Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Moving a library is a pain in the side....

I am home today. Feeling very calm because I have a pain in my front left side. It came on suddenly last night while I was sitting on the couch. I think it is a spasm or a muscle strain of my oblique on that side. I did some new core abdominal exercises on Sunday. They were challenging, but I was fine until last night. Spending 4 hours yesterday moving books might have something to do with it.

Why is it that our bodies get these sudden pains at the oddest times? It wasn't during my work at the library...no, I was sitting on the couch and suddenly I got a stitch in my side. I had to stand up and try to shimmy the cramp away. It felt just like the side pains I'd get in elementary school when the PE coach would make us run laps around the school yard. Anyway, it hasn't gone away which has lead me to believe I just strained it. Hurts to breathe deep but I keep trying because that's what I do when I'm in pain....breathe deep. I took some ibuprofen and that has given some relief. Enough that I am able to enjoy being calm.

Moving a library is no small task. The library I volunteer with is moving into a nice new building in about a week and a half. In preparation for moving the collection, I was helping to get some books interfiled together. When the library reopens in it's new digs, the fiction books will all be together. Up to this point they have been shelved together but separated into different genres. Mystery, science fiction, fiction, romance, etc..... Getting all these books alphabetized and together is no small task. We have all these space constraints for packing. In order to alphabetize multiple sections together we need shelf space we do not have in the old building....so that meant moving the same books more than once. It also meant a need to hold three sets of alphabets in my head at the same time. A lot of this interfiling work will just have to take place in the new building end after the collection is moved.

This library is staffed, run, created by all volunteers. No one is paid. The cat who patrolled for mice was paid with cat food. The cat has gone into retirement - lucky cat. She won't be needed at the new building and the only thing cats are good at in moving is being under foot. All of us volunteers, with thankfully, some help from the larger community, will be moving this library. It's work......frazzling work.

At the same time as it is tiring, I am very excited to be a part of it all. I volunteered with this library because I love libraries. Even though my brain hurt yesterday from alphabetizing three sections together I love the puzzle of it. What I have discovered in working with this library, is that I really enjoy certain library jobs. I like the puzzle. I love getting information into a format or system that allows people to find it. I love helping patrons. For a creative dawdler it is a great environment to stimulate the brain.

Now, I just pray my body will hold up. I dread the work of moving....but my brain itches to get the puzzle back together.


  1. I knew that you volunteer a lot in the library, but I didn't realize that the library was ENTIRELY run by volunteers--wow!! That makes me feel really good--a community working to make sure the public library keeps going! And yes, I'm acquainted with those sudden pains that come out of nowhere--you have my sympathies! Feel better!!

  2. Karen, yes- it amazes me that we are all volunteers. My pain is better - thanks!