I always take a minute this time of year and look back.
2020 is hard to explain, hard to look at, gone in the blink of an eye and yet the longest March of my life. I find myself thinking, “Weren’t we just dancing at the 2019 small business Christmas party like yesterday?” and then “It’s still Monday?” in the same five minutes.
Turns out there is tons of research done on how emotions alter the perception of time, and I will probably read more about it, but I just keep thinking about the movie Arrival, starring Amy Adams and (spoiler alert) the circular nature of time.
In 2040, when I am nearing 50, what will I remember from this year?
Hopefully the gratitude I have learned will stick.
Never again will I choose to stay home for Christmas. (Last year, I didn’t go home and I could have, what was I thinking?)
My apartment may not be perfect but I am grateful I had a safe and secure place during all of this craziness. I can’t imagine being stuck with roommates I didn’t like let alone an abusive partner. My small space may have felt suffocating at times, but it could have been much worse. I am grateful I didn’t lose my job. I am grateful for my supportive coworkers and the friendships that easily adapted to the virtual world. I am grateful for my dog.
And, I am grateful for the resilience I picked up somewhere along the way that got me through this year.
My reactions to the isolation and the unknown were not perfect, not by any means. I snapped at people. I moped. I dramatically declared I was going crazy. I was angry.
I was resentful. At times I lost hope.
Parts of 2020 were rough. I have never spent so much time alone. I have never felt like such a burden to my friends and family. I have never felt like such a bad dog mom. And, at times, I have never felt worse at my job. But, in the end (well, the end of 2020, not the end of the pandemic), I am fine.
In fact, I think I am better than I was this time last year.
At times I felt like I couldn’t breath, so I had to slow down and make space to do just that.
The slower pace left room for me to work on myself, to attempt to figure out my priorities, to make plans that didn’t revolve around other people. Two years ago, if you had told me I would be spending 77 per cent of my time alone for weeks on end, I would have told you it would never happen, that I would go insane.
Turns out I am better company than I thought.
That being said, I hope 2021 sees an end to this tunnel, because I could use a hug, a joyful laugh on a sweaty dance floor and an in-person game of scrabble with my dad.
Happy New Year everyone. Let’s close the book of fear, hate and awfulness of 2020 and take on 2021, armed with a great back story.