Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Farewell - Head Held High

On my last day at FCL, I can barely believe that Annabelle is just two months away from turning the “Big #1.” The past year has been full of challenges and I am happy to say the good days have outnumbered the bad. In facing the challenges of being a full-time workin’ mamma I actually found myself becoming more focused and therefore more productive in my work as a librarian. This success, however, was not wrought solely by me – I never could have made it through the last year without the love of my sweetheart Josh, and the support from all my coworkers. The magnitude of FCL staff’s generosity is beyond words.

Over the last year, any time I needed a pep talk at work I would remind myself that we are all here because of our mothers (not to mention that according to the U.S Department of Labor, working moms make up just over 20% of the entire American workforce!) and the majority of my coworkers are also mothers. Recently, this got me thinking about the magnificent scope of FCL’s services and how much is provided to the community (and beyond!) with so little funds. Motherhood brings out many qualities that make stellar employees and leaders. Moms tend to be patient, flexible, understanding, and natural communicators, skilled at multitasking, planning, pushing back, setting limits, and dealing with chaos and shades of gray. And truly, any mom who has convinced a screaming child to get into her car seat, has learned the fine art of negotiation.

As I am just now finding my stride as a workin’ mama – I can finally keep track of my keys, leave the house by 8:15am, find time at work to pump while managing my workload, think about what to make for dinner, meet deadlines, all on 4 to 5 hours of sleep – I feel empowered (and a bit tired!). After giving birth naturally and excelling in my career I feel blessed to have experienced moments of clarity and deep happiness. In many regards, this job and family is what I have always wanted. And yet…….

All working parents pay a price. We either put less emphasis on our careers in favor of our children or we spend less time with our children in order to keep our careers charging ahead – it is a difficult balance. The decision to resign from the ‘one, the only Flathead County Library,’ was not easy. There is no doubt that becoming a parent changes you, and as I wrap up my ‘lasts’ here in the Flathead, I feel confident in my family’s future fearless! In many ways my new job of ‘stay-at-home-mom’ will be more challenging than anything the library world could have thrown at me. Yet, knowing this move is the right balance for my family has achieved a degree of peace that no Master’s of Library Science can touch.

To Everyone – Thank You – Shine On!


Brett Fisher - Techno Beat said...

We'll miss you, thanks for all that you've added to the Flathead County Library- we appreciate your hard work!

kc said...

We'll miss your professionalism, humour, and service ethic, Jocelyne. We've all learned from you and we wish you the best on this new adventure! Thank you for all the work you did to make the Flathead County Library a better place for our customers and for our staff.

lk said...

I hope you won't forget about us because we sure won't forget you! I am particularly going to miss your sense of calm and good humour in some very interesting situations. I hope you always can "keep the balance!"