My manager knows I want to be a leader and has been steadily pushing me in that direction for the past two years. Aside from nominating me Arizona Library Association (AzLA) Emerging Leader (which I won), having me do a poster session at their annual conference last year and allowing me to try her position on for size (it’s too big!), she has also guided me into participating the AzLA Mentoring Program. I do not feel I know “everything;” but so close it’s scary. I have wanted to be mentored in the official capacity for a long time, but looking back I always have been guided in an unofficial capacity. So I shrugged and signed up because it sounded like fun and good way to meet new people.
Enter Mrs. H, my mentee. She lives “upstate.” She is incredibly bubbly and willing to learn. She is what I have been missing. Mrs. H is in her 40s with colorful tattoos, piercings, short hair dyed in rainbow hues, as well as the mother of two boys (one of whom is transgendered). Mrs. H is an articulate, people person, and so much fun to mentor! Gosh, if it were always this easy, I wish I signed up years ago. She reminds me so much of my friendships from high school and college, before I branched out into a more conservative professional town. Mrs. H is a great reminder to do more for the citizens and the fringe populations. I cannot recall the minimum commitment for the mentorship program, but I can already tell you Dear Readers, I’ve made a friend for life! If you ever have the opportunity to mentor someone or to be a mentee, in any capacity, I highly encourage you to take it on.