Thursday, November 10, 2011

Reading Room

"A room without books is like a body without a soul."  So said Cicero.

It could be said that my and Spencer's relationship is based on a book. Well...books (plural), actually.

I moved many times as a single lady. Many. Times. In ten years, I lived in seven apartments. Four in Dallas, two in LA, and one in DC. Moving for me means boxes and boxes of books to be hauled down the stairs...only to have to be hauled back up the stairs again at my new place (because I almost always live on the third floor somehow).

Amidst one of my many moves as I was boxing up my books yet again, I remember wondering aloud to my mom, "What if I end up with a boy who doesn't like books?"  She said she didn't think that was possible.

Spencer and I met three weeks after I arrived in DC in July 2009 and had gone out six or eight times before he moved to Australia that October. When he left, there was no arrangement, no understanding between us. But we kept in touch and would chat here and there--just small talk, mostly. And then! And then we had a conversation about Atlas Shrugged. He'd never read it, I told him he must. He bought the book and started reading it within the week. He loved it. He couldn't stop talking about it. And, for the first time, I started to think things could get serious. When he came home for the holidays he gave me a bracelet that had reminded him of the one Hank gave Dagny, and I gave him...another book: Shop Class as Soulcraft.

I hadn't yet read that one, but I wanted to, and I hoped he would want to. He did. He read it on the plane on his way back to Australia. And he loved it.

Before we were engaged, I'd given him two more books. He began reading every book I gave him almost the minute he had it in his hands. I'd never had a boy show so much interest in what I cared about. I wasn't even sure it was possible.

And now, a pattern has officially developed. A few weeks ago, when he arrived home from work, he surprised me with a book he'd picked up for me. The best part about this constant book exchange is the conversation it fuels. We talk and talk about what we are learning and about how our world views are being affected. And we are more connected because of it.

It seems my mom was right. It could never have been otherwise. Books have to be a significant part of my life with Spencer, else there would be no life with Spencer.

In every room a stack of books and in our bodies, souls.

1 comment:

danielle said...

the top four are personal favs -- awesome!