I am a self-confessed book worm, but I have to admit that reading wasn’t my first love. I actually loathed reading when I was younger. We had a list of books to read for summer ever since grade school, but I never finished a book. I always felt sleepy and bored when I start reading. But as they say, “Everyone’s a nerd. You just haven’t found the perfect book yet.”
I started to enjoy reading eight years ago. I was going through some problems at that time, and I wasn’t exactly in the best shape to talk or meet up with anyone, so I decided to try reading again. I was used to reading books by Jodi Picoult or Mitch Albom, but then I thought maybe I should try reading some popular books for my age group.
The first book I read at that time was Eleanor and Park, by Rainbow Rowell, and that book is the reason why I still love reading young adult novels to this day. I was really lucky, because the books that I read were always books that I really could relate to, like Jay Asher’s 13 Reasons Why, Ava Delaria’s Love Letters to the Dead, Andrew Smith’s Winger, and the amazing books of Susane Colasanti.
These books were my companions during the worst years of my life and these authors were like friends to me, giving me the lessons and advice I needed. It sounds crazy, but I believe that I’ve never read a book by accident. It was always timely. I don’t read reviews or plot summaries beforehand, so I normally don’t have any idea what it is about until I read it.
I have always felt like these books were my comfort. Now, I regret every single day of my life that I didn’t spend reading. Reading has given me a world I can run to whenever my life feels chaotic and messy. I call this my well-ordered universe, an idea I got from the book, Since You’ve Been Gone, by Morgan Matson.
Whenever I feel down, confused, or mad, my first impulse is to grab a book or open my i-Book application. Reading is the first thing I do when I wake up in the morning, taking me away from my messy life, and it is the last thing I do before I go to bed. It has served as a reminder that life could be different for me. Or that maybe in a parallel universe, life is a lot better for me.
Reading has made me love places I have never been. It has made me see that there is a world out there that I could belong to. Papertowns and Looking for Alaska, by John Green, have both made me realize that I’m not the only one feeling lost in this world. When I read, I feel like someone else understands me. Someone else feels the same way as I do. It reminds me that I am not alone in this burden I am carrying.
Reading keeps me going. It keeps my heart alive. It makes me realize that someday I will find someone who will accept me despite all the things I am going through. Reading has given me a sense of excitement. It has given me an inner strength and courage that no other person has given me. It has given me something to believe in.
There is nothing in this universe I love doing more than reading. Reading has kept me alive in so many ways. I have embraced being called a nerd, because I am a nerd, and I am proud to be a nerd. I don’t think I would be who I am right now if I wasn’t a nerd.
And I don’t care how many other universes there are, because in each one of those, I would still choose to be a nerd.