I don’t believe we could have anticipated a year like this one – there were too many cumulative unprecedented things that happened.
History tells us something similar – eerily similar – happened before but that was then – this is now.
And yet here we are at the end of the year that started with so much excitement. It was after all a fresh decade. Full of so many hopes, dreams, and aspirations.
I won’t spend time talking about the challenges of this year – we’ve all faced them. Our frustrations, fears, uncertainties, beliefs may be different but one simple thing unites us. We weathered this storm.
Some day my children – and god willing grandchildren – will ask me about this year. I know all too well that as time slowly moves forward the sting associated with our memory of hardships dissipates.
Drifting softly into the wind like one of those cotton ball dandelions dancing in a gale.
How do I know?
I can’t remember the physical pain I felt after not one but both of my c-sections.
It’s an innate survival mechanism. For the most part we are biologically destined to heal with a sort of healthy amnesia.
I feel differently about the pain that was experienced this year however. It’s not so much that I want to recall it but I want to engrain the lessons of 2020 so deeply into my soul that I am permanently changed.
Lessons of what matters.
Lessons of social injustices.
Lessons that have transformed where we thought we were headed into where we must go.
At the end of 2019, I selected the word Discovery to guide me. I am in awe sitting here today as I think about 2020. Discovery is exactly what I got in the exact opposite way I thought it would all go.
Life is funny. Just when you think you have it figured out, you realize you were wrong.
And interestingly, I had prayed for more time together as a family. More time with my husband. More time with my children.
But never in my wildest dreams would I expected it to happen in this exact way.
My heart aches for all the lives that have been lost this year. For the frontline healthcare workers (many of whom are my family + closest friends) who are tired. For my country. For all of my couples who’ve had to put dreams on hold. For my current industry whose lost so much. For my previous industry who is fighting for so much.
But if there is anything we can learn from experience of pain, it’s that joy rises. So here are my lessons that I would share with my children and grandchildren in hopes that they could get even the smallest glimpse into what we took from the year.
You are given this one life – whether its a time of lemons or lemonade – find the good (even if its small) in everyday.
Do not be afraid to be the voice for the mistreated or voiceless. It may not be popular but surely it will be righteous. Your right thing may seem small but perhaps it will ripple into something bigger than you ever could have imagined.
You are stronger than you could ever imagine. Keep fighting.
There are rainbows after storms – these were our rainbows Addie + Logan.
There is nothing greater than time together. The feeling of a hug. The laughter that echos long after we gather. The way a gathering fills us with joy. The reminder of how much we need each other.
This year of discovery was exactly what I didn’t know I needed. But I am so grateful for its timing and intervention.
It’s started me down a lifelong commitment to chase, discover, build, and create a life that has been shaped by all of the big and small moments of this year.
There is something truly wonderful to be said about the awakening that can take place after a hard year. I am ready for you 2021 and all the years to come.
Even in all of your hardship 2020, thank you. I knew I would find life changing lessons in you.
Now let’s do this 2021 (coming tomorrow – a look at the year ahead)…
Thank you Bri for capturing our family this year.