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My journey to taking a sabbatical
Life can sometimes be unpredictable, and the things you thought you once wanted to do, soon become obsolete!!! Ever had that feeling?
Well, at the age of 31, I kinda found myself a little frazzled with life. My husband and I were working hard after having 2 beautiful kids 19 months apart. This is what life looked like… We found ourselves leaving home around 6am and returning home 7pm or later daily, having takeout dinners more than 50% of the week. I was chasing my career to the next level, studying part time, serving at my local church, being wife and mum, running the home, not forgetting birthdays (this is a big one, thank God for Facebook reminders), making home cooked meals, dealing with usual stresses of life, which left me spending so little time with my children, who not to mention were still babies, and not being present even when I was present…
I tried so hard to keep it together, and be graceful through it all!!! Truth be told I was not coping, and something needed to give.
After tons of deliberation with my husband and considering practical things like, my bills that won’t go away, supporting my parents, and being candid and open about how I would be viewed as a person, if I decided to put my career on the shelf for a while, among other things, we decided that an option was to take a somewhat calculated sabbatical.
Could that be where you find yourself too?
Yeah you guessed it, not the easiest decision to make right , but why in the world did I find it so difficult to step away from a corporate career and assume my role in the home without feeling a sense of “I’ve taken a step back”, I am regressing, I will be bored, I am better than staying at home (as if it's forbidden and bad) and countless other feelings of inadequacy and fear.
After a while I realised that it was most likely a combination of things. Throughout my “after school” life all I knew was to work hard and try to climb that corporate ladder, so this staying home thing was largely foreign. It definitely brought on the fear of the unknown syndrome. At the time I felt, that my decision went against the grain in my circle of friends, colleagues and acquaintances and possibly even in the community in general.
Nonetheless, I knew in my heart of hearts, like many others, that I wanted a different quality of life for me and my family. I had to say to myself literally, Wends... it doesn’t mean that your relationship with your career, community and friends would become non-existent or that you will perhaps become dead to the “outside world”...
but instead this would be the first step of grabbing a hold of a new adventure of self-discovery and contribution to our family and society, like you've never experienced before.
I realised, that life is a journey and it is all about priorities, which lead to decisions, and the outcome of those decisions, will ultimately determine, the quality of life and the quality of relationships. Time with my babies and choosing to live a healthier and simpler lifestyle, which we were so far from at the time, was our priority.
As a couple we chose what we valued, and it meant doing something differently to see a change. Ever heard that saying “keep doing what you’ve always done and don’t be surprised to keep getting what you’ve always got”
I wasn’t going to be that person, so I chose to do something about where I found myself.
One of the most anchoring thoughts that always kept and continues to keep me centred, was that, I was created on purpose for a purpose, and that as I progress through life’s journey, if I seek God first and trust the plans He has for me, He will give me peace and confidence to run my life’s race and run it well!
I knew at that point that taking the time out was the best for us! That was my trigger, what’s yours?
I had to relearn about my priorities and subsequently made decisions based on them and not what I found to be convenient for me or the accepted norm. That’s where it began for me …