I don’t know if I have ever mentioned it, but when I’m not being a yarn dyeing diva or a new mom to Miss Emme, I am a branch librarian at the second largest branch of an urban library in Upstate New York. It is cheesy to say, but I have always loved libraries and remember my grandfather taking me to the local library when I was a child. He would walk me up to the third floor, the children’s floor and he would go hang out in the adult’s section to read the newspaper. When I was ready to go, I would tiptoe through the adult section and go sit (quietly) at his table while he finished reading. That was one quiet library!
When I graduated several years ago, I knew that I was either going to get a Ph.D, pursue a teaching career, or go to graduate school for information science. Working at a library seemed the most fun so that is the route I took!
The library where I work is relatively quiet, but it has a community center atmosphere which I actually love. There are tons of regulars who stop by the desk to catch-up or just chit chat. Before becoming the branch librarian, I was a part time youth services librarian, so I’ve sort of done a bit of everything. To say that I love to help people is also pretty cliche, but that is the truth.
One of the most rewarding moments for me is helping somebody who has previously dismissed themselves as “amateur” or “never going to figure this out” reaching that point of realization that yes, they can indeed do it. When somebody comes in with that attitude, I just remind them that we all were beginners at one point. One instance that come to mind are a gentleman who I helped build his resume, create an email address and to post his resume online to apply came in extremely happy just to thank me for my efforts because he had gotten a job. Clearly it was his own merits that got him the job, I just helped him figure out the tools he needed to show off those skills. Another of my favorites, is a senior gentleman who had gotten a Kindle for Christmas and didn’t know the first thing about it. Through a series of one-on-one teaching sessions, I showed him the ins and outs and before long he was quite proficient.
All of this brings me around to the fact that I’ve been living in my community for over 2 years and have only been to my local library once. It would have been easier to go if it was within the same library system where I worked, but alas, it is not because we are just over a county line. So today Emme and I took a trip to our local library and I must say it was rather nice. The collection is a decent size and they have a TON of romance paperbacks which are my guilty pleasure. (I always make sure to grab at least one “real” book to balance it out!) The staff was quite friendly and I enjoyed playing at being a library patron/customer. Once I get to know them all better, I’ll let them know that I am “one of them,” but for now, I’ll just being a mom with a baby picking out board books once a week.
I made myself stay away from the knitting books this trip because I didn’t have enough room to carry all of the books I likely would have checked out and Miss Emme was on the verge of a meltdown because she hadn’t gotten a good nap. Next time though!