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The Beacon

Reflections and Hope Series: Jim

February 8, 2021
Reflections and Hope Series: Jim

Jim’s Reflections on 2020 and Wisdom Looking Forward

The craziness of 2020 had me hoping for 2021 since sometime in May. Looking seven months ahead did not seem like a bad idea at the time. Then, I regained focus, tried to not look for the end, and began to be grateful I was able to do and actually started doing some of the pastimes I had given up over the years.

I started gardening and actually kept up with the weeding, a perk of spending so much time at home. I even made a compost bin and recycled most of our left over vegetable matter. I made some birdhouses and birdfeeders for the yard and family members (okay, maybe not just a few; but just enough). I had to give up going to the gym and, yes, sat still for a bit. But, I soon started walking lots of miles and staying in touch with much of my support people by walking and or playing tennis and, new to me, pickle ball.

I believe that, if I only had to deal with the greatest health crisis the world would have to face, I might have had a year filled solely with positive emotional growth. Unfortunately, this year was filled with national and international turmoil and devastation. It was also an election year, and I got addicted to watching news coverage about the election and how divided our country has become. I am, at my best, an optimist but was quickly absorbed by my worry about what would become of my country. It wasn’t until some social media sources were silenced that my general state of anxiety (most of which I was consciously unaware until it was removed) decreased.

I have no idea what will happen over the next year, but I do believe that our and the world’s battle with COVID-19 will be addressed and that truth, fairness, dignity, and honesty will prevail. Maybe things will not be 100% transparent, but I hold hope that governance will feel more “normal.”

The days are getting longer. I am going to start my garden soon and am already at looking at some new designs and plans for birdhouses. Plus, a long planned and eagerly anticipated RV is supposed to arrive in March… So, 2021, thank you in advance for renewed optimism and the great vacation my wife and I will take this year (destination, TBD).

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