Reflections

A Sabbatical Christmas Carol

Cat batting Christmas tree ornament
A Sabbatical Christmas Carol - now with cats!

On this chilly Christmas morning, all cozy in my holiday pajamas while watching a pre-recorded yule log on Netflix, I think about the classic tale, A Christmas Carol.

If the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future visited you, what would you see?

A year ago, my visits may have looked similar to Ebenezer Scrooge.

The ghost of Christmas Past would have shown me the Christmases of my youth, happy and full of wonder, surrounded by family. And even into my teenage years and early adulthood, Christmas would have marked a time before the new year, full of hope, when anything was possible! But eventually, I would have been brought to Christmases full of stress, thinking of all the work that still needed to get done back at the office.

The ghost of Christmas Present would have shown me, forcing a fake smile and going through the motions as we opened presents, all while dreading going back to work the next day.

The ghost of Christmas Future would have revealed a grim sight. Someone who has hopped from unfulfilling job to unfulfilling job. Perhaps, I would have been disconnected from friends and family, as I’ve taken my misery out on them.

Bah humbug, indeed!

But the point of A Christmas Carol is that Scrooge learns from these visits and is able to make a change before it’s too late. Before he goes the way of Marley.

And now that I’ve made that big, drastic change, it’s uplifting to think of how different my visits would be.

The ghost of Christmas Past would, of course, show me the same memories. But this time, I’ll just shake my head and instead of lamenting wasted years, I’ll look back at them as tough lessons.

The ghost of Christmas Present would show me today – lighter, more rested, more connected, and bursting with creativity.

And the ghost of Christmas Future would show me a life where I wake up excited for the day. I have a happy balance of work and creative pursuits. I prioritize art and exciting experiences over possessions and material things. I am surrounded by people who inspire me, respect me, collaborate with me, and support me.

Oh and Tiny Tim is there. But he’s a cute little kitty cat. Because cats are cool.

Merry Christmas!

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