Three trains collided this July, yet they all faced the same direction. The first to leave the station held the stress, exhaustion, and long term overwork combined with poor physical and mental health that led to the sabbatical during July and August. The second brought a load of serious self-doubt about whether come September I could again summon up the intense level of energy The ArtsCenter demands, whether I could face day after day the stress of the position. The third train carried my mother away and brought the realization that while I am not ready to retire altogether; I no longer have to work full time. I no longer have to endure the wear and tear of one 60 hour work week after another.
I did not expect all this to come together so quickly, but it has with the inescapable conclusion that this proves the right time to retire from full-time work and take advantage of being able to afford self-employment. I love The ArtsCenter and will miss daily being part of its bright, exciting future. I look forward to returning to the project-specific contract work I love without the financial challenges of earning a full income from those activities. For once, during this next phase of my life, I can choose only work that gives me joy and satisfaction.
I am, therefore, announcing my retirement as Executive Director of The ArtsCenter effective at the completion of my sabbatical on August 31, 2014. Since I am on sabbatical, this means that I am no longer involved in day-to-day operations of The ArtsCenter.