Originally published April 5, 2007
I have a confession to make. I am a people pleaser. I like people to like me. I don’t like it when people don’t like me. It gives me hives.
Now, I know this is not healthy. I know this is not good. But hey, I have lots of issues I’m trying to sort out and people-pleasing happens to be about Issue #5923 and seeing as I’m only on Issue #297, it may take me a while to work through it.
So, yesterday. It was library day. Before we left home, I checked our library account online to see which items we needed to return. Unfortunately, I was 2 days too late. We had 56 overdue items. Yes, 56.
But that wasn’t the worst part.
The worst part was the notation on my account which read, “This account is delinquent.”
Delinquent. Me. Delinquent. Let me just let that soak in because, until now, I have never been delinquent on anything and now there it is, in plain writing, that yes, in fact, I. AM. DELINQUENT.
Do I need to mention that being delinquent does not go well with people-pleasing?
So naturally, I do the one thing any reasonable person would do in my situation. I panic. (And I might want to throw up.)
I worry how my delinquency will affect my stellar borrowing status. I immediately throw every last library book in the car and rush to the library.
I make the conscious choice to return the books via the drive-up book drop as opposed to walking into the library because I do not want to have to explain to any clerk or patron standing in, on, around or near the indoor book drop that the reason I am frantically throwing 56 books into the bin is because, well, I’m delinquent and I’m hoping no one noticed and maybe I can have a clean record once again.
Because I’m a clean record type. I am not a delinquent type.
At this moment, I am quite overjoyed that there is in fact a drive-up book drop because the person in charge of picking up my returned books on the other side of the drive-up book drop cannot connect my face to my gargantuan (delinquent) pile of overdue books. Yet I still purposefully pause after dropping in about 10 books so that anyone watching 56 books come through the chute thinks 56 books are actually coming from 5 different cars and not from just one car occupied by one delinquent woman.
At this point, you may be wondering why anyone would check out 56 books at a time. Well, we’re homeschooling and using library books is one way we avoid paying for expensive curriculum. Although, I am fully aware that THIS MAKES NO SENSE AT ALL WHEN I NOW OWE THE LIBRARY ABOUT $269 IN FINES.
But really, I can’t blame my delinquency solely on my children’s homeschooling books.
Because there was one (just one) book of mine in that pile. A book I had checked out for myself, which, SO unfortunately, I never took the time to read.
You think I kid.