Updated: Apr 8
2020 for me was all about going inside, both literally and figuratively speaking. I spent more time in my house and alone this year than ever in my life before. I’m an introvert and an only child, but even I found myself suffering from solitude at times. The absence of engagements brought about reflection because that’s what happens when you eliminate distractions, and I found that there were far less things than what I had once considered important.
It quickly became clear that cooking was of the utmost importance and I learned how to cook anything and everything I could think of. Soup became one of my go-to favorites since it’s pretty healthy, low in fat, easy to make, and the leftovers last. My daughter and I also enjoyed baking, which was pretty much a first for both of us. Cookies, cakes, banana bread, and pumpkin seeds all made their way into the oven in order to find more activities during quarantine, but it’s safe to say that I am officially sick of cooking and even eating can feel like a chore after having done it at home three times a day over last 300 days. Worse yet, were the dishes that went along with it, but hey, I certainly learned something that I probably wouldn’t have had I not been trapped in the house for months on end.
Prior to 2020, I was feeling a bit bored of my job, but this year gave me some new perspective after wondering how relevant it would be in a pandemic and if I could possibly lose it. Although teaching still isn’t my final goal or greatest dream, I really value the flexibility, sociability, and variety it constantly offers me with courses that change locations, methods that always need improvement, and my students who make it all worth it by challenging me to improve my communication and be more creative. I am no longer taking my work and the satisfaction that it brings me for granted.
Who and what is really important to me became quite apparent in 2020 and I cut out all of the distracting activities and relationships, which were filling space, but not supporting or fulfilling me entirely. I listened to what my soul was saying and followed my truth by letting go of the people and objects that no longer fit me. In fact, I spent the last few weeks of the year cleaning out my house in order to let go of the furniture and clutter, which no longer belonged in the place where I’m living and the space where and that I want to be creating.
I reflected on the world a lot during the year and frequently found myself in tears. The pandemic gave me a lot of insight both into the interconnectedness and the turmoil that exist amongst us. I got lost thinking about all of the world’s injustice and inequality including, but not limited to, race, gender, wealth, age, nationality, and sexual orientation. I thought about our prison system and watched shows and documentaries to learn about it. I thought about politics, pollution, climate change, and population. I wondered how long the world will continue to survive like this. I concluded that we are the virus and I’m not sure how much longer Mother Nature will take it. I realized that even with all of our technology and the great things we’ve created, we are nothing on this planet and we can be wiped out in an instant if Earth decides it.
The strangeness of the year caused me to ponder the sense of any of it. Why do we live in the end? Is humanity going to do anything good with its existence? I clearly know nothing more than anyone else on the answers to these questions, but I'm thankful that the world stopped for a bit this year because I did too and it has made all the difference. To close out 2020, I decided to meditate on love because I thought that it was something that both myself and the world could use more of. I sent out every last drop of it that I had to any and all of the recipients that it could benefit, then I said thank you to the universe for everything I learned in the end, and asked for continual guidance on my path towards truth and fulfillment. I let my prayer go just a bit before midnight as the end of one year came to a close and the cycle of a new one rose. I released what I lived in order to welcome whatever 2021 has to bring me and everyone else on their journeys because if hindsight is 20/20, it's clear that we never really know what's coming!