At 35, you might say that I have decided to become a Librarian a little later than most. I was always going to get there, it was just a matter of finding my way.

It is hard and it won’t be easy. But you are intelligent. Off you go into the rabbit hole.

Kathryn librarian

When I was 5, I ran away to the Library. For the sake of total honesty, I got as far as crossing the main road we lived on before mum caught up with me. Like Dorothy Gale and Jo March, I wanted adventure. Like Anne Shirley, I dreamt of splendid magical adventures albeit between the pages of wonderful, glorious books. (For those not so savvy with the stories that enamour young ladies, The Wizard of Oz, Little Women and Anne of Green Gables are all fabulous tales of self discovery). Like any tiny child, I’m sure I threw more than my fair share of tantrums over stories that ended before I was ready.

With a life long passion for reading I decided that books should be my future. I can’t remember a time when I didn’t love reading. My parents have always encouraged my interest in reading while adding a healthy dose of encouragement to socialise (the trials and tribulations of being an introvert).

For my Year 10 work experience I spent my time in a bookstore. Following that I volunteered at the Puckapunyal Army base library. I just loved when new books came in. So many were added to my “to be read” list.

My interest in books and discovering people’s stories influenced me to study Psychology as an undergrad. Questions like: How does this work? Why do people behave that way? How can we help and benefit people’s lives? How can we help people be informed about their conditions and keep track of new approaches and research?

Following uni, I felt lost. I had no drive. As a student I was fascinated by the Psychology subjects, but the careers available after graduation weren’t a good fit for me.

A feeling of disconnection lead to a many years of working a series of very different jobs in Bendigo and then Melbourne. All throughout each, I was lacking in career direction. While I enjoy my current job, the desire to work with books and stories burned within and lead me to study the Graduate Certificate in Library studies.

The new Bendigo Library

The new Bendigo Library

I don’t yet have a position in a library, they’re few and far between. In the meantime I’ll keep reading and working towards my goal to find my dream job. The job where I feel like I’m home. The one where I’m the calmest, happiest version of myself.

To reflect back on the two years of studying while working full time, there were times I felt like the white rabbit in Alice in Wonderland. The constant worry of not enough time weighed heavily. In fact, when I first started, I had concerns I couldn’t do it all. However, my eldest, ever practical sister said, “It will be hard work. It won’t be easy – if it was, then everyone would do it. You are intelligent and you have the time.”

These are words that I have often thought of while studying, and I would pass the same sage advice on to all new students, whatever their course. “It is hard and it won’t be easy. But you are intelligent. Off you go into the rabbit hole.”

From your childhood, what has stayed with you and influenced your life? Did you do work experience at school, are you now working in that same field?

About The Author

Kathryn grew up on and around Australian Army bases. She is fascinated by literature and film and her ideal job would involve both of these (plus copious amounts of coffee). Kathryn blogs at http://wheredidmylibrarygo.blogspot.com.au

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