The Journey: Time to shake off 2020

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By Samantha Brazie, Special to The Paper

It’s the most wonderful time of the year …. but why does it not feel like it?

Wildfires.

Coronavirus.

Quarantine.

Rioting.

Hurricanes.

Election year.

Clearly we have dealt with natural disasters, viruses, civil unrest, and elections in our lifetime, but not all at one time.

But Paper readers, it’s time to move forward. It is time to get our heads in the space to shake 2020 off and get ready for the next stage in our lives. We know without a doubt what a disaster this year has been. Let’s choose not to give it any more energy.

The holidays are fun and fulfilling for many, but there are just as many that have a really hard time with them. 64% of people with mental illness (this includes depression and anxiety) say the holidays actually make them feel worse. This year cannot be any better. It is impossible to live our normal lives without concessions and we must forego many, many ‘normalcies’ in the name of safety.

Earlier this year it was pretty commonplace to check in on people we haven’t seen in a while and make sure they were ok and communicate that ‘we’re all in this together.’ It seems that lately a lot of those emotions have been replaced by anger and resentment.

But guess what?! We are still here. Life is still going on all around us and if this year teaches us to stop living, we are learning the wrong lesson. I’m not saying to run around licking random objects, but let’s focus on some good, even if it’s just the last few weeks of the year. Time with family, video chatting with friends you haven’t been able to connect with, a quick ‘porch drop’ with some fun items to gift a friend, even sending a text to let someone know you miss them and are thinking about them. You really never know how something like this will make someone feel. At the end of the day, know that you have done everything you can to help others and make them smile … and as you well know – that is an amazing feeling.

Do not let 2020 rob you of time with your loved ones around the holidays, regardless of what that looks like. Don’t let it have the last word! You’ve got this, friends. Really, you do.

“There comes a day when you realize turning the page is the best feeling in the world, because you realize there is so much more to the book than the page you were stuck on.” – Zayn Malik

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