Tell us your story: A thank you note

This Tell Us Your Story edition is perfect for the week following Mother’s Day. Mrs RJ submitted this post. Thanks for sharing with us your earliest literacy memory!

“My earliest literacy memories are of my bedroom and my Mom. I remember my Mom reading me stories, and she made each trip to the grocery store extra special, buying me the “Little Golden Book” of my choice… my reward for a week of good behavior. When my Mom was working or in school, my Dad would read me bedtime stories — which I loved because he voiced each character differently, and that was lots of fun!

“When my Mom had to study, I would try to write and pretended to study with her. Not long after I showed an interest in writing, my Mom decided to redecorate my bedroom with all new bedding and curtains. I was so excited to have the big girl stuff, I couldn’t wait to learn the meaning of the numbers and letters that covered my new things. ABCs and 123s were everywhere! In addition to reading books and stories to me, she was helping me learn to put the words together and write the letters all by myself. Now, while she was studying, I was practicing my alphabet and numbers.

“I really enjoyed the time I spent with my parents, especially with my Mom, and in only two short years, I would be even more thankful for these memories, because she passed away in an accidental shooting that I witnessed.

“A life-long book-lover, I read at least five books a month, usually more. I love browsing bookstores, I could spend hours in the local Books-A-Million. and I have the library on speed-dial. Each time I open a book, I can’t help but think of my Mom and smile… because I know that she would be so very proud of me. Education, reading and books were very important to her… she instilled that love and respect for books in me when I was very young, for which I am forever thankful.

“Although I only had five short years with my Mom, she gave me a part of her that would sustain me through the difficult times I would face without her, the ability to read. Opening a book is like opening a door and escaping myself for a little while — I can travel, visit imaginary worlds or real places, learn about people from history or read fantastic stories about the future… the possibilities are limitless.

“I never had the opportunity to say ‘thank you’ to my Mom for opening the literacy door for me — being involved, trying to help others is my way of doing just that. Thank you for all you do to open that door for others — reading can change your life — it certainly saved mine!”