2020 has been a year full of challenges and heartbreak. But, beneath the fear and through the chaos good things exist. It’s these positive notes that keep us going. So let’s take time to identify what we are grateful for this Thanksgiving in 2020.
- Health and Safety: First and foremost, I am incredibly grateful for the health and safety of my family and loved ones. I know what a gift that is, especially now. We are also fortunate that my family lives nearby. I can’t imagine not being able to see my daughter, son-in-law, and grandson. Or not having dinner with my Dad. Many families are separated by 100s or 1000s of miles and don’t want to fly.
- Time with the hubby: We are all spending a lot more time at home with our family. I am grateful for all of the time I’ve been able to spend just hanging out with my husband, not having to worry about where to go or what to prep, just good old fashioned Q-time, a chance to take time and grow in our relationship.
- Hubby works out of the house: At the same time as I am enjoying a deepening relationship with my honey, I am also very lucky that he works out of the house!! I can’t imagine how difficult it is for couples to both be working at home, tripping over one another all day. I have a quiet house, well mostly quiet except two barking dogs – where I can focus on work and be productive.
- Quiet nights and weekends!! Our culture has become a rat race and it didn’t stop when the workday ended. We were always on the go. I’ve enjoyed the slower pace of the past months.
- Being prepared and stocked up: I’ve always been a planner and this is one of the times it paid off. When things went south and we are scrambling to get basic needs filled, my family was okay. We did not run out of toilet paper! Sure, there were plenty of things that we couldn’t get during those early months but we didn’t go without anything critical.
- My job: I was fortunate to continue working during the pandemic. Even better, I work for a great company that went above and beyond to keep employees safe and comfortable. I am so fortunate to feel this way.
- Friends who care enough to be safe: We have a large group of friends that we typically spend a lot of time with. We managed to see most of them as things opened up. Thankfully our friends are careful and were willing to sit outside in large, socially distanced, groups and wear masks. This allowed us to stay connected.
- My grandson….and another on the way! This little man is the light of my life. He makes everyday better with one smile or a happy cry of “Mammy” when I walk through the door. Soon there will be two! I’m sure that will top my 2021 list!
- My writing: I found an outlet for my desire to write and have made it a regular practice over the past year. When I launched my blog in March of 2020 I thought it was the worst time possible to start something new. But I was preparing to launch for a while so I went live. I’m thankful this Thanksgiving that I did. It turned out to be a wonderful distraction.
- Support of local and small businesses: It seems people are finally returning to small and local businesses. These companies are the backbone of our communities. They are the ones who didn’t fail us when we needed them most. I hope we remember these businesses when things return to normal!
- “Buy American” means something again: I love to see people supporting “Buy American”. We need to stop outsourcing all of our jobs and manufacturing. This pandemic has taught us some valuable lessons about the advantages of domestic manufacturing.
- Respect for blue collar workers: Over the past few decades, many in the U.S. have turned their nose up at jobs that now fall into a broader definition of “essential workers”. I’m talking about store clerks, drivers, delivery staff, utility workers, maintenance workers, agricultural workers, law enforcement, and the list goes on. These are the workers we all relied on in 2020 and most of them are blue collar jobs. I am grateful to see them getting the respect they deserve.
- Technology: Do I even need to say it? If this pandemic happened at any other time in history we would not have had the infrastructure in place to quickly pivot to an online existence. We needed technology for critical functions such as medical appointments, work, staying connected, exercise, and shopping for basic needs. Technology, with all it’s shortcomings, allowed us to continue to move forward in a way that would have not have been possible even five short years ago.
- Comfy clothes! I have not missed wearing a suit and heels to work everyday. I put on comfy clothes, and sometimes wear slippers to my home office. When I do go into my corporate office, I see the wardrobe has changed their as well. People are dressing down – not sloppy, but not suits and I haven’t seen a pair of heels in months. I believe this will continue even after we reopen.
- Science: Finally, I am incredibly grateful for all of the scientists, researchers, and medical professionals who have dedicated themselves to finding a vaccine for this Coronavirus. I was skeptical that it would happen in a few years, never mind only one. But it looks like that will be the case. We should all be grateful for these heroes!
It’s true that 2020 has been an awful year but I think a lot of good can come out of it. Perhaps people will reset their way of life and slow down a bit, smell the roses as they say. Our communities can be stronger, our children inspired to make a difference in the world. I hope we don’t return to the frenzy that was our day-to-day life prior to March of 2020. I’m curious if you feel the same way.
What are you grateful for in 2020?