Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: State of Confusion (SC)
Gh and MHF, Thank you for your concern. I promise you I am NOT going to push myself to the point where I go backwards. I've always had a pretty high pain threshold and at this point, pain isn't really my major issue -- stamina is. And I can't build that by babying myself. I WILL ride again, and at my age, I can't expect to regain my normal life without fighting for it. Now that I'm breathing normally again, it's time to put those lungs to use and make sure they KEEP working.
My job has two very different sides. On the one hand, I do library administration and management. Out of 102 employees, 43 are mine. I supervise all the eight branches, the courier service, the bookmobile. Everything outside the main library is mine. That part is a piece of cake because I have absolutely wonderful employees. They keep functioning whether I'm there or not. My branch managers and the courier and bookmobile people are incredibly hardworking and dedicated. I can do what is necessary for this part at a desk with a computer and phone, and of course sitting in meetings...My LEAST favorite thing.
The other part of the job is the problem area and I'll need to rearrange & train some staff to help. I'm responsible for weeding the library and the branches. Just like your closet, some things have to go, if you want to get new clothes. We have new books coming in all the time, and other books becoming obsolete. Knowledge changes, tastes change. And we don't have ever-expanding shelves. Sometimes books get pulled because they're falling apart, sometimes because they're just plain obsolete (A science book that says "Someday man may walk on the moon" springs to mind, or Our Wonderful 48 States! LOL) Books that once were incredibly popular may not have checked out in the last 5 years. They're taking up space we need for books people want so they need to go (we can always get copies from elsewhere, if someone requests the title.) When books are really "hot" we buy or lease extra copies to keep up with demand. When the demand dies, we no longer need all those copies. So they get pulled. And there are always exceptions: classics, important literary titles, important authors, books that are part of a series. You can't just give employees a list and say pull these. You actually have to look at and consider each book. Do we need it? What is it's condition? How many copies do we have/need? Can it be replaced (is it still in print?) Lots and lots of hands-on decisions.
Part of this is clerical...running reports, removing them from the catalog, etc. Part of it is very, very, physical: pulling them from the shelf, packing them into boxes... When I go to a library to weed, I often pull off the shelf, pack and move 30-40 boxes of books in one day. They're heavy. I won't be doing that anymore.
We're also cutting back on our non-fiction because it's not used as much now that so many people have home computers. We're adding e-titles all the time because of the demand for them...and adding computers for the public. So one of the things I also do is re-arrange the interior of libraries.
I need to make sure that these functions go on... and I need to plan for continuity after I retire in Feb. I've got people to train, decisions to make.
The actual work (much of which I used to do because of staff shortages) will have to be done by others. There's no way I could be lifting and moving books like I used to (even if my Dr. would let me.)
SO, I'm going to try to go back. It may very well be just part days at first, but I think I'll get better faster if I push it (very carefully) than if I just hang around the house.
(Sorry, I didn't mean to write a book! LOL)
I'm not a complete idiot--there are parts missing!
What you have become is the price you paid to get what you used to want.