Enter Here to Be and Find a Friend

Those words are carved into a lintel on Hackley’s campus, and they form the unofficial motto of the school.  Shortly before Winter Break, the community lost someone who absolutely embodied that sentiment: no matter the weather, how tired he was, or how difficult the task, Pedius was wreathed in smiles and filled with goodwill towards all.  He brightened the day of everyone.  And he will be missed greatly.

Last week, Will Manley wrote about Resolutions or Reconciliations:

Over the course of a year our personal relationships can get tangled up in negative feelings of anger, jealousy, bitterness, dislike, annoyance, and even hatred.   What  better way is there to start a clean slate every year than to seek out people with whom we are having problems and try mightily to get those problems fixed.  Family members, friends, patrons, supervisors, or co-workers…it makes no difference, but the key is to take the initiative and offer forgiveness, apologies, or both.

Personally, I’ve had great success with New Year’s reconciliations.  Life is a long, tough, and winding journey.  Over the course of a year we put rocks into our backpacks with bitterness, jealousy, anger, and dislike towards others.  By the end of the year that backpack can get pretty heavy.  Give yourself a break, get rid of those rocks.

Invite the person you’re having problems with to tea, coffee, or lunch and talk it out.  If he/she won’t go, at least you can feel better about yourself.  You’ve done the right thing, and poof…that rock no longer burdens you.  More often than not, however, things do get worked out , and then the world becomes a brighter place.

To honor Pedius’ memory, my goal for 2011 is to reconcile, or somehow make peace with, those in my professional and personal life that have contributed those rocks to my backpack.   It means not getting overly agitated by those that insist that this is my year to be fierce, or that I need to stop making videos, or otherwise issuing mandates and prescriptions for what constitutes good librarian practice.  As Joan Frye Williams said, do what works for your library, your school.  Don’t stop learning and growing – don’t get into a professional rut, but don’t feel you need to do everything, or be everything.

My resolution for 2011?  Not to should myself, and not to pick up any more rocks.

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