All the Crazy and Beautiful Pieces of 2020 We'll Take with Us
Like most of you I look forward to the arbitrary and metaphorical line we draw in the sand on January 1st 2021.
We'll still be in lockdown. COVID won't be gone. My kids are still going back to online learning instead of leaving the house. We'll still find comfort and beauty everywhere it exists for us. Everything is going to be as crazy and beautiful as it is now. Of course, the world is always crazy and beautiful at the same time. It's just really noticeable right now.
Here's to all the crazy and beautiful pieces that I'll carry with me out of 2020...
Music will save us all.
I miss concerts so badly. And it's not like I was going to them every week. But the few I could make over a year either at night with friends or my husband, or daytime festivals with kids, were one the last remnants of pre-kid me. There was a point in the summer where everything seemed so surreal to me. Everything was so bright and so loud. There was so much news and so much to take in, that in the middle of it all, music was a hugely grounding force for me. Songs that reminded me of different times. Sad songs. Angry songs. Silly songs. Spice Girls songs. So many songs from different parts of my life, and this new COVID part of my life. I can't wait to go to a concert again, feel the heat of a crowded room and get buzzed enough on two drinks to be hungover in the morning. In the meantime I listen to music in my car too loud and let my kids hear lyrics they probably shouldn't.
I miss random strangers and impromptu conversations.
There's many social interactions that I miss, but I really felt the loss of the random connections and conversations that come over a day. Parents at my kids' school. People in shops and coffee stores. The people who hold a door open for me. The people who I hold the door open for. Moments of laughter, kind considerations and the connections that come from just existing. I have had a lot of small interactions with strangers over my lifetime that have really stuck with me in profound ways. I really miss strangers right now and I can't wait until strangers can hang out in ball pits in the streets again.
Parents got fucked. Especially moms. And especially single moms. And especially BIPOC single moms.
It's so hard for me to reconcile this. There were so many incredibly hard days for our family. For me personally. And for our kids. If you ever doubted the gender disparities around parenting, don't. The numbers prove it. And every mom I know was stretched so thin she was see-through at the edges. And that's how it felt on many, many days. Like I would literally tear at the edges because I couldn't give enough to anyone. A national childcare program is the only solution to the working environment we've created, and until it exists in our country, integrated with schooling, moms are always going to be worse off - pandemic or not.
I'll always miss my dad, but I'll miss him even more when times are hard.
There were so many times this year I wish I could have talked to my dad. About a ton of different things. From work, to kid stuff, to the general state of the world. I still feel like my dad did an amazing job of setting me up with the tools and worldview I need to survive my time on the planet, but nothing is as good as just being able to talk to your dad when you want to. I know my dad was proud of my work at Vireo, but he would have been stoked about Hoodie Chew Chew - it's way more his jam - and he would have had some good advice when things were hard and I didn't know what to do. But he's not here. So I just do what I do everyday and think about what the right thing to do is, and what would make my dad proud of me, and I do that.
People love kids. They don't give so much of a shit about old people or people with chronic conditions though.
I was so blown away by all the different people and organizations that really showed up for the kids in the early days of the pandemic. Virtual singing, drawing, special shows, educational resources - it was honestly overwhelming. That was the strongest sense I had that we were, as humans stuck on the same planet, really in this together. The kids were the most important thing for ALL of us. Of course, people seemed to give way less of a shit about old people and sick people. I'm still not sure why people didn't realize that old people and immunocompromised people could hear them when they said things like "It only kills old people and sick people." If you posted any of that, I probably saw it. And I won't forget it. And neither will they.
Entrepreneurs are amazing.
As stretched as I was, and continue to be, being self-employed also saved me. And lots of other people too. I was able to be flexible in ways I couldn't be with a job. Online groups, Zoom chats and old friends in similar situations turned up when I needed them. And I saw it happen for so many others. I also saw others get taken out. Probably for a while. So while a lot of us will still feel really, really, behind, we've all adjusted our plans and changed our goals to the reality of the world. For now, I've caught up as best I can and I'll just keep going. My 2021 plan is ready and I'm going to crush it. And so are you!
I hope you were all able to find more beautiful than crazy this year, and wishing you all the best for 2021! ✌️😘