This year has been something. A pandemic, so many lives lost or changed forever, a shortage of toilet paper and hand sanitizer, restaurants and malls closing, wearing masks whenever you are out. Things I never foresaw happening in my lifetime. I suppose in many ways we are a bit naïve that this could have happened. But it did.
For my part, I have tried to find the silver lining in this. I am certainly not minimizing all of the terrible things that have happened this year, but I feel that we have to look to what we can learn from every situation.
I have learned to cherish my loved ones. I have learned that family and friends are so very important and it really is hard to be away from extended family, even if it is for the best until everyone can get the vaccine and we can start to live a more "normal" life again. It will be a new normal, but we will get there. If they could figure out how to cure diseases years ago without all of the amazing technology we have today, I know that the brilliant minds that are working on this will get us through this.
I have learned to love being out in the forest or out in the prairies. My parents had tried to convince my husband and I for years that state parks are amazing. We didn't agree, What could be so great about traipsing through the woods with bugs and mosquitoes and tics! Well, this year, we had to cancel our trip to Greece, and the only alternative to getting out and away safely was traipsing through the woods! We, ok, I really loved it, my husband enjoys it but not quite as much as me. He did buy me a hiking book for Christmas though, with the promise that I would not take him on all of them on 1 day! Even I am not that energetic.
I learned that essential workers are amazing! From the medical personnel to the truck drivers and cashiers at the grocery store. It doesn't matter what you do for a living, you were there to help get us through this crisis.
And my spark friends! You are all amazing. As I think of this crazy year, I think of the fact that we were here to support one another. To encourage, to listen, to empathize, to pray, to offer support when loved ones were effected by covid or didn't make it through, you were always there for one another! I pray that 2021 will be a year of growth, rebirth and healing.
Stay strong dear friends. We are going to get through this. Not necessarily the way you thought you might, but the path is there, we will follow the light and we will get to the other side.
Thank you for being with me for another year! Thank you for being my friend. Thank you for all that you do to support one another so that we can have a birthday party and be the best that we can be. I think that being 55 is going to be amazing!
Hang in there dear friends and spark on!