided she really liked spending a few minutes every night playing with the light and shadows created by the reading light. I haven’t run out of physical books to read, but I’m not really interested in reading what I have left, so I decided to read one of my children’s books to her. She picked mystery, and so I picked a favorite Nancy Drew title. We’re on our third and, unless I can get to the bookstore, oh, today (which I don’t have time for), we’ll be going on to a fourth Nancy Drew book.

It’s been a ton of fun reading Nancy to my daughter. But it hit especially hard when I was reading The Wishing Game by Meg Shaffer at the same time (set to be published May 30th). That one is a beautiful, magical book about childhood books and the magic and nostalgia that comes with it when you’re an adult. In it, the main character is an adult, but has recently learned the author of her favorite childhood books has finally written another installment, and one lucky winner will receive the sole copy. So she joins three other adults who had been children who adored the books in a race for the book because, if she can get it, she’ll be able to adopt the little boy she’s grown attached to. It’s sweet and gorgeous and made me cry almost every time I picked it up, both because the relationship between this prospective mother and son is so lovely and because it made me feel like a child again, snuggling up with a favorite book.

For a couple of weeks, I thought that was it. I was moving on from my childhood, but still enjoying reading Nancy Drew books to my daughter. And then I was perusing NetGalley and saw cartoonish drawings of characters I remembered watching on TV with my mom when I was a teen. Of course I had to take a closer look, and quickly learned they were who I thought they were and I was so happy when I was approved for Chevrons Locked: The Unofficial Unauthorized History of Stargate SG-1, The First 25 Years by Edward Gross. I spent all of my high school years watching Stargate SG-1 with my mom, so it holds some really special childhood memories for me. I remember sitting on the couch with my homework spread around and on my lap while my mom and I watched and laughed. I was way more attached to spending time with my mom than socializing with friends, so this show has a really special place in my heart. I’d also say it’s the thing that got me interested in reading science fiction in the first place. So it’s been really lovely to read this book, especially since it has an episode guide and I love recalling all those memories and feelings.

But it’s not just new books that are sparking this nostalgic feeling. It’s my old books, too. I still kept a few childhood favorites. Just…not a lot. Summer is quickly approaching, and reading is always a big part of the summer for my children. My idea, not theirs. My son is going into 4th Grade, but tests at the end of 2nd Grade indicated he was already reading at a 4th Grade level, so I’ve been struggling to find books that are challenging enough to keep his attention while being mindful of his maturity level. We did find a series for him, but, even then, he’s not really engaged. So I’ve been looking at my shelves, reflecting on the books from my childhood that I still have, and wishing I hadn’t read so much darn fantasy because this child has zero interest in fantasy. For now. I hope to change that.

Anyways, between my husband and I, we have a few options. As the school year ends, I plan on having him sample the limited variety of children’s books on our shelves to see what’s too easy and too challenging so I have a better idea of what to look for. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t interested to see if a childhood favorite might become something he’s interested in.

As for my daughter, she loves books, but isn’t the most confident reader, sometimes getting stuck on words she can’t sound out or just making up what the word says when she is feeling confident and playful. But I have a childhood favorite called Miss Rumphius that I’ve been dying to pass on to her, so I think I’ll extend this nostalgic feeling into the summer and we’ll tackle this book together.

And we’ll see if the rest of the year holds more nostalgia for me. Either this year is just that year, or I’m just getting old.

7 thoughts on “That’s It, This Year Is All About Reclaiming My Childhood

  1. Oh Stargate. I have memories from that one also. I watched the first one in German just after getting satellite TV for the first time. I think I have all the DVDs in my cellar, waiting for a reboot to happen. Such a pity that the show is gone…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Definitely a pity. It was such a fantastic show. I’d love to see it come back one day. I’d at least like to see it be rerun one day.


  2. What a fun way to walk down memory lane! I didn’t end up watching Stargate until after I was married and my husband introduced me to it, but I love it too. It’s not that you’re getting old, it’s that you have great memories to share with your kids 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I like that thought! As they get older, they’ve been getting more curious about my childhood, so it’s really nice to be able to share with them, and remind them I was a kid once, too. Stargate was such a fun show; I’m looking forward to introducing it to my kids when they’re older. It’s a fun show to share with someone you love.

      Liked by 1 person

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