Starting when I was in 5th grade, it was not unusual for me to stay up into the wee small hours of the morning reading.
I would get into my book and not be able to put it down. I would devour books. The summer after I graduated from college I did the same thing. One of my dear friends, M, sent me a bunch of mysteries and I bought others in the series.
This habit continued and was enabled by my first post-college job in a bookstore. (Sadly reading while working was frowned upon, but there was a generous discount.) I married a bookstore man so after I was out of the business he would feed my habit. (Hows that for enabling? lol)
To me there is nothing better than becoming engrossed in the story, getting to know the characters, and in a mystery, trying to solve the crime. I will say, if I do not like the protagonist, I find it difficult to read the book. I get tired of formulaic stories (if in a series the protagonist always ends up getting herself into danger, I get annoyed. A little common sense goes a long, long way with me.) and I am not into graphic gore, but if I can relate (or wish to relate) to the characters, I am hooked.
So last night I stayed up too late getting lost in Marybeth Whalen's book, She Makes It Look Easy, and I loved Ariel. It could be that I identified with her having 3 boys to my 5, it could be that she was a genuinely good person, but whatever the case I liked her. I enjoyed the plot too, because I can see how this can and does happen every single day. Most of all, I think Marybeth (is it too familiar to refer to the author that way, Mrs. Whalen sounds so formal?) did a great job of showing authentic life of a Christian wife and mother, not a caricature. Ariel isn't overly pious but she is faith-filled and I believed in her. I want to have coffee with her and chat, I want to laugh about smothering burnt toast in peanut butter and the things boys will do in packs.
As I was laying half asleep on the couch lamenting that my children only wish to sleep late Monday through Friday, I found myself thinking about the book and wishing, hoping, that she would make this into a series so I could get to know Ariel, her family, her friends and her neighbors better.
While I could have used a few more hours of sleep, this book brought me rest in other ways, much as I did all those years ago reading Nancy Drew as a preteen (because "tween" wasn't coined yet lol) or Diane Mott Davidson (still a favorite) in my early 20s.
Losing myself in a good story is a great way to relax and while I'm reading, if I'm reading the right things, I am able to come away focused, strengthened and renewed. So while I didn't get enough hours of sleep last night, I did get some rest.
I pray that you can find peace and rest in many different ways, in God and His word, in sleep and in other pastimes which can feed your mind and soul.