By the numbers, I don’t think so!
I’ve compiled annual reports and statistics; this week I am figuring budget cuts and real-life budget woes with a spouse laid-off…is this the measure of my work and my life? I don’t think so.
My annual report at work didn’t really tell the story. The statistics (compiled, configured and calculated every which way!) seem, well, delusional. I usually find beauty in numbers, formulas and graphs; but, faith in numbers, and much else, eludes me this summer.
I was directed to an article detailing a study on academic Libraries and their ROI (return on investment.) From the story, ”ROI is one tool for measuring and demonstrating the value of the library,” I’m not sure many people know what ROI is and just how would we measure it? I know that I did not mention ROI in my annual report. But again, the whole report detailed who we serve and how we serve them…with instruction, resources and reference.
What is the return on investment of a day, of a job, of a life? Can numbers even begin to tell the story? I don’t think so.
How do you measure job satisfaction? How do you measure friendship? How do you measure love? I celebrated a birthday last month and am now obsessed by these bad middle years. I live in the DC area and have been devastated by the heat and the commuting…so many days over 90 degrees, the hottest month in history, the longest and maybe worst summer of my life!
Yet, in this hard summer there have been visits from good friends and family; I’ve heard beautiful music outdoors; I picnic-ed with nieces and nephews; I spent time with my sons; I was soundly beaten at Boggle by my darling daughter-in-law. I spend lots of time watching the man I love struggle – I admire his fortitude and good humor. I have lost my fortitude…if you see it, please return it!
What is the measure? Drops, buckets, or oceans of anxiety? Comments, columns or rants from every media direction on any subject you choose? Giggles, chuckles or guffaws at the plans we make and find thwarted at every turn? All of the above… and more.
This summer doesn’t tell the story of my life. I will continue to just do good work, hold his hand and look for moments of grace. As for measuring…being here, being there, being in the moment is my only measure.
(I can hear you rolling your eyes at me and my too many ellipses, my son!)