We are not out of the woods yet, but with vaccines starting to be distributed, there is finally light at the end of the tunnel…reflecting back on this unprecedented year there were many lessons learned, and many life experiences that were new to us…I could easily write about FIFTY lessons learned, but will keep the list to ten to hold your attention…:-)
- You get used to anything. Sad but true, and probably a protective component of human resilience. Imagine if back in March you were told that this new way of life would last at least a YEAR??? I was freaking out with the thought of missing a hair appointment for ONE MONTH! Yet here we are, constantly wearing masks, adjusting our lives in different ways and still surviving…
- Cooking can be therapeutic. When you have all the ingredients you need in your cupboard, and when you don’t have to commute home after a long day at work, there is something very satisfying about following a recipe and creating a hearty meal in your own kitchen. Having the extra time at home makes all the difference from cooking being a burdensome task as opposed to a fun activity.
3. Restaurants are entertainment. While Peter and I still go out on occasion to restaurants, the thrill is gone for now. Although the main focus of a restaurant is obviously about food, what many of us expect is an experience. We leave our homes for the ambience, the service, the energy, and ok, the food too. When it’s just about the food there is not much appeal. Hoping things turn the corner soon for these much valued businesses…
4. Family is everything. With all travel at a halt and social activities to a minimum, we had more time with family than ever before…did we get sick of each other? Surprisingly, no – not yet anyway! Within our bubble we are still having routine get togethers and even planning a 2021 vacation…in terms of the youngest members of the family, it became clear that with all the losses of normal life and socialization, they are perfectly happy with strong, loving parents and extended family support. Happy, active, and thriving. Family is everything.
5. Exercise can be done anywhere. Sure there are benefits to a gym – you have loads of equipment, group classes, and the motivating factor of other fitness addicts around you…but is it necessary? NOPE. There are many exercises that you can do in a small space, in your very own home…there is also the great outdoors, where you can go for a jog, a run, a walk, or do sprints. I have exercised faithfully since March and have even pushed myself into new routines…will I return to the gym when this is all over? Maybe for the socialization piece…
6. Alcohol is not the answer. It’s 5 o’clock somewhere…or even when it’s not, most of us got through this year with the help of many a cocktail, myself included. Though I may have learned this lesson late in the year, I learned it nevertheless: drinking every night is not a good thing. It may drown your sorrows for the moment, or for the night, but you won’t sleep as well, you will feel crappy in the morning, and you are taking in way too many extra calories. Three night max for me!
7. TV can be a fun couples activity. When you are home together night after night, what do you do after dinner? Reading is a fine option, but it takes you and your partner ‘away’ from each other, into different worlds…while we were never much for TV before, it has become something we look forward to doing together…some of our favorites: Game of Thrones, Breaking Bad, and now enjoying Schitt’s Creek – hilarious!
8. There’s more to do on weekends than hitting Bloomingdales. Yessiree, it took a pandemic to get me out of the mall. Not that I gave up shopping, but most of it was done locally and online…what filled these weekend days? Going to ACE Hardware (they have a garden center), Wilson Farms, or to a local nursery – caring for plants, gardening, watering flowers! So much fun! My biggest accomplishment was planting a morning glory from a tiny seedling and watching it grow to a massive flowering vine by fall. 🙂
9. Music soothes the soul. Ok, truth be told, I knew this before 2020. What I didn’t know, however, was Hauser, a Croatian cellist whom I discovered on social media…yes, he is incredibly handsome, but it’s his personality and passion for music that is so moving…while he can be very playful and flirtatious in his videos, my favorite ones are the more serious classical songs such as Nessun Dorma, or Song from a Secret Garden…simply heavenly.
10. Sunrises and sunsets can be appreciated anywhere. Sure, it’s fun to watch the sunset when you are on a beach vacation, but if you slow down enough at home, you will see some pretty spectacular skies…there have been so many beautiful sunrises and sunsets this year, it’s amazing that we didn’t appreciate them as much before. There is beauty all around us.
As I said at the beginning of this post, there are SO MANY lessons from this year, so many beautiful and unexpected moments that I am grateful for…this was my top ten – NOW LET’S HEAR FROM YOU!
Please share one or two ‘lessons’ YOU learned in 2020…
HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!