Tonight is the night folks. On the stroke of Midnight we can bid 2020 an enthusiastic "Good Riddance" and embrace 2021 with great hope and optimism.
2020 has been a singular year. Kind of a pooper all the way around. If I want to understate things I could say that it was unusual in a thousand different ways. What is that old curse, "May you live in interesting times". Oh yeah, it was an interesting year for sure. Still here we are are, poised on the brink of a brand new beginning. And I believe that it's more important than ever learn from this past year.
I will admit that I learned a few things in this past year. I learned, for example, how relatively unaffected I was by the kibosh on social gatherings. Turns out that while I am capable of socializing, it's not my natural state. I think perhaps, "hermit" is more normal for me. And that is not a good thing. In a more "normal" year, I would be forced by life, by circustance and by social convention to interact with groups of people. And I would do a good job of it too. But I adapted far too easily to the social restrictions that the pandemic thrust upon us. And once the bans are all lifted and we edge back toward the way things used to be, I will have to relearn how to be social all over again.
I also re-learned how to 'make do'. The shortages forced me to spark a few memories in my old brain. For example, I got more creative in the kitchen when the stores didn't have something that I needed. I dusted off the old memory banks and remembered alternate ideas. The same thing applied to cleaning. It took a few beats, but eventually I remembered how to clean without being able to immediately lay my hands on whatever wonder-product I have come to rely upon. Those were good things.
I was absolutely reminded once again of the priority list of Truly Important Things. Good Health being one of the top things. People I love being the other. Everything else just kind of falls to the side.
I learned how to be more patient and understanding when the stress of the pandemic (and everything else - like I said, it was a singular year!) started getting to people. I learned to put the needs of others ahead of my own wishes, by wearing a mask, social distancing and washywashywashy even when I didn't really want to. I learned how to be happy and in a positive frame of mind even when the news every day was more and more doomy and gloomy.
I was impressed by how many people stepped up and did the right things, over and over. Yeah that was a big one. I have always lived by the saying, "It's not what happens to you in life that defines you, it's how you deal with it". I think most people dealt with the Year of Covid, pretty dang well.
I will admit however, that I was gravely disappointed by one thing. I honestly, and probably naively, believed that all of the division, the strife, the petty potshots and political posturing on the planet would fade away in the face of a common enemy. I actually thought that this was it. The was the opportunity for the entire world, not just a state or a country, to come together globally to face a common enemy together. Yeah, I'm an idiot because that absolutely did not happen. We are all just as divided as we always were, if not more so. Sigh.
Meanwhile, everywhere on this planet, everyone is looking toward 2021 with great hope. And I think it' s true. 2021 will be better. But it's not going to be immediate, boys and girls. It's not as if, as the second hand ticks toward midnight that suddenly, magically, all of the problems of 2020 disappear and everything is rainbows and roses. It's a process. It's not instantaneous. It will get better, but hang on to your socks and be patient because it's going to take a little while longer until we are looking at all of the problems of this past year in the rearview mirror.
Nothing left to do now except wish each and every one of you a Healthy, Happy Prosperous New Year.
Yup, this is me. Some people said, "Sam, you should write a Blog". "Well, there's a thought", I thought to myself. And so here it is.