“Wow, 2020 has easily been the best year yet”… said no one ever! Actually that’s not true, I can think of a micro percentage of people who are probably riding high on this 2020 wave. The CEO’s of Lysol, Zoom, Moderna, and Amazon are doing great without a doubt. I wouldn’t be surprised if Tesla went into the toilet paper production business either- those babies will wipe themselves©! But for the rest of us, 2020 has been increasingly challenging with each passing month (*scoffs* if the definition of “challenging” was running from a burning building with all your life’s possessions and favourite family members). Nearly a year ago the world withdrew and dwelled under a collective depression- we have yet to emerge on the other side. I imagine the majority of us are hanging on by an invisible thread of hope, only to be thrusted back every now and again into a horrifying reality. The sequence of emotions seem to be never-ending; round and round we go.
So much of this year has been swallowed up by this pandemic; the seasons we look forward to and the holiday traditions we prepare for year after year have swiftly come and gone. For most of us, this holiday looked very different than typical. My family of three heeded the advices of public health officials and sheltered in place instead of seeing all our extended family within a 2-day period (we usually rack up quite the mileage this time of year). We desperately missed celebrating this special time with family and friends so it certainly wasn’t the same but somehow we managed to make the best of it. Long-standing traditions were set aside and new ones were introduced- more so out of need than anything else (with the eternal optimism that it will only be temporary). It’s been tough but as mentally crushing as it has been for my family, I know many others are worse off. Many of my friends became new mothers in a hostile climate; robbed of many of their “firsts” and rites of passage.
As the complex layers that make up a life started to dissolve away (school, jobs, material things, fluff), I think we all mutually began to appreciate the mundane everyday things we don’t always put great value on like those long embraces, brunch with friends, and spending quality time with extended family. I can’t help but reflect on one year ago today and how drastically contrasting life was. We were naively on the precipice of the most life-altering event in (many of) our lives and had absolutely no inkling. If 2019 was the year we took things for granted then 2020 really pummeled our arses. When I was looking toward intentions for 2021, my first thought was that I wanted to move past this awful year- to just erase all this dreadfulness but at the same time I hope we never forget. I want us to always remember what this time illuminated for us: that nothing else matters except love, family, friendship, and connections. My genuine hope for the upcoming year is that we show more kindness, share more love, practice forgiveness, let light in, continue to have faith, and appreciate all the small things. The saying goes, when you’ve hit rock bottom there’s nowhere to go but up- here’s hoping this is the bottom.
Wishing you and your loved ones a safe, hopeful, and happy new year!