So this week I received an e-mail from one of the professional organization that I'm a member of informing me that I was not selected for an award. I've been a member of this organization for 17 years, and I served on the board of directors for ten years. I was even the president of the organization. So, here's the e-mail I got:
I regret to inform you that your nomination for our Honorary Lifetime Membership Award was not selected from this year's pool of exceptional nominees. It was a pleasure for the reading committee to become familiar with your program and note the kind support and appreciative comments of your administration and students. With best wishes for your continued teaching and appreciation for your contributions to the profession.
A bit of background on this award: It has only been around for about four years. Every person who has received the award has at one time served as a member of the board of directors. In the entire time that this award has been in existence, I don't know of anyone who was nominated that wasn't awarded it.
Needless to say, I AM PISSED! Here's the funny thing...I was nominated by some of the teachers in my district, and they did it without telling me about it beforehand. It was supposed to be a surprise. Well imagine my surprise when I get an e-mail telling me that I will not be given an award that I didn't know I was nominated for! It's funny, but I'm hurt. The rational side of me says that I shouldn't care. It's just an award. It's not like it was the Nobel Prize or the Publisher's Clearinghouse Sweepstakes. I guess the part that hurts is that I have done a LOT for this organization, and as a matter of fact, no one has served on the board of directors as long as I did. I should just forget about it, or as the wicked-ly talented Adele Dazeem sings: "Let it go," but that's not me...I can't let anything go. I hold on to it and think about it over and over. I spend time wondering what it is about me that makes people forget about my many contributions. It's not like I did everything that I did so that I would one day be rewarded, but damn, it would sure be nice to be recognized. I didn't expect anyone to nominate me for the award, but it's just a little insulting to be told that I didn't get it.
On another note, this isn't the first time something like this has happened to me. I was nominated for president of my national professional organization last year, but the selection committee sent me a nice letter telling me that I didn't meet the criteria they were looking for. I was fine with that (sort of) until I saw who it was that they actually selected to run...people who did less than me, people who complained about the work we had to do, people who didn't do their work. Oh, ok...you wanted someone LAZY to be in charge. I get it! Thanks for clearing that up for me. (See what I mean about not letting things go? I'm still pissed about that, and it was over a year ago!)
There are other incidents, but I'll spare you. It just is disappointing, especially because it happens to me quite often. Whenever it does happen I try to look inward to see if there is something wrong with me. Do I do or say things that just turn people off? I know that conventional wisdom says that we shouldn't put much stock in what others think or say about us, but in reality, that isn't true. What others think and say about us does affect us. It keeps us from getting promotions. It keeps us from lots of things. I can't just walk around life saying "Oh well, that's THEIR problem" whenever something like this happens to me. If it happens often, and to me it does, I honestly have to think that maybe I'm the one who is the problem, right? Maybe this is why people tell me I should start drinking...