I won't write another post about how "bad" 2020 was or how "redemptive" 2021 will be, because the truth is that we all live different experiences and any given year is what we make of it. In all honesty, 2020 was a bit uninspiring as far as writing goes but life went on, and incredibly enough, a lot of good things happened for us.
As far as updates go, I can say that we've all managed to stay healthy in the middle of this devastating pandemic, the kids have been back to in-person school, Iggy and I have been working the whole time and we bought a house! (yay!)
Here's a recount of the 3 top things that 2020 brought for us and how we managed to turn them into a positive almost every time:
1. Anxiety: Between the lockdowns and the uncertainty, I know I am not alone when I say that my anxiety was through the roof for a good few months. Not knowing what was coming next, and being bombarded with bad news on a daily basis was hard but a lot of learning came from it. I was able to turn my anxiety into coping and my coping into spirituality and I can honestly say I'm a better person now when the pandemic started... and for that I'm thankful! I can now handle anxiety better and help others to do the same. Prayer was always a part of my life, but now it's definitely the center of it. "Nothing is impossible to God!"
2. Restrictions: Everyone who knows me is well aware that I love to travel, I also love shopping and hanging out with friends, so the restrictive nature of 2020 was rough for me. Not only were we confined to certain places and spaces, but we were also constantly missing the human interaction and seeing how the world crumbled around us. The restrictions, however, brought on more family "togetherness" and with that came better family relations and a mandatory prioritizing of life in general. If this pandemic taught me anything, it was the fact that all we need to be happy is each other and I am grateful that we were able to rediscover ourselves and nurture our family life. Board games, anyone?
3. Isolation: We are relational individuals, we are used to sharing our experiences with others and that is a big part of life, especially when you are a teenager and constantly crave interactions with other teenagers and like-minded people, so the isolation part of the pandemic was particularly damaging to both Olivia and Gaby. It was hard seeing the kids so alone and at times very sad; they were isolated and relying on technology to hold on to that little bit of contact they had with their friends and with that came an obsessive addiction to social media that wa verging on dangerous. So about two months ago, we made the decision to do away with phones for the girls and help them in refocusing their energy to do more "productive" activities and we have not looked back! Some of you might remember this post from 2019 where I talked about my regrets for giving Olivia a phone at age 10. As time went on (and especially during this pandemic), I was able to take a closer look at the danger that comes with the access that a phone provides and I am 100% convinced that kids DO NOT NEED PHONES! So in a way, I am thankful to the pandemic for opening my eyes and helping me get the courage to disconnect the phones and restrict social media for the girls in a world where that seems so odd (I will write more about this in a future post- I call it the "reclaim my child's brain" movement). I must say that the girls now have even better relationships with their friends, as crazy as that sounds! ;)
Anyway, enough for a comeback post.. I promise I'll blog more this year and I hope everyone has a wonderful 2021, filled with great opportunities. I hope we all continue to be finders of the silver lining and bearers of smiles and good news. As tough as life gets, I am confident that humanity and love will always prevail!
I pray especially for anyone who has been affected by COVID whether it was losing a loved one, a job or having their life turned upside down.
Happy 2021! :)