This year of 2020 has been the worst because of this pandemic that has cost thousands of people to lose their lives and others to lose their loved ones. So many people are unemployed and have lost the businesses they have poured their hearts and souls into. Graduations and weddings have been canceled and other celebration events have gone by without individuals being able to celebrate with their loved ones. Many are finding it hard to find hope in these times and see a silver lining. Call me crazy but I am an optimist but I think there is always a silver lining to see. That is not to say this year hasn’t been difficult for me.
I had to cancel something I had been planning for a year for one of my best friends. I could not see my friends for months. I still can’t hug them which is really hard for me because I am a very affectionate person. That is not to say there have not been any silver linings in all this craziness for me and society as a whole. Let me explain. For me personally, my family and I have grown closer than we were before the pandemic. Before COVID, we rarely had family dinners with the exception of holidays because my mom is disabled which makes it hard for her to stand and cook for long periods of time. I have wanted this nightly tradition to come back for a long time. Due to the pandemic, my dad and brothers all help my mom cook, and more importantly, we all gathered at the table and share more quality time and conversation. Sometimes after dinner, we have even played games, continuing the bonding, quality time, and fun.
I also have grown closer with my little brother who is 17 and he is big into fitness right now. We go out for walks around where we live and he pushes my wheelchair. I ask him about his day and we talk about important stuff and everything in between. Before this, we really didn’t spend that much time together because you know, teenagers. He typically isn’t interested in talking to his big sister let alone spend quality time with me.
These are the two major silver linings I have found during this pandemic. I have also been given an opportunity to spend more time with friends virtually and meet new friends and form new friendships and for that, I am grateful. I truly believe that when anything horrific happens to us as individuals and as a society, we are all fixated on focusing on the bad that has happened that becomes our only focus. After the horrific event passes, we refuse to sit down and stop and actually take the time to reflect and ask ourselves “What are the good things to come out of this?” Think of what you were able to do during this time that you thought you couldn’t do when this started. There may have been some adjustments to how you did things but they still happened regardless. Were you able to still work to provide for your family or yourself? Were you able to get more time with your kids that you probably will never get back? Did you get engaged? Did you get married? Whatever it was you got to do during this year of craziness, be grateful. If this year has taught me anything, it’s to be grateful for my life and the people I have in it. At the end of the day that is what we should all be: grateful for our lives and what we have been given despite this year being an absolute dumpster
The reality is that there will be more challenges every year for us. Hopefully not as challenging and heartbreaking as 2020 has been. Tough days are guaranteed but we can’t let it change our perspective. Don’t get sucked into the group mentality that everything sucks. If we realize that this year has been a time of change, for all of us with social justice and other big changes that have taken place it is not necessarily a bad thing. It could and should be viewed as a positive step for future generations.
I challenge everyone reading this to pull out your phone. I will wait and write down all the silver linings in 2020. for you, It could be something small such as getting more time with those you love Use this list as a reference when you are looking back on this year and remind yourself that in the dumpster fire of 2020 there was good you just have to stay hopeful and continue to stay safe and remember we will get through this together.