The following is a message from a dusty, neglected, previously-loved children’s book taking up room on your shelf.
“(Your name), it’s wonderful to see you again! It must have been years since you’ve opened me up and I’ve given your heart strings a good tug. Remember the days when you and (your child’s name) would sit with me in that comfy old armchair (see also: couch, bench, spot in the backyard) and we would have so much fun together, learning all about the world around us and how you both feel about the complexities of life?
And remember that one time you were reading me to (your child’s name) and had to discreetly wipe the tear from your cheek and coughed to cover the obvious wavering of your tone of voice, perhaps due to a deeper emotional connection you felt with my words and pictures, or perhaps thinking that this would be the last time you opened me up for quite some time?
Remember how (your child’s name) would choose me, out of all the other books on the shelf, even though you both have read me so frequently that all of my words were memorized by you both? Well, now that you’ve both outgrown me, it might be time for me to move on.
Spoiler alert for Toy Story 3, but maybe it’s time you end-of-Toy-Story-3’d me and passed me along to another new reader. And you know the best way to do that? Donate me to the Hamilton Public Library, which is now accepting donations of children’s books for their sale on Labor Day weekend. The Friends of the Library are welcoming books, DVDs, CDs, computer games, and puzzles for children and young adults in good condition now through August 24. I would love to be added to their sorting pile. Thank you for reading me and please consider donating me to this worthy cause.”