Monday, March 21, 2011


It's official. My six week hiatus is over. Today it was back to work. I started the morning about 90 minutes earlier than my "old" routine. Which allowed for a leisurely breakfast while reading a few pages of a daily affirmation book that a friend sent me during my time off. After that, it was off to an hour long yoga class. It was relaxing until the end. You know the jerk that can't stop coughing when you get to the end and it's time to meditate? And you're like "shut up...I'm meditating!" Yeah. That was me. I'm getting over a cold and I couldn't help it! I actually had to get up and leave and wait until they were done. I suppose it couldn't have been a completely zen morning. After a shower at the gym I was at work by 9:00.

So, what did I accomplish during my time off? Well, since I decided not to follow a stringent to-do list during my time off, I had to spend some time thinking about the things I did. So, here it goes.
  • Started a blog. Wrote over 125 pages (double-spaced, 10 pt font in case you were wondering)
  • Started a novel while attending a weekly writing class
  • Joined a new gym
  • Ran a 5K
  • Identified a financial advisor and put together a financial strategy
  • Did my taxes
  • Got all outstanding maintenance on my car
  • Read four books
  • Had weekly meetings with a therapist, life coach, trainer, massage therapist, and writing class
  • Attended a one-week yoga retreat
  • Signed up for two weeks back at Kripalu to obtain my YogaDance certification to teach
  • Identified and communicated with a Princeton yoga studio interested in offering YogaDance classes
  • Experimented with online groceries (I was not impressed)
  • Communicated with five family members to tell them how much I appreciate what they've done for me
  • Started talk of opening a bakery
  • Started the process to set up a trust, will, power of attorney, healthcare directive, and other estate documents
  • Sold a car
  • Bought a car
  • Met with a career mentor of mine
  • Made a decision about my short-term path at my current company
  • Bought a keyboard and re-taught myself to read music and play the piano
  • Partied and danced in New York City, Atlantic City, Hoboken, Hamilton, and New Brunswick (who says you can't have fun in Jersey?)
  • Cleaned out the garage with boxes dating back to a 2006 move
  • Freecycled my old BBQ sitting in the backyard
  • Communicated with my family about why my father left the picture
  • Wrote my father a letter, whom I haven't had a conversation with since I was eight
  • Met and began dating someone new
  • Waged war on mice problem and appear to have won, at least temporarily
  • Met several new girlfriends in the area
  • Printed over 600 photos from 2010 and put them into albums
  • Filled a frame that's been hanging on my wall (empty) with a collage of 2010 photos
  • Made at least four runs to Goodwill and Salvation Army
  • Got rid of wedding dress, bridesmaid dresses, and other engagement-related items
  • Had engagement ring reset into a necklace
  • Fixed my printer
  • Took the dog to the beach
  • Printed a favorite photo onto Canvas and hung it above the spare bed
  • Painted a couple of new paintings
  • Bought a 30x40 canvas to paint and hang over my sofa
  • Talked to strangers and learned their stories
  • Caught up with some of you and learned your stories
  • Watched the sun rise over the Atlantic Ocean
  • Cried
  • Smiled
  • Breathed
  • Laughed
  • Lived
These are the things I did. And, truth be told, I spent a lot of time doing nothing - which is to say that I could have done a lot more. But what I really accomplished was what I learned; who I started to become. And what I discovered about myself and the people around me.

You only get one life. And they say that it's short. But, you know what? I think that, for most of us, it's not. It's a long road. With plenty of chances to get it wrong. And just as many to get it right. To get lost and to find your way. To lose your priorities and find them again. I feel like that's what I took the time to do.

I wasn't unhappy going into this. I didn't feel hopelessly lost or overwhelmed. I didn't hate my job (completely). I wasn't unable to meet new people. But I had a nagging feeling or thought or something that my perspective was skewed. I was seeing through those non-prescription reading glasses you get at the drug store. Taking six weeks off was like Lasik where you get really good drugs after (or, at least I assume. I have like 20/30 vision. I know you hate me now.).

Someone asked me today if I was going to keep blogging. Absolutely. Even if no one reads it.  Because I can tell that this is only the beginning of some really interesting stuff to come. And I don't want to forget a thing.

I've accomplished a lot in these six weeks, and I hope that you've discovered something while reading about it. Even if it was just about discovering how alike we all are. Talk to you soon. Hasta, sabbaticaljo

1 comment:

  1. I discovered a great deal... about you (though I knew a bit), your capacity for life and love (though I should have suspected), and myself. I admire and respect you a great deal Jo. I hope you keep on blogging because I look forward to reading.

    P.S. I'm tired just reading that list. Well done.