Last week, I came to a realization – maybe 2020 was not so bad. It happened after a guest told me her story of reconnecting with the son she gave up for adoption decades ago. He tracked her down through 23andMe, a DNA genetic testing company. Not only did she reunite with her son, but also discovered she has two grandchildren. She was spending the first of what she hoped would be many Christmases with them. “I know many people hated this year, but it was truly one of the best for me,” she said. I think we can all agree this past year has not been the greatest – a pandemic plagued the world, people lost jobs, businesses and schools closed, social outlets diminished, and our country was torn apart by an extremely divisive presidential election. And that just covers the year’s top stories.
While not everyone has a story of finding a long-lost child, many positives came out of the past 12 months. Families found a way to reconnect. Instead of running from activity to activity, families finally slowed down. They ate dinner together, played board games, hiked, and created memories and new traditions.
Neighborhoods were rejuvenated. With most people at home, more time was spent outdoors going to local parks, walking dogs, and chatting with neighbors. The busyness of our lives rarely allowed us to do this before.
We gained a new gratitude for people on the frontlines, not only the doctors and nurses, but the teachers, grocery store workers, and delivery drivers. It offered us a new perspective. 2020 brought out unprecedented levels of creativity and innovation.
Businesses stepped up and changed their philosophies to meet the changing needs of their customers. Teachers transformed curriculums. Technology made it easier for people to work from home and connect with family and friends. Advancements in research and medicine helped two drug companies develop FDA-approved vaccines before the year even ended – the quickest turnaround in history. This provides hope vaccines for other diseases can also be produced with similar speedy results.
One of my favorite things to come out of the chaos of COVID was John Krasinski’s You Tube series. “Some Good News” – a program focused on only positive and inspiring stories – something we all desperately needed during this past year. The show not only focused on good news, but it showed how all the uncertainty, fear, and anxiety brought out the best in people. The human spirit prevailed and that
is what we need to take away from 2020.
As we start a new year, let us reflect on the positives of 2020 and look forward to 2021 with hope, happiness, and an appreciation for the good in the world.
Happy New Year!