Saturday, October 24, 2009

Thank You

Domino depends on me for everything: food, water, shelter, and health care. Everything he receives comes from me. I believe that because I have committed to having Domino, I must see to the very best of his welfare. In the book of Genesis, we are instructed to have "dominion" over the animals. To me, this means we are to be good stewards of and for the animals. This includes little Domino! Rest assured, he receives only the very best from me!

While Domino cannot speak words of thanks, I receive gestures of thanks in the form of a loving, affectionate animal -- and more often with licks of love and gratitude. Oh, yes! It's very clear to me that Domino is expressing gratitude.

Likewise, everything I have, everything I will ever have, comes from God. I depend on Him for everything I need, and He faithfully supplies my every need. Rest assured, I receive only the very best from Him!

A Moment of Wonder

Although I do not take for granted the life I have, I admit I am occasionally remiss for not giving enough thanks to God. I am good at asking for things, but am I as good at returning thanks? He takes care of all my needs, and provides for me on a daily basis. May I be more mindful of the blessings He has bestowed upon me.

Meditate on: Gratitude

Scripture: Psalm 92:1

"It is a good thing to give thanks unto the LORD."

Friday, October 23, 2009

A Morning in the Life of a School Librarian...


TGIF, and all that stuff. But that doesn't stop the insanity from invading my work world -- the world of being a school librarian. It does help, however, to know it will end at 4:00 p.m. this afternoon. Then I will celebrate TGIF. At the closest Happy Hour bar I can find.

I report to work every morning around 7:25 a.m. My start time is 7:30 a.m., but I use that 5 minutes to get ready for the day: turn on the laminating machine, put the three newspapers on the shelf, and boot up the OPAC. Then I sit down and log on to my PC -- which is a misnomer, because, for sure, there is NOTHING personal about it. But that's another blog...


From 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. on this day in history, I have had these questions -- or requests -- asked/made of me. And I am NOT making up any of it, either. After all, I AM an information specialist. My master's degree in science in library and information sciences (36 hours of coursework) helps me to be able to answer these questions.

* Do you have a glue stick?

* I need a pair of scissors. (Not even phrased as an interrogative.)

* Do you have any poster board? (I am beginning to pick up on the fact that a class project is due TODAY!)

* Would you like to help sell water for the Sophomore class? It's a fundraising activity.

* The photocopier is jammed.

* The corollary to the above: The photocopier is out of paper.

* Where is the Lost & Found? (Yes, the Library has the privilege of sponsoring the L&F, which is not always just books, backpacks, and textbooks -- IF you know what I mean...)

* Has anyone turned in a history book? (See above question.)

* Where does the Homecoming Dance start tomorrow night? (At least it's an information-based question.)

* What time is it? (#$&$#!&% !!!)

* A corollary to the above questions: What time does this period end?
(My answer to this is always: "The same time it ended yesterday, the day before, and every other day this school year." The student then just states at me, surely thinking, "Ms. Scholl has gone nuts. She needs a man in her life. "

* Has Mrs. Garcia left my Spanish test up here for me to take?

* Ms. Scholl, I know this is not Library-related, but do you have change for a $10.00 bill? (At least the patron was honest in that it was not, indeed, a Library-related question. Also, the student does not realize what librarians earn, and therefore do not even carry bills in that large of a denomination.)

* Have you seen _______? (Fill in the blank with name for any of our 470 students and/or 50 faculty/staff.)

* When do report cards come out? (I don't even DO report cards.)

* When will Mrs. Neill be back? (She is the college counselor who offices in the corner office of the Library. I am also her "receptionist" since my area is the first thing you see when you enter the Library.)

* Ms. Scholl? Would you please wipe my behind?

These questions were seriously asked this morning in a two-hour period while I was trying to do REAL library work. (big sigh) OK. OK. Maybe not the last question, but only because students seldom use the word "please" for their whiny questions.

Oh, for a truly library-related question such as, "In which database could I find information on _______?" (Fill in the blank with any academic/intellectual topic of your choice.)

A la Glen Campbell..."Oh, such as the dreams of the every day Librarian..."

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Certain Things...

There are certain things I can no longer do. Let me rephrase that. There are things I no longer want to do. Some of these things include listening to certain pieces of music, going to certain places, and being with certain people.

Allow me to explain

I married my college sweetheart in May of 1980. We met at Southwestern University where we were both music majors and, as such, had many classes in common. We studied music literature, music history, and music theory together. We even took a piano ensemble class together and frequently played four-handed music together. One such piece was a Brahms Hungarian Dance.

