Was this year a shitty one? Absolutely. Was it the worst year I’ve ever had? Not at all. Definitely wasn’t the best but hey, I’m still alive and well. We have had some tremendous loss in our family this year but we’ve also had a lot of love and laughter.
My spouse and I were able to remain employed through covid minus a two week hiatus due to covid. It was absolutely hard sitting home and not working but we pushed back strong. My oldest son has fallen asleep more times in virtual class than most but he’s one of the smartest kids I know. He’s so optimistic and so resilient. Even with having gone to school for the first time and being the only kid in class. He never ceases to amaze me. My youngest turned one this year, he hated his smash cake and cried the entire time I was taking pictures. He’s officially been named the wild child much reminiscent of Donnie Thornberry (if you’re old enough to remember that cartoon) he keeps this house alive. Our baby girl went from private school to public and shined like a star. She’s so smart and growing so fast. I feel like this year we didn’t get to see her as much as we would have liked due to travel restrictions but I hope she knows we love her more than life.
I had two different wedding dates this year. I’ve booked flights that I then had to cancel. I’ve missed my mama and I’ve missed my best friend. I have nephews that I feel like won’t know me and I’ve missed events that would have meant the world to me. But in the midst of it all I’ve gained new friends. I have found that some friendships can endure the time apart and that others simply just wither. I’ve realized that I can still find joy in the loss and I can still find happiness where there’s been so much darkness. I’m an optimist at heart although I like to proclaim I’m a realist. I love to see the best people and I also hope for the best. I guess that may seem naive at times but my heart is on my sleeve.
I’ve found myself many times this year on the verge of tears, questioning why me, why us, why now. It seems at times it gets harder to dig deep to really pull yourself out of it. It’s so easy to sulk and lay in the misery. We’ve all been doing the hard thing and pushing forward despite. Despite the fear, the anxiety, the dread, the depression, and the loneliness. But that’s our nature. To survive. As parents we know that we have to keep going for them, as caregivers you keep going for them, as healthcare workers you keep going for them. I’ve seen astute business people picking up jobs delivering food after layoffs. By any means necessary we will survive.
We have been pulled apart in more ways than one this year. This may not be unlike any other year but it’s definitely broadcast a hell of a lot more than it ever was. We see the pain of others through our phone screens and it pulls at the heart as if it were our own brother or sister. But maybe that’s it. We are brothers and sisters. The happiness we feel when our favorite TikTok’r finally has 1M followers, when your favorite IG account hits you with an @ and it’s the most amazing thing. When a meme is so funny you have to share it with all your besties. Let’s start that trend. Let’s engage with the world like every person we meet is connected to our heart. That lady who’s carrying too many bags is your sister, help her. That guy that just realized he’s $10 short at the register, that’s your brother. Let’s fight against everything that’s been telling us we’re different. Because we aren’t. Divided we fall. Together we can be so much more.
I’ve never been the New Year’s Resolution type or the “new year new me” either. I’m usually more of the just winging it type; hold my beer type of gal. For 2021 I don’t have a resolution but more a mindset shift. Gratitude and giving. I want to remember to always remember the things that I’ve been blessed with and not focus on what I may be lacking. I want to be able to stop myself in my tracks of self-doubt and say “baby girl look around you, it is sufficient!” And I want to GIVE. My time, money, pay it forward, do for others, be there for others in whatever ways that I can be because the human connection is essential. Small things make big impacts. I’m a witness to that. My time on this earth is not to fulfill selfish desires, but to be a light for someone else’s.
So, be safe, be well, be kind. Happy New Year to all my brothers and sisters. Be a light!