While watching the lecture on “Reflective Practice”, I myself began to think back to the time in which I realized being a librarian was the career path I wanted to take. If I am completely honest, I never planned to go into the library profession. All throughout my undergraduate career, I focused on taking pre-law courses and studied feverishly for the LSATs in the last year of my undergrad. I recall being accepted into law school and attending orientation thinking that I have accomplished all that I have ever wanted and was ready to complete my life’s work as an attorney. However, after spending two years in law school, I soon realized that this path was not as fulfilling as I had always imagined and soon learned that the law is not always about justice for all. I contemplated my life’s decisions and took a leave of absence from law school while I figured out what exactly I wanted to do with my life.
I took a part-time position as an Extra Help librarian at my local public library as a way to make ends meet. What began as a job soon became a passion for me. Within the library, I felt as though I was able to make a direct impact on the communities that are often marginalized in society. The librarians I spoke with were compassionate and empathetic when they discussed their career and I so wanted to have this sort of love for what I do as well. After a year, I applied for my current job as a solo Library Associate and have grown into my position as a branch lead, supervisor of multiple pages, and overall reference guide to all patrons. I cannot express the joy I have gotten from working within a small rural community and seeing the impact the library makes in their lives. I am blessed to wake up in the morning and feel a sense of joy and excitement when I come to work. From planning Teen Nights to leading English Conversation Groups, I have met people from all walks of life and can connect with each individual on some level.
As Dr. Stephens mentions in his book, Wholehearted Librarianship, “We are the heart of our communities, and that only works because of what the people who run libraries give of themselves” (p.41). This statement truly resonates with me as I reflect on my role as a solo Library Associate and as one of the few Spanish-speaking employees within Yolo County Library system. I take pride in representing the agricultural community and all the farmworkers who are indeed essential workers. I have seen some of my previous classmates from law school graduate and work as corporate attorneys, however I do not despise or envy them because I know what I have is invaluable. The career of librarianship takes heart and I am willing to give my heart to my community as long as they need my help.
Stephens, M. (2019). “Talk About Compassion”. Wholehearted Librarianship. Retrieved from: https://287.hyperlib.sjsu.edu/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/StephensWholeheartedDozer.pdf