Listening, as I often do, to WRR Classical 101.1, this morning I heard that same Brahms piece. In a “flash back” moment, I was abruptly snatched from the present, and hurled back in time when Tim and I played this composition in that piano class. Then, almost as suddenly, I was in a “fast forward moment”, remembering when we reprised that same piece for a concert we were doing together – many years since first learning the music in that piano ensemble class.

The memory was fresh – as if it were yesterday. As lovely as the piece was then and is now, I slammed my hand against the on-off button of the radio and drove the rest of the way to work in silence.


This year – 2009 – marks my 30th reunion from Southwestern. I have several friends who graduated with me. Though Tim did not graduate that year (he was a year behind me in school), he was an inseparable, woven-into-the-very-fabric-of-my-body part of my time at SU. The thought, however, of going back without him is unthinkable, unspeakable, and undoable to me. There are too many tender memories in the buildings, the halls, in the nooks and crannies of the Fine Arts Building, in the campus itself for me to be able to go back without tears. Not only would the memories of us as students haunt me, but also of the times we attended other reunions (our 10th), and of the times we drove through campus -- making that slight detour off of I-35 – as we drove down the interstate. It’s too sensitive. It’s too fragile. I won’t be attending my 30th reunion.

During our life together, we met and made many friends – lifetime friends – or so I thought. But when death comes, it doesn’t just take your beloved. It can also take or change other relationships. Suddenly you go from a couple to a single. The dynamics in relationships change. One such relationship has succumbed to this fate.

While I am happy for this couple, for their togetherness, and the fact that they have a strong and vital marriage, because there are so many memories of us/them, it’s somewhat painful to be with them. I know they sense it, too, but we’ve never spoken of it aloud. It’s too sensitive. It’s too fragile. The relationship is not exactly lost, but it has changed, altered, shifted. In short, there’s a big hole. That hole is Tim.

In a loftier and truer sense, however, the relationship IS lost. You can never have exactly what you had before; therefore it is lost.

“Time stops for no man,” is true, especially in the grieving process. Death comes. You grieve – hopefully in a healthy way and you “get better”, whatever that means – but when you finally drag your head up from your grief, time has marched along and you are several years, maybe more, behind everyone else. Some things have changed. You no longer look at the things the same. You can’t. Music, places, people are different and you must start to redefine yourself by your current set of circumstances.

It takes time. It’s not fun to have to “re-compose” one's self. It’s hard. It’s painful. It’s scary. It’s lonely. Yet, it starts to happen. Slowly, maybe. Or perhaps in larger spurts. But it does come – if you’re lucky, if you have enough prayers said on your behalf, if the planets all line up, and if the stars are in your favor.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Birthday Wishes

The Birthday Fairy has just informed me that I have three wishes for my birthday. Here's what I am wishing...
1. Peace on earth
2. A cure for all kinds of cancer (does that count for more than one wish?!?)
3. Jesus at my breakfast/lunch/dinner table

What are your Birthday Wishes?

Birthday Month

"Happy birthday to me, happy birthday to me..."

Yes, this is my birth month. October 26, to be exact. I'll be 52 a week from today. I was asked by a co-worker today how I would celebrate it. Actually, I've not thought of anything yet. It's not like it's a "special number". The special number was two years. On my 50th birthday, I was playing for the funeral of a dear friend's mother. Doesn't seem possible that Miss Norma has been gone two years...

Tim's birthday was last Wednesday, October 14. He, too, would have been 52. A friend knew this to be Tim's birthday and asked me, "How are you going to handle it?"

"Same as I've handled it for five years." But it seems to be different every year -- the feeling of loss. That feeling ebbs and flows -- just as life does. Another friend simply emailed me on Tim's birthday and wrote six words: "With sweet thoughts of Tim today...". Very meaningful. Thank you, Brenda.

It's not that I'm against celebrating, I just don't think I want to do anything very special. Besides, it falls on a Monday, and I'm not usually up for anything "big" on a work night. At my age and stage of life, if I want anything, I will have to arrange it. Seems like too much work.

Actually, what I'd like to do is to plant pansies in my garden. Miniature pansies. The purple and yellow variety. Pansies are the "flower of thoughtful reflection". What a lovely thought. I like the idea of planting pansies in October and thoughtfully remembering my friends who also have birthdays in October -- and indeed, all of my friends. Maybe Saturday would be a good day for that...

To all my October Birthday Buddies: Mom, Tim (who are now both deceased), Sarah, Sandy, Ben Scholl, Ben C., my friends at work, James, Mary Beth, Ryan, Grant, Sherri, and Sharon ~ ~ ~ "Birthday Blessings!"