Thursday, August 11, 2011

On Not Getting What You Don’t Ask For

A non-faculty member recently asked for a library carrel, in order to take an online class. I’ve been here for twenty-three years now, and we’ve almost never have support personnel ask for a study carrel, which is rather sad. It’s not that people don’t know the rooms are there – at one time, when we had a rash of newborns, we set one carrel aside for nursing mothers, and the room got brisk use.

Thinking about this reminded me of another event. Some years ago, I arranged a noon-hour tour for support staff around the science center—people from all sorts of departments, not just the library—we took a “dock walk” and learned to identify different types of fishing boats. The woman who coordinated the program told me that she had been arranging these tours for over ten years, and she had never given herself permission to go on one of the tours until our event.

It got me to wondering, how often in life do I “short” myself? Do I lack the imagination, courage or energy to carve out some time to stretch and grow some new skills? Or to have a new experience? Are there services I think are just for faculty/management because I have never asked? How often do I say, “I’m worth it” and mean it?

1 comment:

  1. This reminds me of ways that we sometimes censor ourselves or sell ourselves short. It particularly reminds me of a colleague years ago: when asked by a patron if she was a librarian, she replied, "No, I'm just one of the workers." Of course, what the patron really meant was "Can you answer my question."