Reading a book used to be easy; the hard part was putting the book down.
I had time and I made time for books. At night in bed before going to sleep, weekend mornings before getting up, solitary mealtimes, my lunch hour, on the journey to and from work by bus, train or underground, while waiting in a queue at the bank, while waiting anywhere, free afternoons, hours and hours of free time I had as a child and teenager... I always found some time to read.
Then real life got in the way.
No, that's a lie. As I grew up, became busier, got more responsibilities taking up my time, I still found time to read books.
If I'm honest, I can't really blame it on becoming a mum. Of course, I have less time to myself, but there are still little corners of my life where I can sneak in some reading time.
What really happened was - you know it - social media and blogging.
Actually, blogging first. Without blogging, social media wouldn't be so interesting or take up so much of my time. Lately the only things I've read have been other blogs and when I'm not reading, I'm writing posts or comments, replying to comments, editing photos for posts or "interacting" on Twitter or Instagram. And I don't even do much of any of that, as my meager following will attest. I don't have enough time!
So how can I find time to read a book on top of all that?
That is the question and the dilemma. Because I love books, I miss reading them and I can feel my world shrinking from the lack of them, even as it's expanding in other ways.
I'm not setting a good example for my daughter, either. The habit of reading for pleasure is usually something children learn from the people around them. And, let's face it, it's down to me; she's not likely to learn it from my husband (not a big reader). Seeing me reading in my free time, enjoying reading, will help her to develop a love of reading in the future.
This isn't the easiest task in a country which doesn't have much of a reading culture. In Mexico, reading as a hobby isn't nearly as common as it is in the UK; most people just don't read books. There aren't as many book shops and books are relatively expensive.
All my books are in a box, still unpacked from the move. I'm looking forward to unpacking them, when we have some shelves to put them on, and rediscovering them. I also have several unread books in there, waiting for me to make time for them.
And here I am now, writing a post about reading books when I could be... actually reading a book.