Ssh... Don't Tell Anyone, But...
Alice is reading a book.
I almost don't want to talk about it in case I put the mozz on it, but... She has been reading in bed every night for the last week or so, a chapter or two at a time. It's our old favourite, The 101 Dalmations, which I have read to the girls three or four times, so it is quite familiar. She says the words aren't jumping around as much as they used to; also that the old, yellowed paper makes reading easier, because the contrast between the white space and the print is less.
Last night she had a choice between staying up to watch TV, and going to bed and reading, and she went to bed with her book. Of course, being Alice, she won't tolerate any hint of coercion. I can't tell her to go to bed and read; I can't talk about it to other people (so keep it under your hat, and please don't tell her I told you!) But at ten and a half, maybe we're turning a corner. Maybe.
All I have ever wanted for Alice is that she might be able to partake in the enormous pleasure of curling up with a book, and it has broken my heart that she hasn't been able to do that. Cross fingers - it might be here at last. The sight of her sitting in bed, absorbed in her book, makes my heart flutter with joy. And now all I can think about is, what can I give her next?