Over the last 6 months I have furiously held onto my peace of mind as the non-profit I have worked with for 22 years has been going through major restructuring. Our beloved Executive Director retired last fall. Four of my six co-workers were laid-off and their jobs eliminated. Long standing support and educational programs have been reduced or completely cancelled. I have been reeling from all the loss and I decided to take a 2-month sabbatical in an attempt to make sense of it all.
I’m just a little over half-way through my sabbatical and after a couple of weeks of crying I decided to employ a distraction. Sometimes this can be beneficial and necessary for processing grief. There’s nothing wrong with retreating. It’s an opportunity to replenish energy and regain one’s bearings until it’s time to revisit a challenging situation.
I spent the rest of my sabbatical putting together this website. It was just the creative endeavor I needed to keep me out of falling into another depression. I had recently started to gain some ground with my mental health when my co-workers began to lose their jobs and I didn’t know how long my job would last either. I was terrified of falling into another pit of despair because the one I was finally climbing out of had lasted four years and my hold on resiliency was tenuous at best. Actually, the opposite of what I feared happened and I experienced how a shitty situation can sometimes be the fertilizer needed for growth.
Spending time on this website helped me to focus on what I want to do with my time. It gave me the chance to dream and plan and set goals, and somewhere along the line I remembered that I have strengths and expertise. I am alright and my grieving propelled me out of that lingering depression. Quelle surprise.
And so I find myself excited about the future. Perhaps there will be more loss at my workplace. Things are certainly in flux and there will be changes. However, I am excited because I have spent these last few weeks creating this website and refining my vision for what I want to offer with my vocation. I’m building a new business and moving in a new direction that actually draws on many themes and roles I’ve explored throughout my life. I wouldn’t say everything is coming up roses but there are certainly some beautiful flowers blooming around here.