New Year’s week often puts me in a reflective mood. I like taking the time to think about all I have accomplished and what I can do to improve in the new year. We all know by now that 2020 was not the year we expected or wished for, especially not how we imagined a new decade should begin. Despite the misery and bitterness this year has brought many of us to varying degrees, there have been some things about 2020 I can’t totally write off.
The additional time spent at home has given me plenty of opportunities to catch up on hobbies I love, while picking up new ones. I finished a few older games in between some new releases that came out, I started learning how to cook, watched a number of TV shows I’ve been behind on, read 19 books, and been diligently working on my YA fantasy novel and managed to complete a first draft of a short story, too!
Looking back at everything I’ve managed to achieve during this chaotic mess of a year, I’m quite impressed. Before the pandemic I’m lucky if I can even get one or two of the things I’ve listed done in a month. A year can be a bit of a stretch.
I know not everyone’s 2020 has looked or sounded like what mine has been like. I’ve been extremely fortunate to not be as badly impacted by the pandemic as others might have been, and it’s not something I take lightly or for granted. People have either lost their jobs or loved ones due to the pandemic. Lives have been destroyed and tensions have been running high all over the country. With the surmounting desperation and devastation this year has brought, who would have the motivation to get up in the morning and try to find a way to be productive, or have the luxury of escapism when they’re worrying about paying bills and having food on the table?
Not everyone has been lucky to get out of 2020 unscathed or unaffected, and if you’re one of the luckier ones that have made it out of this year no worse for wear, take a moment to appreciate your good fortune. There are people out there who want nothing more than to be in the position you’re standing in. And if you’re able, find a way to help those in need. Donate to your local food bank or offer assistance to someone who may be struggling right now.
You never know how your life can suddenly change in an instant, and maybe in the worst way possible. The least we can do is stop complaining about the things that don’t matter, be thankful for what you have, and be compassionate and generous to those who could use it right now.
Wishing everyone a safe and (hopefully) better new year in 2021!