Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Jumping in the deep end

So I started the year with a powerful bang.  Embracing my online presence, answering Library Girl's questions, tweeting instead of just lurking, etc.  I even got a reply tweet from the Daring Librarian about my QR scavenger hunt.  I solidly karate chopped the beginning of 2014.

And then I disappeared.  Literally and virtually.  This Marbleless Librarian had an awesome collection of resources, an incredible assistant who was an even better friend, teachers that would collaborate or at least cooperate, a technology facilitator who was calm and intelligent, was flipping her instruction, friends on staff that could always be counted on, and had kids who loved to talk books and life with her.  Then I walked away at the end of January.  Professionally it was the hardest thing I had ever done.

North Carolina was getting snow when I was supposed to tell my faculty and kids.  If you are somewhere that regularly gets snow you cannot understand what a 1 inch snow can do in the south.  Everything stops.  I had delayed sharing my news because at the top of my list of things I don't do well is change.  It is painful.  Every kind look or hug sent me into tears when only 5 people knew.  I was trying to guard my heart from, well I don't know from what.  Hurt perhaps.  Turns out it was an effort in futility.  The worst is there are people, especially kids that I never got to share the news with and I know I hurt them.  Way too much hurt going around when I regularly go out of my way, even to my own detriment to not hurt others.

Don't worry - I didn't leave the profession.  This is not a political tirade.  I traded in my almost perfect job to have more time with my son by being much closer to home.  Every mother I have ever met said you will sacrifice for your child and I now get it.

After 17 years in middle school I am now in high school.  I traded my new school for a 1960s model.  A suburban population for a rural.  It is so very different.  Which brings me to why I am virtually back.  Rather than hiding and figuring this out on my own which is what I tend to do when I feel overwhelmed, I am reaching out.  Reaching out to you.  I cannot do this by myself and sometime this morning when I finally had a very cathartic cry from being overwhelmed I remembered you were right here.  Ready to help because that is what MCs do.

 The MC who retired tried to prepare me but knowing what is coming and living it are quite different. Last week at my total circulation was...5.  :(  It appears the former MC had been tired and when the common core rolled out she decided to let someone else figure out how to get teachers and students in the library.  Oh and for fun lets launch a 1:1 initiative as she retires and I arrive.  My husband caught me cursing a chromebook in my sleep last night.  I am dispelling the sexy librarian stereotype all on my own.

This afternoon I went back to Library Girl's 11 questions and had a conversation with my principal.   Here is the answer to question 8 - Turns out the 1:1 initiative is affecting his sleep too.  (maybe just not the same way) Library Girl and Doug Johnson are doing great research that should help me get a handle on those chromebooks.  My principal needs help getting all the faculty to buy in - especially the math department.  He wants the library to be the hub of the school and knows I am going to need some help.  So we are giving the media center a facelift.  Painters are coming and art and some comfy chairs.  But I need to get kids back.   Help me please.  What has worked for you?  Any epic fails I should avoid at all costs?  I can find many exemplary programs but I just need little starting pieces to make this seemingly overwhelming task start to shrink.