It’s been a while since I posted anything here. December was grueling, as I suspected it would be, but not for the reasons I’d anticipated; the untimely death of a beloved coworker still has us all grieving.

I’d hoped to post something New Year’s Eve, but I couldn’t gather my thoughts in a meaningful way. Then I worked New Year’s Day and the weekend, so that ruined any chance I had of making a New Year’s Day post.

So here I sit, January 5th, finally able to write. Strangely, today is fitting; it’s the last day of the Twelve Days of Christmas: Twelfth Night, or Epiphany. It’s usually the day I un-decorate my Christmas tree and take it down. We didn’t get a tree this year, so that won’t be happening.

In any event, I think we’re all relieved and cautiously optimistic for 2021. I think we hope it will be better than 2020 ever was. Since the bar is set pretty low, 2021 doesn’t have to try very hard to be better than its predecessor.

That being said, this year is already starting out better than last year. For me personally, my parents finally found a house! It’s literally been one year since they put up my childhood home for sale, the catalyst and kickoff to my shitty 2020. I still have days where I feel the heartache of that loss.

But 2021 promises a new house for them, and alleviates all accompanying anxiety of finding their new forever home. Now it’s full of excitement–they get to build a house and choose what they want. After a year of real estate hell and so much dejection, it’s something they so very much deserve. I couldn’t be happier for them!

On Friday, I’ll be getting my second dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. Round 1 went well, so I’m hoping round 2 won’t be so bad, though I’m expecting to feel pretty gross. At this point, I’ll do almost anything to get our world back into some semblance of normalcy, and that includes getting vaccinated. I hope the public, when it’s available to them, will do the same. It’s truly our only hope of getting out of this pandemic.

I know not much, if anything, has changed since 2020, but I do feel hopeful. Maybe looking at the new year as a new chance is a coping mechanism, but I couldn’t go on dragging myself through the filth and grit of 2020 forever. I needed something, some reason to pull myself out of the COVID mire. So much happened in 2020, so many changes, deaths, fear, exhaustion, despair–2021 HAS to be better; even if it’s only slightly better, I’ll take it.

Looking back on NYE ten years ago, I celebrated in Sydney, Australia. I’ve often considered 2010 to be the best year of my life, and I capped it off with a bucket list item. It was everything I could have hoped for.

Image may contain: one or more people, people standing, ocean, sky, outdoor, water and nature

Pictured is my favorite photo of me from my trip to the Land Down Under. I’m on a cliff at Bondi Beach, and feeling I’ve conquered it all. I have so many more pictures to document 2010, it’s not even funny. It truly was the year I found myself.

I’m not saying 2021 will be my next 2010. It’s actually impossible for it to be that good. But I can start on the path to getting back to that person in the photo. I may have hit rock bottom in 2020, but I can only go up from here. I’m ready to make 2021 the year of me, where I make myself a priority and find myself again. It’s the only way I can create the happiness in my life I so crave. It sounds selfish, but how can we care for others when we can’t even care for yourselves?

It’s the only way we all can create the happiness we want and deserve, especially after the shit show that was 2020.

So here’s to a moderately better 2021. May it be full of improved health, vaccines, competent leadership, and a willingness to get along and compromise. Together, we can make 2021 better than last year (and remember, we don’t have to try too hard!). Let’s aim to get back on that cliff at Bondi Beach, with the breeze in our hair, the sun in our face, and an endless ocean of possibilities at our fingertips.

We are strong, but we are stronger together. And together, we can make it through this year, and on to better, brighter days. We can only control so much, and what we can, we should try. As for the rest, it’s up to the universe.

As I’ve ended each entry in my personal journal for the past several years: “om namo narayani”, which is Sanskrit, and more or less means “I surrender/bow to the power of the universe/divine”. It’s both humbling and empowering.

Cheers to 2021!


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