A new year is just around the corner and we all know what that means – new year’s resolutions. As I sat down to think about what my professional development new year’s resolutions would be, so many different ideas came to mind – find a new blog to follow, attend one session at midwinter that I wouldn’t normally attend, listen to a webinar from outside of the library profession. As I was listing away in crazed Leslie Knope-fashion, a question from a blog post that a mentor shared passed through my mind and gave me pause. The question was from Bernadette Jiwa’s “The Story of Telling” monthly blog update and goes as follows:
“From the time my son Kieran was ten, he told everyone who asked that he wanted to be a LEGO designer when he grew up. Some people tried to temper his enthusiasm, not because they were unkind, but to alleviate his disappointment in advance. A lot of people laughed at him. The odds were against him. His chances were slim. But Kieran just kept saying (and more importantly believing), somebody’s got to do it, why not me?
One of the reasons our stories don’t resonate or our ideas don’t fly is that deep down we don’t believe in them ourselves. We think it’s all been said and done before. We question who we are and what right we have to say what we’re saying, do what we’re doing or dream what we’re dreaming. We stop asking—why not me?
The world needs more people like you. People with the conviction of their ideas and courage to share them. People who want to do work they are proud of and create the future we all want to see.”
When I think about ALSC and all of its members, I see strong, courageous individuals who not only ask this question, but live out its powerful implications every day. Is a booklist needed for students living in the aftermath of a community crisis? Why not me? Does a collection need to be reorganized so as to better meet the needs of the youth that it serves? Why not me? Does an award need to be renamed so as to uphold our core values of inclusiveness, integrity and respect, leadership, and responsiveness? Why not me? Why not us?
So this year, I’m going to put down my list, keep it simple, and never stop asking “why not me?”
This post addresses the following competency: VII. Professionalism and Professional Development
Skye Corey, Youth Services Librarian at Meridian Library District (ID), is writing this post for the Public Awareness Committee. She can be reached at email@example.com.