Liberation Sabbatical 2023

[alt text] a selfie of the author, Gary Gerbrandt, a genderfluid nonbinary queer person who uses they-(or-any) pronouns. they are smiling, leaning out a window, with a black-outline tattoo of a crow on their arm, and a tiny gold pinecone pendant around their neck. Pathos, a pothos plant with variegated white-and-green leaves, dangles out the window and hangs in the background.

To my loved ones, friends, and communities:

I love you, appreciate you, cherish you, am grateful for you.

I am overwhelmed by a sea of kind outreach from the people I love. I have been avoiding texts and emails; notification anxiety struggles.

I want to reassure those who care for me that I am determined to live my best life, with clarity about who my best self is now and can be.

Right now, I am burnt out! But writing this post is an unburdening.

Today begins my liberation sabbatical: time to pause, rest, heal, grow.

For the first time in my 30 years, I am turning my attention inward. In the next several months, I am focused on my personal journey.

My goals: to heal and understand myself, to build self-trust with healthy routines and constructive habits, to invest in my values:

[alt text] a poster, divided into sky and shadow, about G’s values and identities. values: (sky/shadow.) TRANSCENDENCE/INDEPENDENCE. CONNECTION/LIBERATION. LEVITY/CLARITY. • identities, to world: OPEN/FEEL. to others: ROCK/BRAT. to self: SOAR/DIVE.

I recognize my privilege in taking this time, and that not every trauma-laden gender-diverse queer enby millennial can. Here’s to healing, no matter what form it takes, how long it takes, where it leads you.

While there will be periods where I plan to be off-grid and solo, I will call and write to people when I have capacity. I may even text or email. But for now, if I don’t write back, I’m still alive, and I love you.

Thank you for your solidarity and kindness as I navigate my journey.