This Week

Posted from other social media:

Baby Z is returning to school today, after a year of not attending in person. We have been spending so much time together. And now: taking these photos and walking her to class, my heart doesn’t know what to do. She’s probably fine. I don’t know if I am.

Here’s what she earned her first day back. She does like Crazy Bread:

She seems to be getting the hang of school. Tomorrow is Friday, and we’re all ready for the weekend.

***

The Asian hate crimes committed in the past year and finally being brought to light by the mass shooting in Atlanta has really made me sick to my stomach. I’ve been trying to process all of this in the last few months, and thoughts swirl and feelings jumble, and I don’t know what to make of it.

But friends and family have been supportive. They’ve reached out and checked in, and I’m so grateful.

I came across this Instagram post by Chanel Miller. So eloquent. Concise. Expresses much of what has been on my mind.

I hope everyone out there is safe and feels loved. The hate is unbearable.

One of Those Situations Where I Absolutely Kill It

A nice young man leads me behind the checkout desk toward the director’s office. I see she’s on the phone, but she waves me in and motions for me to sit down.

I try to tune out her conversation, but I can’t help internalizing an offer to help the person on the other end of the line. At the same time I try to take in details of her office without looking nosy.

She has books, of course. She has big plants. I like that.

She wears an olive green dress. I wear an olive green skirt. I wear brown shoes. She wears brown shoes and brown stockings. Fun coincidence, but I think it’s one of those unspoken connections.

She introduces herself and describes the interview process. She explains what the questions entail and asks if I’m ready to begin. I rub my hands together and say let’s go.

I sort of don’t believe that I rubbed my hands together. But it happened.

She starts out with questions like what do I do for fun, what role do librarians play today, what are my passions.

She asks about my leadership and  teamwork experience. What qualities make a good leader? A good team member?

She asks why I want to pursue a master’s degree in library science.

I elaborate on all the answers to these questions.

My armpits give away my nervousness and adrenaline levels. Thanks a lot, armpits.

As I give examples in my answers and talk in paragraphs, which is something I generally don’t do in everyday conversation because most of the time I talk in sound bites and snide remarks, she nods and gives affirming feedback. This encourages me. I feel I could keep talking.

Throughout our conversation, I catch how her eyes agree with my answers and the momentum I gain carries me through to the end.

She makes me feel as if I’m already a librarian.

We make good time. She says I’m doing a terrific job. She wraps up the interview and asks if I have any questions for her. I listen to her describe the timeline for the different tracks within the program. She talks about getting me involved in networking and conferences and I wonder if I should have worn a darker shirt. A black one, because I can’t stop sweating. The anxiety about sweating makes more sweat. We know how it works.

She said that I seemed really in tune with what the program is about, and that she would strongly or highly recommend me. She says that I seem a perfect fit, and I say it feels pretty good. She’s pleased.

Then I ask her what her favorite part of her career has been.

This is a nice way to end an interview for me because I get to hear someone talk about a career she loves. In this particular situation, we both finish confidently.

Thanks to those who answered polls about whether I should pursue an MLS or an MFA (though the MFA may still be in the future) and about times where I have been a good team member. All of you were extremely helpful.

Thanks to those who have supported me in whatever decisions I make even though it takes me years to make up my mind.

Thanks also to Reilly for taking the day off to drive and give moral support, as well as setting off the alarm at the library where I interviewed by bringing a book from a different library. That was great.

Now, it’s just a matter of waiting to see if I get in. I don’t mind waiting.

Seven Years Ago

It was snowing. A lot. The missionaries came to help us move furniture into our Lower East Side 4th-floor walkup. Stanton Street. Loved it.

It snowed the rest of the night. A two-foot drift settled upon the streets and top-hatted the cars.

My lower back and quadriceps were very sore the next day.

I wandered the city. Instantly fell in love.

Found adventure everywhere.

Found every adventure.

Eventually found friends.

Great ones.

The kind I didn’t think I’d ever be able to make again since high school.

And opened my heart.

Years passed.

Then I had to leave.

Somewhere else now.

And I have to do it again.

Build.

How else am I going to survive?

How else am I going to be happy?