Tuesday, November 27, 2007


I've been thinking about my New Year's resolution, even though I don't typically torture myself with those rarely actualized self-promises that ultimately leave me feeling guilty and deflated and rife with self-loathing. But this year, something has to change.

My family is at a crossroads, faced with a difficult truth that comes into focus a bit more sharply every day: It is time to stir some very stagnant waters, specifically financial waters and the waters of bodily health. Our lives simply cannot move forward successfully unless belts tighten in more ways than one. But you know how that is, complacency and denial can place a death grip on the will. That is where we are now, complacently denying the need to DO SOMETHING about what's unhealthy in our lives.

This all boils down to my seemingly very simple New Year's resolution: to return my library books on time in 2008.

See, I've thought about this a good bit lately, and my inability to follow through on the simple task of returning library books represents all the other ways I let things slide in my life. This sloppiness is more than procrastination; there is something psychological behind my refusal to complete certain tasks, some mental block, some imp of the perverse waiting to be defeated.

I have trouble with the concept of "just doing it," which is all any life change requires, really. No need to wring hands and suffer. Just make the changes. Just get in the car and return the library books. There's even book drop parking for heck's sake.

But I need to start small. I need to show myself that I can change a bad habit, even if it's a relatively insignificant one, and prove to myself that change isn't as complicated as I imagine it to be. It's simple, really. Write the due date down. Get the books together on or before that date. Take them to the library. Put them in the slot.

The rest will trickle down, I hope. It really must. We're past due on more than library books, and the fines will only increase the longer we wait.


L'oiseau said...

I would say that's definitely a good place to start. Otherwise you'll turn out like me and not be able to show your face in any of the Fairfax County libraries because your books were JUST THAT LATE.

Okay, so not that bad, but pretty close. :D

cbh said...

i know exactly, 100%, what you're talking about. i seem to have the same problem...maybe its genetic and we can place blame on that?? however, my "library books" are the mounds of laundry that don't get folded or put away. instead, i rifle through the laundry basket until i find something to wear. i hate this, but somehow can't manage to fold the silly clothes. its not that folding clothes is hard... bring the basket to the living room, fold while you watch tv, put them away. simple enough. i just can't...literally...can't do it.

Victoria said...

My books are so late that I just end up buying them so I don't have to go to the library and show my pathetic face. Ack.

Good luck with that resolution!!

The Silly Wagon said...

um dude, the fact that you MAKE it to the library shows you are far ahead of me in the race to get things accomplished!

MadMad said...

HA! I was all reading this, expecting something huge... well, you know. You were there; you wrote it. Very funny. I think the stupid library should be closer; then we'd get the books in on time. (As an aside, how 'bout my fancy semi-colons? I'm usually all exclamation pointy in my comments. It was getting embarassing.)

Aliki2006 said...

We do okay with the books so long as we're in a routine. But as soon as something happens to throw us out of that routine and the fines start adding up. It's awful, I know.

Katie said...

Ohh -- so glad to know I'm not alone!!! With all we've paid to the library in late fees and lost books they should name a new, and very large, wing after me. Now I'm just outright purchase books. Not that I'll read most of them more than once, but at least I don't have the Public Library lable staring at me from my bookshelf. It's so sad to hear my little ones begging to go to the library and I'm putting them off with one pathetic excuse after the other.