Sabbatical

I sent the following email to my client list about a month ago, and also wanted to post it here. I have about two months left in Seattle total, and then to Missoula, Montana (more on that here).

I will continue to maintain this writing post—though I’m not sure how much—so please stay tuned if you’re keen to.

Okay. The news:

I have some pretty big news, and if we were in person I might ask you to sit down before telling you.

It’s this: I’ll be taking an open-ended sabbatical starting the end of this summer. This means I’m moving out of my home, giving away most of my stuff, and closing my practice in Seattle.

This decision has come to me pretty quickly, and isn’t one I share with you flippantly. My bodywork and movement practice has been such a huge part of my heart and roots in Seattle. Since graduating from massage school just over four years ago, my learning and work with all of you has been an unbelievable journey, seriously, and filled with more learning, awe and insight than I ever would’ve imagined.

The short story is: I feel this time off coming in my heart, gut and bones. There were a few catalysts for it—including my father passing, a relationship ending and moving out of my home of over four years—though this feels much less like needing to get away, or search for anything, and more like … Feeling the call for space to let the dust settle, integrate what I’ve learned and, I’m feeling, make room for new projects.

This is open-ended, meaning I don’t know if and when I will return back to Seattle; there’s a good a chance as any I am saying goodbye to the Pacific Northwest as my home.

Thank you.

I maybe should’ve started this message with that.

You all mean a great deal to me, and it’s only with your support—not only as paying clients, but as people with whom I’ve shared trust, and support, and even friendship however fleeting—that I’ve been able to move forward as I have. I feel tremendously lucky.

I do feel like bodywork and movement will be a significant thread continuing into this next phase, perhaps more than ever. This sabbatical is not spurred from feeling bored or stuck with the work I’m doing; quite the opposite, actually.

My timeline: I’ll be in Seattle with my regular office hours til August 6th. I’ll spend 3 weeks of August back home in Montana, and then return to Seattle for the end of August, and at least a big chunk of September, to see my last round of clients, close my office and say au revoir, at least for now, to Seattle.
On that note, if you’re feeling drawn to work together before I go …

  • We could go through a KMI Structural Integration series of 12 sessions, give or take one or two, if we start before the end of May and have a session about every week.
  • We could do 3 – 5 follow up sessions if we’ve done some work like a series before. You’d want to get those on the books by mid-June or so at least.
  • Of course and as always, you can also just come in for a session and we can make a plan, if any, from there.
These words speak my heart and mind pretty well right now.

From the poet David Whyte …

What you can plan is too small for you to live.
What you can live wholeheartedly will make plans enough
for the vitality hidden in your sleep.

(The full, gorgeous poem is here.)

And this from the opening scene of Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet:

It is not a garment I cast off this day, but a skin that I tear with my own hands. Nor is it a thought I leave behind me, but a heart made sweet with hunger and with thirst.

Yet I cannot tarry longer …

I imagine some of you may have the question of who to see if you’d like a movement trainer or bodyworker. I’d love to connect you, and who I’d suggest will be unique to you. So if you’d like my two cents on someone to take my place, let me know and I’ll consider who I think is best for you and where you’re at!

I’ll also likely continue writing and ruminating, so I do hope you’ll stay with me on this list if you’re interested in that. If not, or anytime really, you can opt out.

Love from the spring wind, Liam

Liam Bowler, LMP, BCSI
Dynamic Alignment Bodywork

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2 Responses to Sabbatical

  1. Nancy Rose says:

    Wow, Liam! Beautiful, heart feeling writing. I am glad you will be in Montana for a while. Life does unfold. You are giving yourself time to pay attention. There’s wisdom in that. Love to you!
    Nancy Rose

  2. Carswell says:

    You are inspiring Liam. I’m thrilled you have this option and the courage to go. Your bright beauty will shine even more. Much love to you! ~ Carswell Butterfly ~

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