Who doesn't love to snuggle up in your favorite chair, with a glass of wine or tea, and dive head first into an alternate reality? No. I am not talking about mind altering drugs being slipped into your drink. I am talking about a book. Yes, a book. One of the oldest forms of media that has withstood the test of time. We just don't read a book. We visualize it like a movie being created in our minds with each sentence read. We savor it, feel the emotions of the characters, laugh, cry, hope, and fear along as the story unfolds before our very eyes. It is a very nice, little, and inexpensive escape from reality. Especially for people like me who hardly can afford putting food on the table let alone a sweet island vacation. But when does this little escape become more and more like a permanent leave of absence from reality of our ordinary lives? Is there such a line to be crossed? If so, is it a very fine line or does it depend on your personality or the reality of your own life?
Very interesting questions that really no one can answer but yourself. There have been plenty of days that I have found myself escaping more and more into my reading and writing passions. Sometimes it gets to the point that I feel I have blurred the boundaries between reality and fiction. Other times I prefer to being in this alternate universe than my actual own life. Let's face it, our lives are so much more awesome and exciting in our heads. It becomes easy to want to be in your head more when your life there is more adventurous, thrilling, and pleasurable. But I do believe there is a line that needs to be made aware of. The more you become engulfed with a different reality the more you disconnect from the actual reality your are living. That in turns leaves feelings of not only distance, but sadness, anxiety, and loneliness. And if we spend so much of our time in a made up reality how can we ever turn our actual reality into something more pleasurable to ourselves?
During hardships, like the Great Depression, do you know what activities became prominent? Of course, the obvious answer is suicide and getting drunk but besides that do you know? Library book rentals. That's right. People wanted and needed an escape from the harsh reality they were living in. But that escape from reality can be both a life vest and an anchor. Which bring us back to the to the one sure and redundant answer...moderation. Everything needs to be done in moderation such as drinking, partying, eating, exercise, and yes even reading. But don't let that discourage your passion for reading. It is a timeless form of entertainment that is to be enjoyed. Just be sure to put some effort to bringing joy in your ACTUAL lives.