"And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom." Anais Nin
The above quote sums up how I felt last year to be: a tight bud. Constraining, uncomfortable, painful, but in some magical way full of growth.
2020 turned out to be, to say the least, unexpected.
It pushed us (and not gently) to reconsider and be creative in order to manage, or in some case, to just survive.
We had to continue dealing with the day-to-day life with the added weight of doing it with limited social support and connections, for some, even isolation.
For those of us with kids, to manage their education, social and emotional needs, without the structure, relief, and magic that schools and teachers bring.
For some of those in relationships - the change into seeing our partners every single day, without much break. Some relationships thrived with this change, others not much.
Work changed, for some it prospered, for others it dwindled.
And then the losses: of safety, of comfort, of jobs, of our loved ones... It was not easy, there's no denying that.
All of this while presiding of what is vital for us humans: constant Connection.
And above, trying to manage, or survive, while trying to keep our mental and emotional health also in balance.
No wonder that the general feeling about last year is,
"Thankfully it's over [sigh of relief]."
However, I can't help and wonder,: Did you take a look at everything that you did achieve?
How you did you manage: working from home, caring for yourself and your family, providing for yourself and your loved ones a sense of comfort and normalcy in the midst of the uncertain?
Did you learn to cook? Did you have more time to sleep in and enjoy your morning coffee? Did you paint a wall, or several? Did you bike, run, exercised?
Did you learn to slow down and breath in more deeply? Did you learn to cherish the voice over the phone of those whom you reached out to?
Did you looked within and learned something about yourself?
Did you realize that some of the problems that you have been putting away are actually not going away? Did you started taking care of them?
How did you grow?
I hope 2021 is better. Incredibly better. That we get to meet others without fear, that we can enjoy the mundane of going out to eat and have a coffee. To celebrate with more than one or two others at a time. To stay healthy.
But in the meantime, I hope you have taken the time to reflect about what was good in spite of the constrains of last year (and the constrains that this year started with), and that you continue growing.