what happens nextHi, I’m Shonali and I’m the owner of this blog.

If you’re scratching your head in bemusement, I wouldn’t blame you… because I haven’t been around these parts much lately.

And that’s because my husband passed away very unexpectedly on March 4; shortly after I wrote my last “real” blog post this year, on why vulnerability is so essential in building community.

(It’s ironic that that was my last post… or maybe it’s not… as I’m making myself pretty vulnerable to you right now.)

As you can imagine, my life went from pretty crazy (as most of ours are) to completely surreal in the blink of an eye.

When anyone you love passes away, it leaves a huge hole in your heart. And when it’s your partner/spouse of 20 years, and is unexpected, the hole is unlike any other.

Unfortunately, when your world stops, the “business of life” doesn’t (or should I say “business of death”?). Because there is SO much paperwork and just STUFF to do.

It’s exhausting. Physically, mentally and, most of all, emotionally.

Then, in October, my mother passed away.

She’d been ailing for a few years, so we knew it was coming… but we didn’t expect it to happen when it did.

So there I was, back on what felt like a double rollercoaster ride, moving in two different directions, at completely different speeds.

For the past several months, I’ve been taking care of the “stuff” – first for my late husband and then for my mom/family, and b) learning how to process my multi-level grief in as healthy and healing a way as possible.

I did continue with, and complete, the work-related projects I had. I kept up with my teaching. I traveled a LOT, both for work as well as for personal reasons (including to Zambia for the first time ever, where I got to walk a cheetah!).

Part of my recovery and healing process – everyone’s is different – was to start to have fun too, without feeling guilty about it.

But I could feel myself getting more and more exhausted. And Type-A li’l ol’ me finally accepted that I need a break. So I’m taking one.

Effective today, I will be on sabbatical for at least four months, possibly more.

I’m going to take as long as I need, to really feel rested and rejuvenated and completely ready to pick up on what I know are incredible opportunities coming my way.

I’ll keep up with my teaching, and might post fun stuff on social media here and there, but for the most part, I will not be working.

It’s time for self-care. Because without self-care, we lose our sanity… and I really don’t want to do that!

I’m very VERY grateful I’m able to do this. So many of us could use a break, and aren’t able to take one.

So I am truly grateful that I can.

In terms of the SBC properties you have come to know (and, I hope, love!), nothing changes.

  • WUL (this blawg) will continue to publish, under the astute and watchful eye of Scott Kaminski. Want to write for WUL? Pitch Scott: marcommscott (a) gmail (dot) com.
  • #measurePR will continue to be the kickass Twitter chat that it is, under the superb curation of Heidi Sullivan and Danielle Heiny. Don’t forget to put it on your calendar – second Thursdays of the month, w.e.f. January 2019 (the Dec. chat will be slightly off sked).
  • If you’re in one of my online programs… they’re still around, ain’t goin’ nowhere. 🙂

It’s just me you won’t hear from for a while… but I promise I’ll be back.

Before I head out, though, there’s something I need to say. And it is this:

THANK YOU.

You have been incredibly supportive, and patient, and loving, as I have navigated the most challenging year of my life so far, bar none.

Some days, I literally had no idea how I’d make it through. But somehow I did.

And I truly believe that that was because of my Higher Power’s grace… which manifested through my friends, family, my village – and that includes you – helping me through.

So thank you. From the bottom of my heart, thank you.

Please have a blessed and safe holiday season. Please take some time for yourself amid the holiday crazies (even if it’s not four months :p). 

And please do try to remember, and be grateful for, THE most important thing we can ever have:

Each other.

Have a good holiday/start to 2019, and I’ll see you on the other side.

Shonali Burke
Founder and publisher of Waxing UnLyrical, Shonali Burke helps purpose-driven brands bring big ideas to life. She teaches at The Johns Hopkins University, has gone back to school herself with the Harvard Business Analytics Program, and is creator/lead instructor at The Social PR Virtuoso® online training hub , where ambitious PR pros learn how to unleash their inner Social PR superheroes. Owned by Lola the Basset Hound, she's mad about ABBA, bacon, cooking, dogs, and Elvis, though not necessarily in that order. Wouldn't you like to be in her kitchen?
Shonali Burke
Shonali Burke

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