This is a holiday year like no other, and it’s pretty easy to get stuck in a mental loop about all of the things we don’t have or can’t do this holiday season. I get it – 2020 has been a b**ch of epic proportions. So instead of thinking of all of those things,
Here’s a list of great things you probably have right this very second:
- The internet – I swear this is saving humanity right now because we pretty much all have a fail-safe activity if there’s nothing else going on.
- Skype, Zoom, or some other way to connect with loved ones even if you can’t actually connect with loved ones. I have thought so many times of wagon trains crossing the prairies and families crossing oceans on steam liners. A letter once a month would be very fortunate indeed and here we are grumbling because we can only see our families around the globe in live video chats. It’s just like the future. Plus, we can still mail a good old-fashioned letter if we choose.
- The brilliance of science – plagues and epidemics in the past had to sweep through entire areas, devastating the population and letting fate choose who lived and died. This one, we have the tools to stop.
- Knowledge – sometimes, it feels like too much of it. But this year we are flooded with the opportunity to learn more about what is happening in the world around us, how other people are experiencing this situation, and also the inspiring ways some people are working for their communities. When used well, this type of knowledge can be empowering. Of course, it can also be destructive – know your own limits and don’t get into a searching-for-more-bad-news spiral.
- PPE – in no other epidemic in history has there been such universal access to personal protective equipment. And yes, there was a scramble, in the beginning, to get protective equipment to the places it was most needed, but people globally have access to it now. I mean, have you seen the most notable alternative, a plague mask?
- Toilet Paper – I only learned to appreciate the value of this commodity after seeing the stress 2020 wrought on the whole supply and demand thing.
Four Horsemen, by Theo Moudakis, published in the Toronto Star is a close second.
Be Joyful This Holiday – No Matter What Else Is Happening
Even if your life has some common 2020 stressors – job loss, health issues, isolation, separation from loved ones – there are still things that can bring joy. It might be just the beautiful moment when a cardinal sat and sang on your bird feeder or the way the sunset lit up the rooftops the other day. Joy doesn’t have to be caused by a giant thing (I won the lottery! Yay!) It can be caused by tiny things, well appreciated.
I wish you the best and brightest in 2021 – may we all be nourished, body and soul. May we all know the joys of close friends and warm hearts. May we appreciate the miracles we are surrounded by every day, may we be present in the little moments.