At the beginning of December, the Bay Area was placed back into Stay at Home lockdown. Although plans for this December were not as hearty as other years, I did hope to have a couple of socially distanced gift exchanges or hikes with friends. Instead, I put packages in the mail or dropped them off on people's porches. I scheduled a new round of video calls. I downloaded extra audiobooks onto my phone in preparation for solitary runs.
There has been a lot of that this year; there have been many broken plans, many frustrations, plenty of audiobooks and a lot of time to reflect and think. There has been a lot of solitude for some and a feeling of being stuck with the same people in the same house forever for others. We have had to have patience and understanding; we have had to have flexibility. We have worried about our loved ones and been angry at them for their beliefs, just as they have been angry at ours. We have seen people in our lives sicken; we have been affected either directly or indirectly by an instance where someone has not recovered.
|January 1, 2020 - View from Mt. Tam|
We adapt; we grow; we learn about ourselves and our resiliency when faced by adverse situations. I know that I am introverted; I love to read and putter around the house; I am happy on the couch with a blanket; I can measure success in small ways: reorganizing my closet for the hundredth time (success equals getting rid of even just one running shirt) or making lists and crossing things off (Yay! I went grocery shopping!). We can edit our goals; this year I read more books than I ever had in one year (success!); this year I went to a national park in California that I had not been to before (success!); this year I grew an onion in my garden (okay, it was two onions actually, but...success!); this year I did not gain weight.
We will probably look back at this year in twenty years just like we do with 9/11 or whatever trauma we know in our lives and say, "where were you when..." or "can you believe we did...?" I lived in Istanbul for a few months, and I missed my first Thanksgiving with my family. At the time, I thought it was hard, but afterward, when looking back, even mere days after, it was not that bad. I have stories to tell about it. Did you know that I could not for the life of me find a turkey in Turkey? I had to make due with a chicken. And some of the side dishes were....creative. But it was an adventure.
This year I missed all the holidays with all of my friends and family, but in the grand scheme of things...it is not that bad. We are all happy and healthy; we all have jobs; we all care about each other and have been there for each other even when we are not feeling motivated. This year has been an adventure. Adventures are not always fun. The dictionary defines them as: an unusual and exciting, typically hazardous, experience or activity. I would say that this year qualifies.
|Look, there's hope! I can see it! (PC: MW)|
So long 2020; here's hoping that our adventures in 2021 are a little less pandemic, a little more rock and roll. To all my friends and family, here's hoping that in 2021 our adventures will be done together!
How would you sum up 2020 in one word? What adventures do you hope for in 2021?