Respecting A Year We Would Soon All Rather Forget

by Robyn R. Robertson

When most of us are counting down the minutes and seconds to officially put the infamous year 2020 behind us, we encourage each of our friends and family far and wide to pause and reflect.

All of us might feel like it is best to act as if 2020 didn’t exist or it was like a bad dream or an awful blind date, but can we learn something about the DNA of hard stuff? Can we mine some beauty and lessons learned from the horror of a life altering year? We by no means want to disrespect or ever forget that there are empty chairs at dining room tables across our nation. We know that for some, 2020 brought the unthinkable and irreversible.

With all of the sorrow and pain, life has a way of also bringing us these reminders that precious things like diamonds are often created and discovered in the most inhospitable times and places. So many of us spent more time at home with our family than ever before because of remote work and online school. 70% of people say they appreciate their family more than they did before 2020. 60% of people Christmas shopping this year said they wanted to buy gifts that they can enjoy with the person they were shopping for. 70% of people made a conscious effort this year to shop at small and local businesses to support their communities. We also saw some of the greatest breakthroughs in science, technology and medicine during this crazy year.

We learned that life and moments and seasons can be both horrific and beautiful and that they could coexist. We watched as many people felt erased when COVID-19 deniers refused to acknowledge the pandemic as real. But we also saw doctors and nurses make the daily decision to put healing and the life of others above themselves. It was almost like for every sign that humanity could not get worse, we were shown another great feat of selflessness and true compassion.

We did it people! We took the worst year in most of our lifetimes and we took time to sit and discover and imagine and think. We faced it and although our heart breaks for the lives lost, we didn’t let ourselves be overtaken. We respect you 2020. You realigned us and forced us to find some grit and determination many of us never knew we had. We mourn the sacrifices and what it took to overcome and we found and tried some things that didn’t work.

Michael Jordan said, “I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times I’ve been trusted to take the game-winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”

2020 was not a wasted year or a collection of our failures.
2020 will one day be the reason that we succeed and the place many of us found lves in the rubble.