Of course, the given answer is books, because hello BOOKS! I love wandering around the stacks at my job and just smiling at all the books there. Books aren’t the main reason I love my job though.
I work with tweens and teens and they are so amazing to be around, talk to, and help. I’ve been at my job long enough to see toddlers become teens and tweens go off to college. I love watching them grow into amazing young men and women. I also love the fact that they come back to the library to visit and say hi. It’s an acknowledgment of the impact I’ve made on their lives and one that brings me great joy.
Now, every librarian has their favorite kids. We make sure to get books to them first, buy books they ask for, in general, give them the little extras that we can. I had one young boy whose Mom spoke to my Director, praising me as a librarian. His quote about me ended up in the library’s newsletter. I had to find a way to thank this boy. I attend Book Expo America every year and I knew he was a huge fan of the Guys Read series. Jon Sciezska happened to be signing an advanced reader copy of the new one. I had him sign it for this young boy and when I got back to work, called his Mom and told her to bring him over when she could.
I told him where I had just been and then handed him the book. His eyes got really wide. When I then opened the front page to show him that it was signed, he looked at me for a moment and then hugged me as hard as he could. That moment right there is the reason I love doing what I do. The joy on his face made my day and still does a year later.
Those little moments, the ones where a patron seeks you out after helping them to ask you other questions or when someone comes back to thank you for the book recommendation are what I live for.