The Sabbatical

I generally write to you during the full moon;  the full moon symbolizing the realization of seeds planted, a time of celebration. 

This month, I’m writing during the dark moon. The dark moon appears in the sky during the last 3 days of every lunar cycle. It can’t be seen with the human eye, but it’s the dark moon that presides over the sky until a new 28-day cycle begins and a new moon is ready to appear.

 

Often referred to as the “dead moon,” the dark moon doesn’t necessarily represent death. 

It is, however, a time for life-enriching endings and a prelude to new beginnings.

 

During a dark moon, it becomes easier for us to shed unnecessary emotional baggage and free ourselves of people and ideas that no longer serve us or add value to our life.

It is a time to cleanse ourselves and create space so that what is new can enter.

Some of you know, I sold my business in 2019.

This, and COVID, afforded me time to rest and re-evaluate.  What shall I do with the rest of my life?

I took courses in building successful retreats, and creating online courses before I decided to return to school last January, enrolling in a two-year program in functional nutrition. 

The work is challenging and fun, and I love it. I still teach Pilates, small group nutrition programs, have time to travel, and sleep past 6 am.

I know what you’re thinking: when will this hell ever end, Tina?

And yet, I’ve felt anxious and uncomfortable with this spacious choice. It’s the first time in my life I haven’t ‘had’ to work; controlled by the clock, my own ambition, and the reality of running multiple businesses.

“If you don’t do one more thing in your life EVER, Tina, you’ve done enough,” said Christine, a mentor. “Your leadership now isn’t about a curriculum, it’s about vision.”

I knew she was right but her words still terrified. How do you have vision when you feel so in the dark?

In a time for exhaling, I find myself clutching my breath. I do not know how to be a human ‘being’ as I am a human addicted to ‘doing.’

I won’t go into all the reasons because they’re not interesting, even to me, but the dark moon is calling me to retire my previous approach to life, connection, and worth, in the pursuit, of well, nothing.

That’s why I’m taking a sabbatical.

When I told my two accountability partners, Kristi and Alicia. I was taking a sabbatical from ‘DOING’ they laughed and said, “Yeah,
good luck with that.”

My sabbatical is from all the crazy-making ‘shoulds,’ ‘needs,’ and ‘musts’ in my head.

Instead, I am embracing rest, joy, intuition, and trust.

Learning, being in nature, listening: these are the opportunities of sabbatical. 

I know they will help free me from my ‘doing’ prison.

The dark moon represents polar moments of beginning and realization in the arc of the moon’s phases. When the moon is dark, you might take time to meditate on emptiness, the fertile ground in which seeds take root.

For me, I’ll leave the sowing to another day. Today, I’m on sabbatical.

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